Sep 06 2012

Shuzi Magic Power Bracelet

Here we go – yet another magical bracelet claiming to improve balance, energy, and performance. This time you get to pay $100 for a black piece of cloth with a small chip inside. From the Shuzi website:

Shuzi (pronounced shoo-zee ) utilizes a proprietary chip from the United States, which is programmed to resonate with your cells’ natural frequencies and causes your blood cells to separate thereby creating a better blood flow which can lead to more oxygen through out the body.

“Resonate with natural frequencies” – they can’t even be bothered to make up their own ridiculous pseudoscientific technobabble. Improving blood flow by separating blood cells is also an old scam. We have evolved very robust mechanisms to ensure optimal delivery of oxygen to our tissues. There is no simple way to “improve” this in a healthy person. These mechanisms may not be adequate in someone with advanced disease affecting the pulmonary or cardiovascular systems, neither is a little wrist band going to have any effect in such serious conditions.

The company claims that their product improves balance. Why would increased oxygen delivery improve balance specifically? It might have something to do with the fact that the balance demonstration is an old scam – a parlor trick to convince the unwary that something real is going on.

My favorite part of websites selling blatant nonsense is the tab “how it works.” You know this is going to be fun. In addition to the above claim, they write:

No battery/energy source is required. Many people ask us how this is possible.
Here is our official explanation:

It is a well known fact in the scientific community that ALL atoms are in a constant state of motion. This includes physical object atoms, such as the atoms that make up a desk or chair. More specifically, every atom in a physical object is known to “vibrate” or oscillate back and forth.

Logically, utilizing e=mc2 every atom has mass and the speed of light (c) is a constant, therefore there must be energy in every atom. Through our proprietary programming process, our chip emits sub-atomic energies powered by an atom’s inherent energy. Coincidentally, this energy stimulates the separation of blood cells in the wearer’s body which can help increase blood cell circulation. While the scale of vibration is considerably smaller for nano-vibrational technology, it is inherently the same in definition, to any other object that vibrates.

They quote Einstein and E=mc2 – it’s so sciencey. Yes, all atoms vibrate and have energy (unless they are at absolute zero). That’s called heat. None of this explains how their chip, or anything, can emit “subatomic energies” (what energy, exactly, is that?), and how this energy is transferred to the blood of the wearer. How is a computer chip “programmed” to do this? Are they saying that the energy of atoms responds to the programming inside a computer chip?

The physiology makes as little sense as the physics here. They say that the vibrational frequency (by an amazing coincidence) separates blood cells. How does that work? Red blood cells are flexible and move quite nicely through even capillaries that are no bigger across than the blood cells themselves. In healthy individuals the red cells flow without difficulty. Forcibly separating them (if that were even possible) would not increase blood circulation.

This is nonsense built upon nonsense used to sell a cheap bracelet for $100.

At least these companies seem to be burning themselves out more and more quickly. Not that these claims needed to be tested, but a recent news article reports: (here is there protocol)

The Merseyside Skeptics Society bought two of the bracelets and removed the chip from one of them. A semi-professional rugby player then took 100 conversion kicks, half with each bracelet, but without knowing which was which.

The results showed the chip had made little or no difference to his performance.

Skeptics are now playing whack-a-mole with the sports band industry.  New products keeping popping up, with a rotation of recycled pseudoscientific gobbledygook, usually promoted with the same old parlor tricks. We need to keep the pressure on to make sure that the public understands that these are a scam, and keep prodding the appropriate regulatory agencies to do their job to prevent fraud.

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