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General Information:Livestrong is a relatively new brand but uses derivations of existing designs that Johnson has been producing on their Horizon, AFG, and Vision brands for years. We are glad that they didn't try to reinvent the wheel because they are really getting their act together quality and production-wise and make a value-oriented, well designed collection of units.

Manufacturing Philosophy:We gained a much greater understanding of Johnson's business in the past few years with our visit to their headquarters and facilities in Taiwan and China. Johnson is the most integrated manufacturer of fitness equipment in the world. This can be both good and bad. The good is that you are in control of almost all aspects of production. The bad is that you are in control of almost all aspects of production. If you mess up, there is no one else to blame. They really seem to be focused on doing things the right way, so it appears that this is a case where it is good overall. We were impressed with their quality procedures, design, and testing processes, and the reviews will reflect our better understanding of their operations.

Company Outlook : We think that Johnson is going to make a big splash with Livestrong. The product looks very good in relation to the price that is being charged. We were wrong last year when we said it can't hurt to have Lance Armstrong on your team, but it hasn't seemed to hurt the sales of Livestrong. Johnson is known for product support.