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Product: Health & Beauty
Advertiser: Smovey Health
Medium: Leaflet, Online - Company Website, Online - Social Media
ASAI Code 7th Edition: 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10, 11.1, 11.2, 11.4, 11.5, 11.8(a)
Advertiser Own Website:
Home page – “Why Smovey” Section:
Our brain is divided in two halves. The right half controls feelings and fantasies. The left half handles critical and analytical thinking and speech and communication. Smovey activates and coordinates both halves through bilateral movement and development.
Through specifically-targeted balance exercises, you can refind the connection throughout your musculature and conquer sudden movements in your daily life, which helps to prevent fails and injury!
On the inside of the palm and on the back of the hand are reflex zones for almost all the organs and glands of the body. Smovey stimulates these reflex zones through subtle vibrations and has a very positive effect on these organs and glands.
Due to the construction of the Smovey rings, they produce a frequency of 60Hz. This is the same frequency that occurs naturally in humans.
The weight of one Smovey unit is, at rest, about one pound. The dynamic movements created through swinging generate a centrifugal force which increases the weight up to around 11 pounds.
This new form of aqua training for all ages and target groups improves endurance, strength, and flexibility, relaxes the spine, joints, ligaments, and tendons. And it’s FUN!”
What is Smovey Section – Science and Benefits:
“What are the benefits?
Burns Fat. Smovey activates 97% of the body’s muscles.
Vitalizes over 100 million cells in the body.
Fights cellulite. Using smovey strengthens & tightens the connecting tissues that cause cellulite.
Mobilizes the digestive system.
Accelerates your metabolism.
Detoxifies by massaging and relieving the lymphatic system.
Improves the immune system and the work of the thymus gland.
Strengthens the heart and the cardiovascular system.
Firms the arms, stomach, legs, and buttocks.
Relaxes the muscles– loosens tensions in the neck, shoulders, and back.
Bones are strengthened to prevent osteoporosis.
Reduces the symptoms of illnesses such as Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis(MS), Alzheimer’s, and arthritis
Neurological Benefits of Smovey
Parkinson‘s is a complex motorical disorder caused by an obstruction in the part of the motor nervous system that is responsible for background movements such as gestures and facial expressions. This system also controls repetitive movements, as needed for walking.
We still go on fours, swinging counter synchronious with the arms. This resonance is reduced unilaterally when being affected by Parkinson‘s.
This leads to a destabilization of the entire body and to a failure in the symmetry of movement and the body axis.
Through regular exercise with the smovey the uniform resonance of the arms is trained and thus leads to an induced stabilization.
Normally people do all of our manual work in a small physical area of about 60 cm wide, which usually is just in front of our body, hardly ever reaching a high above horizontal or above. Since we are not in the maximum position the joints allow, the joint capsules begin to shrink and freedom of movement is further decreased. By swinging into the maximum allowed joint position your body is able to improved its freedom of movement rapidly. This is usually practiced concerning all three spatial axis of movement.
A cardinal symptom of Parkinson‘s is twitching. In practice it has been found that the the passage of four balls in a corrugated tube lead to a vibration of about 60 Hz – a frequency that is somewhat natural to our organism. People suffering from Parkinson´s report, that this leads to a significant decrease of twitching.
Since it is the „axial symptoms“ of Parkinson´s like lattitude, change of direction, lie down and roll over in bed, that are seldom positivly influenced by medication, regular training with the „magic rings“ have an essential importance.
The principle applies to ALL neurological diseases associated with a movement disorder. Concerning Parkinson‘s disease and failure of background movement, smovey ® is an integral part of therapy.
Prim. Dr. Dieter Volc
Vienna, 1st of August 2012
Conservative-orthopaedic preliminary remarks!
In keeping with nature’s principle of economy, all organs that are not used will atrophy. Corresponding activation stimuli, which allow the body parts to fulfil their planned functions, counteract this law of nature.
The human locomotor system, which encompasses most of the body, is particularly susceptible to this law which relies on activation and otherwise responds with a general drop in performance along with complaints, aging processes and vulnerability to diseases. The hand as part of the upper extremities is a valuable source of impulses for the entire body. Merely clenching the fists tones the hands, while letting them fall detones. The hands, as well as the remaining parts of the locomotor system, transmit important information to the central nervous system which initiates, controls, monitors, verifies and terminates the motor activities desired by us, using the sensorimotor system in order to conduct essential physical activities.
Simply grasping the training device – the grip is an ancient reflex – has an impact on tone, and not just for the upper half of the body. The composition of the ring-shaped device with its contents amplifies sensory input (perceptible signals) regardless of the movement type, thereby training a unit of the locomotor system that may only be perceived as a side effect but constitutes a prerequisite for physical movement: the generation of stimuli and their life processes that are correct for the respective movement and correspond to the functional needs of the locomotor system. This means the target group for the use of “Smovey” devices includes people for whom sensorimotor functions, and therefore also dexterity and coordination, are of particular importance even in the face of aging.
“SMOVEY” – Vibroswing
The Smovey is a straightforward, effective training tool and perhaps even a therapeutic device. The Smovey Vibroswing is a swing ring system consisting of a spiral tube, 4 steel spheres and a handle system with damping elements. As an orthopaedic specialist, I have put the Smovey to the test and wish to report on my experiences, both with tests conducted on myself and with the application to other people, especially women.
The use of the Smovey is extremely straightforward and intuitive. It awakens an almost childlike interest in novelty and stimulates the play instinct, even among adults. All the people to whom I gave this device started playing with it immediately. Extensive training was not required. One intuitively tries to find the rhythm for the proper use of the Smovey. An almost reflexive correction of posture can be observed while walking with the Smovey. Naturally, this is particularly pleasing for the orthopaedist. The normally protracted explanations of the active principles can be quickly implemented in practice, and work practically by themselves when people use the Smovey.
Whether this is due to the vibration that is generated in the handle (which would be an achievement of the nervous system), or whether it is simply a reaction to the centrifugal mass – both concepts are conceivable.
What is important, however, is the posture and movement correction effect which works practically on its own with very little effort. In summary, the following positive aspects can be identified from an orthopaedic perspective: A better posture, which is associated with reduced strain on the spine during movements, is easy to achieve with the Smovey. Strain on the peripheral joints is also alleviated, since their degree of centring is improved. This is of particular importance in the shoulder region.
The conscious perception of movement, since the Smovey only begins to work well by gradually approaching the correct movement pattern. Awareness of your own movements is surely the first therapeutic step, especially for the locomotor system. Improved proprioception can therefore only be viewed positively.
The Smovey supports a wide variety of different exercises. Motivated by my observations, I naturally sought and tested additional applications. As an active athlete and especially a tennis player, I enjoy the rhythmic mobilisation which is possible with the use of the Smovey thanks to the centrifugal mass and movement. Improving the ability of the spine to rotate, which appears particularly interesting and helpful for tennis players and golfers, is possible with this training device. The Smovey can also help realise improvements in movements above the head, which are used by tennis players during the serve or smash. Positive results in the area of prevention for the most frequent types of injuries, e.g. for a tennis player (spine and shoulder), are therefore surely conceivable.
Mobilisation exercises in the field of shoulder therapy are also conceivable. These could complement physiotherapy concepts, both in working with the therapist and in exercises completed by the patient at home.
In the interest of body action, a type of massage, for example in the back region, also appears like an interesting application. On the one hand, this constitutes very pleasant independent therapy and, on the other hand, it serves as a pleasant introduction to training with groups of all ages. All in all, it appears that an innovation and improvement in the fitness market has been developed. From an orthopaedic perspective, it appears desirable for the Smovey to be popularised and used by the corresponding people.
New and interesting areas of application will surely be found.
Its uncomplicated use and easy handling as well as the convenient size make this device appear highly suitable.
As orthopaedists, we were unable to find ANY disadvantages associated with using the Smovey. All activity can be viewed as positive, and it appears that a highly enjoyable new opportunity has been created here.
Univ. Prof. Dr. Hans Tilscher
Dr. Christoph Michlmayr”
Facebook Post 1 – 03/03/2017:
“Smovey for knee replacements or stiff joints.
By massaging your knees in every direction will not only reduce swelling in your knees it will also loosen them and reduce the stiffness in your knees. If you can massage each knee with smovey for 5 minutes 3 times per day; you’ll notice the difference. I offer a 30 day money back guarantee so you’ve nothing to loose (sic) only the pain. If you’d like any further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org and check out www.smoveyhealth.com.”
A video was included in the post titled “Smovey for knee replacements or still joints”
Facebook Post 2 – 21/08/2017:
In response to a question on a post, Smovey Health responded stating:
“Smovey sets are available to order on our web smoveyhealth.com. Smoveys help people with difference diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer, Arthritis, Back and shoulder pain, back issue, Anxiety, Bowel issue, Dementia, Hip and knee pain, Heart problems, Stroke, Metabolism and digestive system issue, Migraine, MS, Muscle pain, Polymyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis but also improve general health and wellbeing. Please have a look our Youtube channel to find video testimonials.”
Facebook Post 3 – 28/06/2017:
“Smovey is not only great fitness tool, but also helpful for people dealing with various neurological movement conditions. The vibrations generated by a gentle swinging of the rings create a pleasant body sensation and can be used as a mindfulness exercise in regulating stress.
Somatic Experiencing (SE), is a theory and method for healing trauma, developed by Dr. Peter Levine. Based on neuroscience research and observations of animals in the wild, trauma (and chronic stress)…”
A physiotherapist who works in private practice has objected to various advertisements for Smovey Health.
The complainant considered that all posts related to Smovey, where they detail the benefits of smovey, are misleading and false. The complainant said that they searched on pubmed to see if there was any scientific literature on Smovey and they could only find one study of 13 patients who had cancer. The complainant considered that this was too small a sample size in order to make claims of ‘amazing’ and “magic” benefits of Smovey. They also considered that there were no studies relating to Smovey in Parkinsons Disease.
The complainant believed that people with Parkinsons Disease, alzheimers, dementia, multiple sclerosis were vulnerable and would do anything or purchase anything for some hope to a better life/cure. They considered that this meant that a lot of people were purchasing Smovey believing it to be a physiotherapists tool and also that the claims made about its benefits were proven.
The complainant did not believe the claim that Smovey weighed 0.5lbs at rest, increasing to 2.5lbs when it was swinging due to "centrifugal forces", from a physics point of view and considered it was misleading.
The complainant considered that the Smoveyhealth website was full of pseudoscience, particularly the statement that the vibrations enter the hand at reflex points, as they considered that there was no evidence that there are reflex points in the hand. The complainant stated that babies have them which is why they curl their hand around a finger, however, they grow out of them. They considered that the statement that the vibrations travel along Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) meridans had no evidence to support it and that the statement that using Smovey increased the co-ordination between the left and right side of the brain also had no evidence to support it and it was entirely false to suggest this.
Post 03/07/2017 – The complainant considered that there no evidence that massaging with smovey would reduce swelling, loosen knees or reduce stiffness.
Post 21/08/2017 – The complainant objected to this post as it referred to treating various illnesses.
Post 28/06/2017 – The complainant objected to the post on the grounds that there was no evidence to support this.
The advertisers said that Smovey was introduced to them as a “physio tool” from an agent in Austria so she put ‘physiotherapists’ tool on her leaflets. She said that she removed this reference after being contacted by a representative organisation for physiotherapists who stated that the tool was not a registered physiotherapist’s tool in Ireland and was not endorsed by them. She said that she had never misled or gave false information and referred to the fact that she had provided research on Smovey to various Neurologists, including one in Dublin who had invited them in to present to their rehabilitation team, while another in Cork had stated that they were ‘amazed’ at the improvement of one of their patients on using Smovey and was now recommending it to their Parkinsons patients. She provided a copy of an information pack that included details of a study titled “Feasibility, acceptance and sustainability of a movement programme for oncological patients with smovey”.
The advertisers said that the claim that they were misleading vulnerable people was very upsetting as this was the last thing that she was doing. She said that she presented Smovey to people, telling them the benefits that hundreds of people with Parkinson’s in Ireland were getting and that she has written and video testimonials saying so.
She also said that she has neurologists and doctors that have noticed improvements in their patients and she receives such gratitude from the Parkinsons community for all the work she does for them, including free workshops around the country. She said that she provides free classes and demonstrations and offers free online demonstrations to people that can’t make the workshops, to ensure that people are using them correctly. She also said that she offers a 30 day, no questions asked, money back guarantee and the last thing she was doing was misleading people.
The advertisers said that she didn’t lean on the credibility of Physiotherapists to sell Smovey as she didn’t have to as her business was growing from recommendations and word of mouth and that it was people with Parkinson’s that were recommending it to their colleagues. She also said that she had the full support of Parkinsons’ Ireland.
In response to the complaint about the weight of the Smovey ring, she stated that the weight of one ring at rest was about 1 pound and that through centrifugal force created by the swinging motion, the perceivable weight increased in weight and that this was a law of physics. She said that there was no way to prove centrifugal force with Smovey as it was just physics. She referred to the manual which outlined exactly how the product worked.
In response to the reference to the reflex points of the hand, she referred to an article on reflexology and stated that a physiotherapist should know of the existence of such points. She said that by holding the Smovey and moving it, the balls knocked off each other which created a vibration which travels up your arm as the body is made up of 70% water. She said that the vibrations travelled up the body like a ripple effect and this increased circulation. She said that while there was no scientific proof for this, you could feel it the minute you held the Smovey. She said that the person complaining, must have never held one. She said that some of the complaints raised by the complainant were like asking to prove that meditation was good for you, it calms the central nervous system and so does vibrations.
In reply to the complaint about Facebook Post 1, concerning knee massage, she said that she did not have any scientific evidence of this, and that she never said that she had, but that massaging the area, vibrations would go through the area and reduce swelling. She said that there was a video testimonial of a woman stating this and that she has never given a statement of anything that did not happen.
In response to the complaint regarding Facebook Post 2 which referred to various diseases and ailments, she said that there was a testimonial of all of this on Facebook and YouTube under “Smovey Health” and she provided a copy of some of the testimonials.
In response to the complaint regarding Facebook Post 3, which referred to Smovey helping people with neurological movement conditions, she said that the man who invented Smovey had Parkinsons and that she has worked with hundreds of people with Parkinsons that had claimed that Smovey had improved their quality of life. She referred to having testimonials from people with Parkinsons, MS and strokes stating how it had improved their quality of life. She said that she had never stated that there was medical research proving this, however, a Dr of Physiotherapy in Waterford was in the process of studying for a PhD on the benefits of Smovey. She said that most Smovey coaches were physiotherapists, occupational therapists, neurological therapists or fitness instructors. She said that she has three people with Parkinsons who were certified Smovey coaches as it had made such a big difference to their lives. She said that Smovey was also used in the rehabilitation of some of the biggest Parkinsons organisations around the world, Parkinsons UK, European Parkinsons Therapy Centre, PD Warrior, Parkinson Wellness Recovery. She also referred to a Doctor, stating that he was “one of the most famous trauma specialists in the World” and that he not only recommended his patients use Smovey, but that he also recommended that his practitioners become Smovey Coaches. She also advised that she had coached one of his practitioners from Sweden and that she was one of 30 speakers and the only Irish speaker for www.insightintopd.com, which was founded by a Neurphysio who had been using Smovey for the past 18 months.
Finally, the advertisers said that the product would not be supported by Parkinsons Ireland, Parkinsons UK or by people with Parkinsons if they were not getting any benefit from the tool. She again referred to the fact that she offers a 30 day money back guarantee and that if the complaint was made by a person with Parksinsons she would have understood, the basis of their complaint, however, she noted that it had come from a physiotherapist who she considered were objecting on the basis that Smovey was competition to their industry.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response.
While the Committee noted the various testimonials from patients who had been using the tool, the Code stated that testimonials did not constitute substantiation and therefore, any opinion expressed in a testimonial should be supported with independent evidence of their accuracy.
While the advertiser had provided the Executive with an “information pack” that included reference to the one study on PubMed(1) that was carried out on 13 cancer patients, no other independent substantiation had been provided. They did not consider that the claims in the advertising had been substantiated. The Committee also noted that the advertising included references to conditions for which medical supervision should be sought and that evidence to demonstrate that the advice, diagnosis or treatment would be conducted under the supervision of a suitably qualified health professional had not been provided.
In the circumstances they considered that the advertising was in breach of Sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10, 11.1 and 11.5 of the Code.
The advertising must not reappear in its current form.
(1) Title of study: “Feasibility, acceptance and sustainability of a movement programme for oncological patients with smoveys”