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CHICAGO (CBS) — What if a simple bracelet could make you stronger, more flexible and ease your aches and pains?
Well, some special wristbands claim to do just that. CBS 2′s Mary Kay Kleist introduces us to some true believers.
Among them is Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose. His silicone wrist band has a Mylar hologram that is supposed to emit a frequency that works on the body’s own magnetic field. Companies like Power Balance and EFX make the bands.
Josh Zaffino is a personal trainer and wears his 24/7. In fact, he wears two power balance bands.
“I felt that when I looked down and I had this Power Balance, that’s gonna help with my balance, stability and strength, that any obstacle that was in front of me wasn’t much to handle,” he says.
Perhaps the biggest obstacle for Josh was his painful torn meniscus. He says he opted out of surgery and instead has been wearing his power bands, which he thinks has made the difference.
Patrick McCusker started wearing his band about a year ago, the same time he started training with josh.
“I am being healthier, and this is a reminder to do all those things to be better and healthier,” he says. “Yeah, that works for me.”
Some experts are skeptical.
“There is nothing there to suggest that it would have any benefit,” says Joshua Blomgren, a doctor of orthopedics at Rush Medical Center.
While there is no scientific data to back up the companies’ claims, people are still buying them for $29 each. CBS 2 asked a couple of people to try on a wristband and see if they noticed anything.
Theresa Buckley, who has Parkinson’s, has an issue with balance. She said she could feel a difference while wearing a band.
Thomas Walters had the opposite reaction to his experience.
“Absolutely unimpressive, for me — maybe it is a psychological thing,” he said.
Power Balance says the concept is based on eastern philosophies. The company said in a statement the band won’t make you stronger than you are, but is designed to help you feel your best.
EFX says it hopes to begin independent, scientific studies soon.
Both companies claim less than 1 percent of people who buy their bands ask for a refund.