Reebok’s EasyTone Not So Easy
Uh-oh. It seems all shape-up shoes were not created equal and the FTC is all set to let you know about it to the tune of 25 million clams.
The guilty party, Reebok had advertised their EasyTone walking shoes, RunTone sneakers, and EasyTone flip-flops as being gifted with certain sole technologies, like “micro instability” air pockets, that toned the tush and other problem areas. The truth, however, at least according to the Federal Trade Commission is that the shoes do no such thing, and in light of this has won a cool $25 mil in a suit for false advertising.
The FTC’s complaint also alleges that Reebok falsely claimed that walking in EasyTone footwear had been proven to lead to 28 percent more strength and tone in the buttock muscles, 11 percent more strength and tone in the hamstring muscles, and 11 percent more strength and tone in the calf muscles than regular walking shoes.
Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, David Vladeck, says: “The FTC wants national advertisers to understand that they must exercise some responsibility and ensure that their claims for fitness gear are supported by sound science.”
Jaime Bianchi, a lawyer for the FTC, chimes in: “If a company is going to claim that a product has secondary effects that are related to the use of the product other than the product itself, like health related, they need to make sure they have adequate support for the claims,” since Reebok could not do so, you get your clams back. So if you spent the $60 – $100 on Reebok’s EasyTone footwear you can get your money back directly from the FTC or through “a court-approved class action lawsuit.”