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Peloton: Another Perspective on the Now Famed Commercial

December 18, 2019

Much of the media world has been abuzz about a commercial recently released by Peloton.

Peloton, a company that produces a high-end stationary bike, with on demand streaming fitness classes released a holiday ad depicting a young wife that receives a bike from her husband for Christmas.

The ad has since caught quite of bit of criticism. It's been called sexist, classist, and I've even heard the word dystopian. Wha...?

I watched it, once and didn't think anything of it...

Heard the hype and watched it again, still not sure but OK.

Then I kept hearing about it, so I decided to listen to the criticism and watch it again (and again and again) to try to understand what the hubbub was about.

Here's what I saw. A young woman got exercise equipment for Christmas, started exercising, was timid at first but later started feeling great and closes the commercial with gratitude for the gift she had received.

Again, what's the hubbub?

My thoughts:

  1. Maybe she asked for that Peloton bike. I have asked for ridiculously practical gifts in the past and LOVED it when my husband actually got them for me. (tennis shoes for my birthday, a crock-pot for Christmas)
  2. For many women money is often-times the number 1 source of stress. She may not have felt comfortable buying this for herself but REALLY wanted it. This could have been her husband's way of supporting what she wanted.
  3. She's skinny, so what? Exercise has health benefits for all ~ it doesn't matter what size she is.
  4. She says she's nervous. I would be nervous starting a new spinning journey too! That doesn't mean he forced her to do it. By the way: I've actually never done a spinning class BECAUSE I'm too nervous.
  5. She asks if the audience is surprised as she continues to do it. Well, yes that's not too off base either. One year my husband got me a treadmill for Christmas, yes, he got me a TREADMILL... and although I was happy about it (I had asked for it), it soon came to be called the "dust collector". I guarantee I did not use that treadmill for a full 5 days in a row, maybe ever... but it doesn't mean I'm not happy to have it!
  6. And the video closes with her feeling gratitude and talking about her "Fitness Journey". "A year ago, I didn't realize how much this would change me," she says. This last comment is the one that I can get behind the most, and timing could not be better here. 5 weeks ago, I started my own very regimented fitness journey. Since then, I've felt less stress, less fatigue, I feel more comfortable in my own skin and I'm just outright HAPPIER and more confident. Go figure that this could happen in real life and on a commercial.

Bottom line is, as with anything in life, if you listen to something or someone expecting to hear something, you most likely will. If you watch this commercial expecting that her husband is a rich dude that wants his skinny wife to be skinnier, that's what you'll see... BUT if you see a young mom that wants an in house way to get fit and feel better about herself, hopefully you can see that too.

Life's too short to expect the worst out of everything. In 2020, hopefully we can all open our minds and look at things a bit more objectively. Maybe then we can start to find solutions to some of our cultural problems.

In the meantime, Happy Holidays and I'll be back next month!

What do you think?

To check it out on YouTube, search for: The Gift That Gives Back, Peloton Bike Commercial