Power Balance: Popular, Overpriced Hologram Wristbands Are a Fraud, Company Admits

lamar_odom1.jpg
The "secret" lies within the yellow thing on Odom's wrist.
You may have seen the colorful rubber wristbands around. They're about as trendy with celebs and athletes as flannel and plaid are with hipsters. 

Lamar Odom of the Los Angeles Lakers. Mark Sanchez of the New York Jets. David Beckham of fashion and futbol. Skateboarding wunderkind Ryan Sheckler. Music magnate P. Diddy. Teemu Selanne of the Anaheim Ducks. They all wear 'em. And the list goes on and on.

They're supposed to improve flexibility, balance and strength by "optimizing the body's natural energy flow." How do the bracelets do this? Through the power of a hologram. Yes, a hologram. But not just any hologram--one that's been "designed to resonate with and respond to the natural energy field of the body."

We call bullshit. And recently, so, too, did the company.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is to thank for the coming clean of the hologram-producing company. The commission believed all the claims for the product to be misleading and mandated that Power Balance produce scientific evidence proving the wristbands' so-called benefits.

The Laguna Niguel-based company had none and released this statement: "We admit that there is no credible scientific evidence that supports our claims."

The wristbands sell for $29.95. In 2007, when Power Balance introduced the product, it sold $8,000 of merchandise. Final sales figures from 2010 are expected to top $35 million.

That's one hell of a financially beneficial hoax.

Power Balance  has said it is willing to issue refunds.

Based on all the testimonials on the company's website, as well as people whom the Weekly know use it, science or no science, the wristband seems to work for some, even if it is just a placebo effect.

Coming soon: Weekly slap bracelets that cure the common hangover.
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18 comments
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wristbands
wristbands

I heard that the power balance admits no science behind wristbands.

niceonegreg
niceonegreg

There is a ton of new age junk like this claiming to offer some kind of benefit to the wearer. I think it was counterproductive for the aussie government to take this step. Now more people will be under the impression that government is actually policing this stuff, which they could care less about.

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

I think it was the 1970's where someone was claiming Copper Bracelets could take arthritis away. I often am amazed on the number of cures and cannot live without items sold on infomercials on late night TV.

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

I am wondering, (with tongue in cheek) why an Australian Agency had to bring this out, where is our wonderful FDA to protect us from snake oil salesmen?

Bill T.
Bill T.

The FDA was emasculated by the congress a few years ago by the "natural" product gang ("It's all natural so you know it's safe"). People are not educated to the fact that

FtheKings
FtheKings

You need the FDA to tell you this product is a crock? Bet you're bummed Uncle Sam doesn't hold your dick when you pee...

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

Do you not comprehend what "tongue in cheek" means? or are the words just too big? It was sarcasm, Google it...

Greg Blankinship
Greg Blankinship

My name is Greg Blankinship, and I am a lawyer investigating potential false advertising claims in connection with the Power Bracelet. If you purchased a Power Bracelet and would like to discuss your legal options, please contact me:

gblankinship@mdpcelaw.comMeiselman, Denlea, Packman, Carton & Eberz, P.C.1311 Mamaroneck AvenueWhite Plains, NY 06831914-517-5000Attorney Advertising

Yet another guest
Yet another guest

Come on people. Greg is just a poor lawyer who wants a piece of that $35M. He needs our help! Let's get behind him and sue the dickens out of those rotten businessmen.

Or, if you bought one, you could just send it back and get a refund I guess.

John Martel
John Martel

If you feel like you were ripped off, by all means ask for your money back. Suing, IMHO is pointless. They offered money back - take it before they have none left. Even if a suit was filed and won, and each "winner" got $60 (no way) you'd do much better taking the $30 now then get that or less later after the lawyers take their cut.

Guest
Guest

I would get the facts straight and get off your butt and do some of your own research instead of plagiarizing other slanderous news stories that have already run. Talk about a scam. Anything original in your writing?

Chasen_Marshall
Chasen_Marshall

Yeah, I thought the line about hipsters was pretty original. I may be wrong. Let me guess, you're a PB believer? I've met the owners. I've done the test. I was calling BS three years ago. So, do you know something that every other major media outlet doesn't? Please, share your knowledge. BTW, "Guest" isn't very original.

different Guest
different Guest

As original as you may be, flannel and plaid is over! even in Canada. What are you, 90? Did you know that? That's what 'hipsters' wore twenty years ago...even if you think it was just yesterday. & when 'celebs and athletes' are being paid to endorse these products don't you dare try to tell me what 'trendy' is. Chasen don't try to make me look stupid either, I'm just pointing this out.

Chasen_Marshall
Chasen_Marshall

Trendiness actually has nothing to do with this post at all. Mainly, it's to point out that businessman making illegitimate claims about their product had to announce that they were lying to the public. Not that they probably care, seeing as how they have a boatload of money to show for it. As someone I know put it, they invented the next pet rock, and it worked.

And, as for your "Socioeconomic absolutes"? Those words are too big for us "bloggers."

different Guest
different Guest

You really seem like just another mindless drone who is trying to impress others by telling them what 'trendy' is. You are only reminding me that you wish me to perceive my world in your terms of socioeconomic absolutes and then you imply that I could be upset. Oh, BTW, do you think that someone could gain a "reputation" as a "blogger"?

Chasen_Marshall
Chasen_Marshall

I'm not going to argue fashion, because I have little to no fashion sense. As for the useless bracelets, I'm pretty sure that when sales go from $8K to $35M in the span of a couple years, and celebs and athletes are wearing them (yes, some of whom are paid), that makes them trendy. It's clearly more than the sponsored few who are wearing them. Don't get upset, I'm just pointing this out.

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