5 Reasons Why I Hate Fitness Infomercials

5 Reasons Why I Hate Fitness Infomercials


tv eats your brainThis is a guest post written by Jonathan.

It’s a good thing I never watched shopping channels as a teenager. If I had, I might have believed that losing weight is all about buying a belt that vibrates against your stomach, a dumbbell that you shake back and forth, or a machine that let’s you do crunches while massaging your back.

Oh… I would have probably believed that all it takes is 6-10 minutes a day and I will have a lean, chiseled chest, flat abs, and muscular arms and shoulders. Unfortunately for me, I lost weight by running, lifting weights, and eating properly. It took a while and it was hard, but I have kept the weight off for over 12 years.

The problem is that a lot of people fall prey to misleading fitness infomercials that are becoming more and more common as we’re about to enter the holiday season. It seems that when you open the TV or surf the web, you get hammered by ads for this contraption or another.

I’ve had enough with fitness infomercials. I think that the only thing they make thin is people’s bank accounts. Here are 5 reasons why I hate fitness infomercials:

1.Using already fit models – When you see a fitness infomercial, you will usually see very fit and sexy models showing you how they use whatever product is being promoted. This creates the illusion that these models owe their body to this product.

The truth is that these models are hired to appear in the ad-based on their current looks. I am sure that nearly all of these models were already fit before they ever set eyes on this fitness product. Otherwise they wouldn’t have been hired.

You need to remember that these models do not provide proof that the product the infomercial sells really works.

2. Using suggesting ads – There seems to be a marketing process in the fitness world which was started by the Shake Weight a while back and is now being replicated by the Free Flexor (and more will likely follow). The process goes like this:

  • Create a suggestive ad.
  • Put it on YouTube.
  • Watch it go viral.
  • Get a lot of attention for your product.
  • Sell a whole lot.

For the Shake Weight this has worked exceptionally well. Over a million items have been sold. This “formula” did not go unnoticed and is now used to promote the Free Flexor, a flexing dumbbell gadget of dubious qualities.

I don’t like ads that try to sell by controversy and suggestive marketing. Either talk about the good qualities of your product – provided there are any – or make a better one and promote it in an honorable manner.

3. Too much hype – It seems that no fitness product is ever promoted without it being made with “special technology” or “groundbreaking research”. It’s usually hype. Most of this “research” is bogus or misstated. You don’t really need anything fancy to lose weight and get fit. All you need are some weights, some free time, and the willingness to work hard.

4. Exaggerated claims – One of the quickest ways to ruin your motivation is to fall prey to exaggerated claims that cannot be met. If you think that training for six minutes a day with any device will get you lean, you’re sorely mistaken.

When you get your hopes pinned on one of these products you’re probably headed for failure and disappointment. This may discourage you from continuing to try to lose weight in a more sensible way.

5. Overpriced – For the price of a single ab machine you can buy a pair of dumbbells, stability ball, and a jump rope. They may not look as fancy but they get the job done. Many times, products sold on infomercials are overpriced. They create a burning desire with clever marketing, but they usually don’t deliver the kind of results that warrant such a price.

Finally, let me just say that you can find some useful products that are promoted via infomercials. However, most of what I have seen is pretty useless. You don’t need expensive machines to get fit. All you need is dedication, desire, and patience. Stop falling for infomercials. The basic rules of fitness and fat loss apply no matter what shady marketers want you to believe.


Tags: , , ,

About the Author

Jonathan Dunsky lost 30 pounds and has kept them off for over 12 years. He blogs at World Of Diets where he writes about fitness, nutrition, and weight loss tips for men and women.

7 Enlightened Replies

Trackback  •  Comments RSS

  1. Tom says:

    Good postEverybody wants that quickfix, that only takes 30 sec.But it only last 30 sec in the other end.I agree with you Jonathan, weight loss takes time and keeping it off takes alot of smart work and smart living.Thanks for the post

  2. Fitness Easy says:

    I like your article,and I am 100% agree with you.I know very well how difficult is to keep your body weight.
    What they show as at TV is not always the way,to get rid off fat.Its all about marketing for the products they want to sale.
    The perfect atlets or models they put to promote those products,leave as to understand they used and are where they are.
    I will suggest you to keep on writhing good posts.
    Regards Alex

  3. I couldn’t have said it better myself. Succinct and oh-so-true!

    • Jonathan says:

      Hi Alexandra,

      I was actually worried I was being too harsh. I guess you can’t be harsh enough (-:

      • James says:

        Definitely not harsh enough. They just target massive numbers in the hope of making one time sales ridiculous products that don’t work (not for long anyway).

        Just think of all the hunger control pills, how long can you sustain your body by not eating enough? Not very long.

        The only method that really works is to live a healthy lifestyle (cliche I know, but unjustly so), eat a balanced diet on time and without overeating, be active and you’re sorted.

        Weight Watchers know this very well, and that’s why they’ve been around for so long and is very successful. Their philosophy is all about working as a community to motivate it’s members to stick to a very simple system that’s arguably much easier to grasp than trawling through nutritional info.

        A few rules I would recommend:

        1. If it has just one unique selling proposition – move on
        2. If it promises rapid weight loss – move on
        3. If it advertises massive price cuts like there’s no tomorrow – definitely move on (it’s not worth the money, even if it does work – which it won’t for long)

  4. A great post and all the points you mentioned are genuine. I agree fitness Infomercials are overpriced, hyped, extra claims and false claims.
    There should be some control about false and exaggerated claims.