Mad Dogg Alleges Patent Infringement by Peloton

Mad Dogg Athletics is suing Peloton alleging that the public company is using core features of Mad Dogg’s products, including its Spinner Blade bike (pictured). (Photo courtesy Mad Dogg Athletics.)

Mad Dogg Athletics (MDA), Venice, California, has filed a suit against Peloton Interactive for patent infringement, Mad Dogg Athletics announced on Dec. 14.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for Eastern District of Texas, alleges that Peloton’s Bike and Bike + infringe on patents held by Mad Dogg Athletics (Nos. 9,694,240 and 10,137,328) because the products allegedly use many core features of Mad Dogg’s products, including its internet-connected computer screen, its adjustable handlebars and the ability for riders to input data.

“We revolutionized the indoor cycling category in 2008 with the eSpinner bike, which featured the world’s first touch-screen display designed to bring instructor-led coaching and power training straight to the rider’s home,” John Baudhuin, co-founder and CEO of Mad Dogg Athletics, said in a media release. “Peloton has built its business by freeriding on Mad Dogg’s patent-protected innovations. Peloton cannot compete in the category that Mad Dogg created by trampling on Mad Dogg’s rights.”

Baudhuin and Johnny Goldberg founded Mad Dogg Athletics in 1994, developing the Spinning indoor cycling program and the Spinner line of indoor cycling bikes using the ergonomics and geometry of a real road bike with rigid steel frame and components found on traditional road bikes such as aluminum cranks, shift levers to adjust resistance, clipless pedals, aerodynamic handlebars and racing saddles.

Mad Dogg contends that Peloton, which was founded in 2012 and announced on Dec. 21 that it was purchasing Precor, was created to “exploit the indoor cycling market that MDA created.”

Peloton launched its first bike in 2014, featuring a touch-screen to allow instructor-led, on-demand streaming of classes for home use.

“Without permission from or compensation to MDA, Peloton has built a multi-billion dollar business based in large part on MDA’s pioneering patented inventions in the indoor cycling market that MDA founded over 25 years ago,” the lawsuit states.

Mad Dogg has asked the court to block Peloton from using the technology that it alleges is Mad Dogg’s and is asking for cash compensation.

Club Industry has reached out to Peloton for a response to the allegations and will update the story if a response is received.

Peloton had filed a lawsuit in September 2018 against Flywheel accusing Flywheel of using proprietary Peloton technology to stream classes and track performance on its Fly Anywhere at-home bike, which Flywheel began marketing to consumers in 2017. The suit also alleged that Flywheel investor Michael Milken attended a Peloton private investor conference to poach Peloton’s business and technology concepts.

Peloton and Flywheel settled that lawsuit in February 2020. Per the settlement, Flywheel acknowledged that its Fly Anywhere Bike infringed on Peloton patents and agreed to cease all instances of infringement within 60 days.

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