Does it Work? - Body Flex charged by FTC for making false claims




Suzanne 3FC
11-10-2003, 03:08 PM
FYI

FTC Charges Bodyflex Marketers with False Advertising

Challenges Claim That BodyFlex Users Will “lose 4 to 14 inches in the first 7 days”

The Federal Trade Commission has sued the marketers of the BodyFlex+ System (“BodyFlex”) for falsely advertising that BodyFlex causes fast inch loss and fat loss. The FTC’s complaint, filed in federal district court, names as defendants Savvier Inc. and Savvier LP, California companies; their principals, Jack Ching Chung Chang, Jeffrey T. Tuller, and Keith Greer; and BodyFlex “creator”and spokesperson Greer Childers.

The BodyFlex+ System includes a Gym Bar and a breathing technique. The BodyFlex 18-minute “workout” involves several minutes of deep breathing and stretching, followed by exercises with the BodyFlex Gym Bar. The defendants have promoted BodyFlex through a heavily aired national infomercial and on the Internet at www.bodyflex.com. The defendants claim that, “in just seven days you can lose from four to 14 inches guaranteed with BodyFlex Plus.” According to the ads, the BodyFlex breathing is the “secret to burning fat,” because it supposedly “will supercharge your blood with fat-burning oxygen and you’ll lose inches fast.” BodyFlex ads emphasize that the “workout” takes only minutes a day and can be performed sitting down. The defendants stress that the “program is not about food.”

“These claims of fast, easy inch loss without diet or exercise exploit the millions of overweight Americans looking for an effective weight-loss and exercise program,” said Howard Beales, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “Frankly, we think BodyFlex’s breathtaking claims are full of hot air.”

The FTC complaint alleges that the defendants have falsely claimed that:

BodyFlex causes users to lose from four to 14 inches across six body areas in the first seven days without reducing calories;
BodyFlex causes users to burn enough body fat to achieve the claimed inch loss in seven days; and
a clinical study proves that BodyFlex causes significant fat and inch loss in the first seven days.
The FTC asked the court to issue an immediate temporary restraining order for all defendants, except Greer Childers, to prohibit them from making the challenged false claims, and freezing their assets, and require an immediate accounting. Defendant Greer Childers has stipulated to the entry of a temporary order that prohibits her from making the challenged claims, freezes certain of her assets, and requires an accounting. The FTC also is seeking preliminary and permanent injunctive relief, including redress for BodyFlex purchasers.

According to the FTC, the BodyFlex infomercial has been among the 10 most frequently aired infomercials in weekly U.S. rankings, and has aired over 2,000 times from February through September 2003 on national cable channels such as Bravo, The History Channel, and Home & Garden Television. The defendants have spent approximately $22 million to promote BodyFlex through the infomercial, according to the FTC.

The defendants have sold BodyFlex for $39.90, plus $14.95 shipping and handling (totaling $54.85) directly to consumers through their toll-free number or Web site. The product also has been offered for sale on third-party Web sites, such as www.tvproductsonly.com.

The Commission vote to authorize staff to file the complaint was 5-0. The complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, in Los Angeles, on November 7, 2003.

Consumer Tips

The FTC is issuing two updated consumer publications about exercise equipment, “Avoiding the Muscle Hustle” and “Pump Fiction: When Marketers Overextend Their Fitness Claims.” These publications, found at www.ftc.gov/dietfit, offer tips to consider and questions to ask before buying exercise equipment.

To lose weight and get in shape:

1. Commit to sensible eating and moderate exercise.

2. Remember: the benefits of exercise require exercise – not gizmos or gimmicks.

3. Be patient. Losing weight and inches takes time.

The FTC hotline number for BodyFlex is 202-326-2935.

NOTE: The Commission files a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated, and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest. The complaint is not a finding or ruling that the defendant has actually violated the law. The case will be decided by the court.

Copies of the complaint are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint, or to get free information on any of 150 consumer topics, call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1 877-382-4357), or use the complaint form at http://www.ftc.gov. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Brenda Mack,
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-2182

STAFF CONTACT:

Joni Lupovitz or Robin Rosen Spector
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-3743 or 202-326-3740

http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2003/11/bodyflex.htm


Kayecee
11-12-2003, 10:46 PM
That woman got on my nerves anyway! LOL

Carnation
11-14-2003, 02:30 PM
I've been doing the BodyFlex routine for a little over five years and I love it!!! At first I used it to help me lose my first 50# by doing it daily. Then I used it to maintain by doing it five days per week. Now I'm on my way to lose the rest of my unwanted poundage and I'm back to doing it daily. I've lost another 25# with about 10# more to go.

During my early time on BF I could not even walk around the block. In fact, I had to carry a phone with me so I could call my husband to come pick me up. Later on I added more distance as I lost weight. I have severe degenerative arthritis so the weight just piled on as I sat and watched it accumulate. BF changed so many thing in my life that I will be forever grateful. I still have arthritis but the start that BF gave me way back in the beginning is invaluable.

Now I am up to walking three miles on my "walk days" and I'm in good enough shape to join Curves for Women which I enjoy. I have also recently added the Atkins program because I had dangerously high triglycerides. Those levels have come down and I'm no longer in the danger zone!

But it all started with BodyFlex. Anyone can do it even with limitations. I kept my inch loss record for only a short while but I lost 7.5" in the month without exercise other than a few of the stretching positions included in the program. I could not do all of them because there was simple too much me! My next recorded inch loss showed a total of 18", but that entry was not dated.

Eventually I went from a size 22-24 to my latest pair of jeans which are a size 12!!! I'm one happy camper. It all started with BodyFlex!!! No, I don't work for anyone associated with BF - I'm just a satisfied customer.


Angel26519
11-15-2003, 08:52 PM
Thanks for your input.... I know several people that are happy with Body Flex!

Ruthxxx
11-16-2003, 10:31 AM
I have it but have not yet started it seriously. However, LindaBC has been doing it and says it has really helped her. I never did pay much attention to manufacturer's hype but bought one knowing it worked for her. We are both stubborn losers!

ivyrose76
11-17-2003, 01:00 AM
I just read the post about BodyFlex being sued...I hate to tell the FTC but it *DID* in fact work for me those first seven days and I *DID* lose 14 inches in the six target areas. I have absolutely NO complaints about this product and I hope that she beats them. I unfortunately have had a series of illnesses hit me over the past three weeks and I've been unable to do the breathing exercises, but I'm looking forward to starting again tomorrow. I love the BodyFlex system and I think that the people that have posted here should celebrate how it has helped and continues to do so. That is just my two cents though...

lynna
01-11-2004, 01:26 PM
Originally posted by ivyrose76
I just read the post about BodyFlex being sued...I hate to tell the FTC but it *DID* in fact work for me those first seven days and I *DID* lose 14 inches in the six target areas. I have absolutely NO complaints about this product and I hope that she beats them. I unfortunately have had a series of illnesses hit me over the past three weeks and I've been unable to do the breathing exercises, but I'm looking forward to starting again tomorrow. I love the BodyFlex system and I think that the people that have posted here should celebrate how it has helped and continues to do so. That is just my two cents though...

Hi,

I have to add my 2 cents to this. I was 245 and 5 feet 3 1/2 inches. In only 2 weeks with Bodyflex I lost 10 pounds AND 13 inches. I have had people come up to me and say wow what are you doing? Most inch loss was in my midsection. My legs and arms have been very stubborn. I also LOVE Tony Little. I do his ignight the Circut tapes.

I am on the Southbeach Diet program. I have to lose weight as I am borderline diebetic. I am very excited about this program started it Tuesday of this week and the pants that were too tight on me last week in the stomach are now comfortable!!!

Janiepeppers
05-13-2004, 10:20 PM
I too love the Body flex! It works so those people who are suing didn't do it right! I started it in Aug 2003 & used it about a month & lost inches. I don't have my paper in here now but I think it was 6. I used it for a while then got lazy but still remembered my breathing when I was walking the stairs ect. I have been abck on it again for 6 weeks & now have lsot a totao of 19 1/2 inches. IT IS WONDERFUL! Go Greer

misslily
05-23-2004, 05:35 PM
is it working for people who have a relatively large amount of weight to use and are relatively inactive. i am up to a size 10 from my usual size 8 after having put on 12 lbs in 3 months (due to stress eating). i wonder if i would benefit from it or should i just get my eating under control. could someone describe it in more detail? is the breathing anything like oujai breathing in yoga?

thanks