Better Back Posture Correction Device

better backKatherine Krug started looking for a better back pain solution after spending several years sitting at a desk developing the failed goal setting app, Everest. As the COO of that company, she found herself slouching at her desk all day and night, causing a lot of back pain. She did some research on back pain and came up with Better Back, a posture correction device that forces you to sit with correct posture by tilting the pelvis into optimal position. Unlike Everest, Better Back was a big success. She raised over $1.6 million on Kickstarter with a modest starting goal of only $12,500 and was the first solo female entrepreneur to break the million dollar barrier on the site. Katherine pitches Better Back to the Sharks in Shark Tank episode 720.

Back pain is a big problem: over 50% of human beings everywhere suffer from back pain. It's also a profitable niche – over $86 BILLION is spent annually on back and neck pain relief! I spoke with Shark Tank Blog contributor, Doctor of Chiropractic, developer of Lo-Bak Trax, and partner of Lori Grenier, Dr. Roland Berthiaume to get his opinion on this product. He told me “this product is great for people sitting at desks all day, and yes it works, but I will say, it's nothing new. I've seen these around for 20 years. I will be interested to see the pitch.”

That got me looking around on the internet and I came across a very similar product called Nada Chair, which has been around for about 30 years. Apparently, Nada Chair customers created quite an uproar over Krug's Kickstarter and there was a lot of public controversy surrounding her campaign. In Krug's defense, she claimed the back pad, knee pad, and strap design is completely different than the Nada Chair. Some Nada Chair users also liked the improvements to the design. To close out the controversy, the owner of Nada Chair had this to say:

Friends and NadaChair Supporters,

As Katherine Krug’s BetterBack KickStarter campaign winds down, I wish her nothing but success. It’s great to see the concept I created evolve and its audience widen. For that, I say kudos.

Many of you have been with me since I started NadaChair in 1986. Without your endorsements and support, I would not be where I am today. You have helped tremendously. For that, I am grateful.

Today, I am asking you to pledge $1.00 to Katherine Krug’s Kickstarter campaign https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1123408990/betterback-perfect-posture-effortlessly/video_share. Why? This will allow you to comment on her page before the campaign closes tomorrow. Congratulate her and wish her well from all of us who have owned and benefited from this invention for years or decades. We would like this to be our moment of warm congratulations to all the backers of this project who we hope will finally find Love-at-First-Sit.

If I am the “King of Slings,” I think I might have met the “Queen of Midwives” in Katherine Krug. She leaves no doubt that the cord is cut. So now the time is finally right to raise a toast.

Here’s to a bright future.
Chairs!
Victor Toso
NadaChair Founder

PS: For those who may feel the need to defend NadaChair, there is no need for any further defense. Thank you for your support.  From VentureBeat.com

A good posture is the best preventative medicine for back pain and Better Back, according to many reviews and testimonials, works as advertised. Good posture has been proven by researchers to boost your mood, motivation, concentration, metabolism, immune system, and confidence. By retraining your body to have correct posture, many people will reduce or eliminate back pain. The best part is, it starts working as soon as you put it on and eliminates the need for special chairs. Wearing it for just 15-20 minutes a day should instantaneously correct bad posture. Better Back obviously proved there is demand for the product – they shipped over 20,000 on the Kickstarter alone – and it's readily available on Amazon.

My Take on Better Back

I have near constant back pain related to an injury I sustained over 20 years ago. To combat it, I have a stretching regimen I do every morning before I even get out of bed. We have a Tempurpedic mattress (a GODSEND) and I often wear my PostureNow to help sit up straight. I used to have a very expensive, ergonomic desk chair, but it fell apart recently (after over 12 years and a lot of duct tape). Lately, I've taken to sitting on a yoga ball and typing on the coffee table for at least part of my day. When I saw Better Back, I ordered one immediately!

What sold me was the idea that no special (or expensive) chair is required to get into a good posture position. I got the concept and wanted to try it. It's scheduled to arrive the day this episode airs and I'll have a review on the product on this site soon. Anything that helps me with my back pain is something I want. For that reason, I am IN!

Will Sharks Back this Business?

“Sales trumps all,” as Mr. Wonderful once said. Better Back has sales, so Krug is in a good position with the Sharks right out of the gate. She also has a very big market and a modestly priced product that many people need. If the Sharks aren't worried about the Nada Chair controversy, then Krug should field multiple offers.

Mark may bow out, since it competes with PostureNow to a degree, but Lori is likely to jump on this, for the reasons I just mentioned. She outbid the other Sharks on Squatty Potty, which corrects posture while pooping, and she already has a non-competing back product in her portfolio (the aforementioned Lo-Bak Trax which was NOT on Shark Tank). This product SCREAMS “Lori” and in the promo video for this episode she says “it's deal time!” I think this is the deal she makes.

About Rob Merlino

Entrepreneur, auteur, raconteur. Rob Merlino is a blogger and writer who enjoys the Shark Tank TV show and Hot Dogs. A father of five who freelances in a variety of publications, Rob has a stable of websites including Shark Tank Blog, Hot Dog Stories, Rob Merlino.com and more.

Comments

  1. Heather Madison says:

    I am so excited to see this episode! I bought a Better Back through Kickstarter and it has completely changed my life. I used to go to a chiropractor every week and this does so much more for me. Can’t wait for Friday.

  2. Bob Jantsch says:

    I wonder if the developer of better back has a patent for the device. I purchased one of these devices 10-15 years ago at a massage therapy convention. I will have to look for it to see if the original was patented. Interesting that the sharks did not ask about a patent on this device as it certainly is not an original design.

  3. Garry Duncan says:

    It’s been done before. I’ve had a Nada-Chair for nearly twenty years.

    I’m wondering what the difference is…

    http://www.nadachair.com/

  4. Looks like nada chair to me

  5. Coco Jetson says:

    There are several different versions of Better Back posture helper on Amazon already … And there have been for quite awhile, some for over a year. Ms. Krug sold the pants off you guys.

  6. I’ve had a Nadachair for probably 10 years. I was surprised to see the betterback copy on ST and not have Mr. Wonderful attack it as something that has been done before and that he could easily copy. And then Lori got sucked into funding it.

    Doesn’t ST have a team of people that research products first, so they can provide background to the Sharks and keep them from making silly mistakes? Sheeze.

  7. Karen Krug didn’t “come up with” BetterBack. She stole the design from NadaChair. She even removed the review she had written at Amazon right before launching her Kickstarter to try and cover up what she did, but NadaChair clients called her out for selling someone else’s idea as her own. She still continues to do so on shows like Shark Tank, but ask her and she’ll try to sell you a line about how she “improved” on the design. Take a look at them though, it’s quite obviously a total rip-off. and was reported in a number of online articles.

    • As stated in the post, the creator of Nada Chair wished her well, rip-off or not. If there are patent issues, Lori will dig them up in due diligence.

      • There’s no doubt the patent is expired, since the NadaChair has been out for more than 15 years. Doesn’t make it right to steal someone else’s design and sell it as your own. Legal… yes. Ethical. No. When called out on her claims to have “come up” with this product herself, when people even found that she had purchased and reviewed the NadaChair, which it clearly was stolen from, she basically admits that’s the case but throws out this ridiculous claim about all the “improvements” she made when nothing essential about the product was changed. We’re talking about a product that has had a very high review rating on Amazon for years, not one that users had issues and complaints about that needed fixing. I’ve only found one previous NadaChair user that said anything positive about it (it costs a bit less… as any knockoff would). Different knee pads does not a different product make… and there are already a number of her OWN customers that complain about it causing knee pain as well…. because the straps and knee pads have NEVER been a cause for complaint with the Nadachair. So basically the sharks conveniently didn’t bother to ask about a patent like they do for EVERY other investor, when she can be knocked off and undersold in exactly the same way (there already is someone else that has done exactly that, and is selling their version on Amazon for $20 less). As for the comments from the owner of NadaChair, that is highly suspicious, many of us think she may have paid him off for putting that statement out there and ceasing to tell NadaChair customers to call her out on this, as before that, he was certainly very vocal about the product being a rip-off of the NadaChair. I certainly wouldn’t blame him for doing so, since again, there wasn’t much of a legal leg to stand on, and unfortunately KS terms wouldn’t allow HIM to run a campaign for the product even though they ignored their rules to let the BetterBack one continue to run when it clearly wasn’t a “new” product. It opens the door to allow anyone else to find products with expired patents, rebrand them and use KS to fund their knockoff. I can’t help but wonder what the next great idea Ms. Krug will decide to “improve” on as her own, now that she’s been so successful getting away with this one.

      • Thought I’d share that the creator of Nada Chair has apparently been deluged with emails from upset customers who saw this, and he definitely was not at ALL happy about it either and most certainly did NOT take a “best of luck” approach in the email he sent out, even mentioning “seeking counsel regarding an appropriate corporate response to this situation”. I think a really interesting response would be bringing HIM onto Shark Tank to see if another shark wants to go up against Lori with the same product, but the one made by the actual inventor….but that’s probably not likely to happen, since it would let other ripoffs think they can go on the show as well.

  8. Morgan Sharp says:

    This is NOT a unique product. I bought this exact product over 15 years ago.
    I have also recently found this in Bass Pro store.

    This is either a knock off or a remade product.

    Lori, this can not be patented.

  9. Bruce Nordstrom says:

    I am so glad to see mention of the NADA chair/ support /vest/sling……….What I think is interesting is that
    I thought on the tank this woman stated she had come up with the idea ? i think she might have even said there was nothing like this on the market ? I immediately thought it was the NADA. Ethics anyone??

  10. Telling the Truth says:

    Katherine Krug is a FRAUD! She poses as a Huffington post writer to ask Health and Wellness professionals to contribute to an article she was doing on Posture for Huffington. She then stole everyone’s content to use in an Ebook “Better Posture” that she gives away when you buy her Nada Chair rip off.
    Huffington Post, Lori and everyone else: see her for what she really is and FIRE HER!
    This devious thief needs to be sued, penniless and in jail!!

    • Yeah she NOW claims that she gave full credit to the inventor of the NADA chair from the beginning, when there was NO mention of it at all on the KS page until people started complaining to them about it not being a new and unique product, and she sure doesn’t mention on Shark Tank that it wasn’t her original idea. Reviews on Amazon that include complaints about knee pain continue to mount (this seems to be her primary claim for why she didn’t like the NADA chair
      and clearly can be an issue for her product as well….funny how that works if it’s SO different) and she now has people attacking reviewers that leave less than positive reviews with anonymous accounts, that are so ridiculously transparent in who they are originating from. She’s quite a piece of work.

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