A Shocking “Exercize”

By: Suzanne Junod, Ph.D., and John Swann, Ph.D.

Suzanne Junod and John Swann

Suzanne Junod, Ph.D., and John Swann, Ph.D., holding FDA artifacts.

In this second installment of FDA’s new history video series, the FDA’s historians venture into the “vault” to explore the Relaxacizor, originally sold in beauty salons as a device that stimulated and relaxed muscles, but subsequently marketed as a passive exercise machine.

Ads for the device assured users that they would lose weight while building muscle mass, a promise that was, of course, too good to be true. FDA took legal action against the company and by the early 1960s succeeded in having the devices removed from the market.

Keep an eye out for the reference to the TV show, “Mad Men,” which included a faux advertising campaign for Relaxacizor in the show’s first season.

Enjoy your visit to the FDA History Vault.

If you missed it, watch the first video – an introduction to the series here.

Suzanne Junod, Ph.D., and John Swann, Ph.D., are FDA Historians.

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