asian lady working out in gym

FAKE GYM ADS: How to Spot Them

With the increase of health-conscious people in Australia in recent years, comes lots more ads from gyms telling you how “superior” their facilities are.

So how can you defend yourself against misleading claims and identify genuine ones so you can improve your health?

WHAT A MISLEADING AD LOOK LIKE?

Let’s begin by getting familiar with how misleading ads are structured. 

“UNSURPASSED”

If a gym claims that it is “unsurpassed”, it means that there is no other gym that could provide excellent and fast results like this. 

This in itself claims it is the best when we all know, there is no “perfect” gym. 

When a product is at least as good as the other options there is in the market, then compelling descriptions like unsurpassed may be used to denote that it is way better than the other competing names while telling the truth and not lying.

“SPECIFIC” CLAIMS

woman doing yoga on rocks with ocean viewFor sure, if somebody would come up to you, claiming that their strength program was above other programs, you won’t pay attention to the whole propaganda. 

But once your claim comes with ‘reports’ and scientific evidence, it may have a different impact since reality bites in.

The thing that makes this wrong though is the fallacy of omission. 

Yes, reports and scientific pieces of evidence are there. Unfortunately, there are still false claims if these scientists were good friends with the advertisers. 

Then it’s still biased statements and reporting that will emerge from that while no lies were told. Therefore, this can still be considered a misleading ad.

FAST RESULTS

Here’s another false claim in all its representations. May it be repetitive exercises, diet regimen or physical performance, fast results never happen. 

Everything about having a fabulous physique involves a great deal of time. Your body needs time to adjust to a change in eating habits and preferences.

DIRECT EVIDENCE

Some gym advertisements pack big words into false information without providing actual evidence. 

For example, a gym might claim that their particular routine of “incline presses” taking advantage of “plyometric” techniques “dramatically” increase “pectoral muscles” size via “anaerobic” exercise. 

But no tangible proof can claim that this is true. It is intentionally misleading by having a sentence filled with words the general populace is unfamiliar with to sound more scientific.

PUFFERY

Sometimes, gyms puff themselves up and throw bragging claims; most of which get ignored because of the superlatives it uses. 

An example is a before-and-after photo showing a person’s transformation from skinny to buff- but either obviously photoshopped, having 2 completely different people, or an unrealistic amount of time in between.

An average consumer would know that it’s something to be ignored because it is unexplainably overstated. These claims are often not taken seriously.

WHY YOU NEED TO KNOW THIS

What we should understand about these misleading ads is the fact that it is not just misleading one person, a particular group, or community. 

What matters most is not who it is misleading, but the integrity of advertisements and the message it carries. How it will be understood regardless of the language it uses is imperative as it conveys the message to reasonable consumers.

It’s challenging to say that any of these advertisements are wrong when many of them are “technically” not. They are intentionally crafted in a way to allure you and make you buy.

Thus, you may spend more than you should on an inferior facility and not see the health benefits you were looking for.

Make sure you do your research and arm ourself against misleading ads to ensure you find the best gym for you and see the best results.

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