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Why just use a regular shoe to exercise when you can use a shoe designed to burn extra calories and tone your muscles? According to a recent New Balance lawsuit, because the shoes don't have any extra fitness benefits, and may even cause injury.
According to a New Balance class action lawsuit against New Balance filed Monday in Boston, New Balance used deceptive marketing tactics to promote its True Balance and Rock & Tone toning shoes. New Balance has claimed that the shoes increase "muscle activation" by at least 27 percent and the number of calories burned by 10 percent. However, those claims may not be true or verifiable, according to the class action lawsuit.
According to the lawsuit, New Balance advertising is "false, misleading, and reasonably likely to deceive the public," Reuters reports. While the lawsuit is for at least 5 million dollars, there is much more on the line, toning shoes have become a major industry within the sneaker business worldwide.
Class action lawsuits are common in consumer cases. In order to approve filing a lawsuit as a class instead of individually, a court analyzes whether the potential class meets certain criteria, such as whether it is more efficient to try the many claims together, as they arise from the same events and are seeking similar remedies.
Class action lawsuits can potentially benefit consumers with minor injuries, because it would not be cost effective for them seek legal redress on their own. However, in many class action lawsuits, the consumers come away with something of minimal value, while the law firm takes home a sizable fee.
In the case of the New Balance class action, the attorney on the case says it is a matter of tricking consumers."They thought they were buying one thing, but they actually bought something else," Tina Wolfson, a lawyer for Pashamova said, the Patriot Ledger reports. "We want (New Balance) to return the money to all the members of the class and we want them to correct their advertising."