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Are Titanium necklaces valuable?

Do the colorful necklaces worn by professional athletes meet their manufacturer’s claims?

In Men’s Fitness magazine, I came across an interesting article entitled “Are Baseball Necklaces Bogus?” The piece describes the colorful titanium-based necklaces seemingly sported by every player in the game. The manufacturer, Phiten, a Chinese company, states the benefits include energy boost, quicker injury recovery and relief of muscle aches.

From their product catalog:

“Our products work with your body’s energy system, regulating and balancing the energy flow of all the internal structures. Most times people will reach for chemical and medical solutions to block out physical discomfort. Phiten offers a way to alleviate discomfort, enjoy a speedy recovery or even counteract fatigue in a unique, 100% non-medicated way.”

PhitenWhile in New York with the Cardinals at Citi Field this past summer, a very athletic woman representing Phiten was working her way through the clubhouse with brochures and cards along with sample necklaces and wrist bands. While I certainly don’t look like I could be confused for uniform personnel, I was issued a set as well (see photo of my still-unused items). Soon, clubhouse attendants and ballboys alike were attired in the officially MLB-licensed team-colored and logoed Phiten products.

In their brochure, Phiten touts sponsorships from Josh Beckett, Brandon Webb, Justin Morneau, Tim Lincecum, Joba Chamberlain and Justin Verlander, among athletes from other sports.

Their product lines are vast, from Body Supports, to Titanium discs, tape and strips, to massage lotion, and of course, a wide variety of necklaces and bracelets.

What’s the catch?

Again, from Men’s Fitness:

“No scientific evidence exists to back up Phiten’s claims, and the “aqua-titanium” technology the company uses to dissolve titanium into water isn’t approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.”

No one seems to know whether these items work or if are they just a fad-driven movement fueled by superstitious athletes.

Any opinions out there?

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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