From California comes a proposed class action lawsuit centered on Tumbleweed and parent company Implus Footcare LLC’s “RockTape” brand of athletic tape, which a consumer alleges is falsely represented by the companies as a product that can “treat numerous common injuries, improve and enhance athletic performance, reduce or delay fatigue” and provide pain relief.
The 45-page case explains the defendants’ athletic tape belongs to a group of products known as “kinesiology tape” or “kinesio tape.” Kinesio tape, the suit goes on, is not wound around a particular part of the body but instead is pre-stretched and then stuck to the skin above an affected area. According to the plaintiff, the defendants have made a concerted effort to prey on consumers in search of a product that’s not only effective in treating injuries but can go above and beyond what traditional athletic tape can provide.
Through “creative and aggressive marketing efforts,” the defendants, the lawsuit alleges, charge a premium price for athletic tape that the scientific community has determined provides none of the purported benefits touted by the companies.
“Despite this substantial price premium, RockTape is no more effective in treating sports and non-sports injuries than the significantly less expensive standard athletic tape (and it may in fact, be less effective),” the complaint reads.
The plaintiff says he was experiencing knee pain during workouts and purchased RockTape to treat the condition based on the defendants’ claims about and representations of the product. Though the defendants claim RockTape stands apart from other athletic tapes in that it “lifts the skin away from muscles, which increases blood flow,” the plaintiff alleges he fell for the companies’ health-benefit claims, finding the tape’s apparent effect to be akin to that of a placebo effect.
“Unfortunately for consumers,” the suit says, “the pain relief, performance enhancement and injury treatment claims made by Defendants are false, deceptive, and misleading. RockTape is not the panacea it is claimed to be by Defendants.”