• Jun 8, 2010
Get a job, get in shape. Or something like that. Whatever you want to call it, Volkswagen is taking the rather unusual step of putting all of the newly hired production line workers at its new plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee into a mandatory fitness program before they can begin working.

Why? Good question. According to Volkswagen Chattanooga spokesman Scott Wilson, such bodily training will help the automaker build better midsize sedans by helping employees "perform at the highest level of professional excellence." But wait, there's more...

It seems that the area chosen for the plant is known for its Little Debbie snacks and MoonPies, and that apparently leads to a higher-than-average body mass index (who you callin' fat?). According to Jason Guess, the VW plant's manager of safety, health and wellness, the program is having an impact. In fact, some new hires have reportedly lost as much as 30 pounds after three weeks of training.

We have only one question. Does VW have any plans for a blogger rehabilitation program?

[Source: USA Today]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 56 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Come on Autoblog you could have done better with the cover pic for this article.
      Should of been a still shot of them doing jumping jacks in the yard of the Assan plant in the movie Gung Ho (which is a classic)
      Tracy
      • 4 Years Ago
      As said before, this is strength training and flexibility. Not sure which auto plant dumbass worked at, but if your on line building cars, you won't be very fat. Working in quality control, off line side maybe- possible. Those people will lose plenty of weight when the line gets cranked up to it's production level. Everyone I started with and hired in after I did lost weight to an extent, without the ''exercise'' program. I remember one woman that would be considered morbidly obese when we started, a year later was as skinny as I was. She probably lost a 100 lbs. Since we're overpaid, let's see some of you do it. It's one thing to do a job at your pace, another to do one at a pace determined by management for you. Management averages a time for each station of jobs, meaning a low option car will have a little extra time, a high option will be a little short. How many low option cars do any of you buy. See my point. It's rare to see a stripped car come through. As far as being in the south, people down here earn what we make, we aren't depending on a union to hand it to us. Unions were great in the past til they got just a little too greedy for them and they're members. VW just followed Mercedes-Benz, Honda, Hyundai, Toyota, Nissan, and Kia. Those are just in Miss., Tenn., Ala., Georgia. BMW is in South Carolina. Toyota also has another plant in Texas. Most anyone that has a decent job earns they're money, or they're gone. We all depend on each other to get the best product out to a customer, if your not pulling your weight, we will discuss it, probably before management gets to the discussion. Slackers aren't tolerated.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Tracy
        Oh Tracy dear, we don't need a book.
      Cpeter133
      • 4 Years Ago
      You know, if we are going to tie jobs to weight, then I think we should also require mandatory IQ tests--nobody under 110 should be given any job that requires anything more cerebral than a hammer or shovel.

      If we can target fat people, why can't we target stupid people? They cause more accidents and deaths than merely being fat does.
      yadisilva7
      • 4 Years Ago
      What happen if the worker is a body builder or a muscular person?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Im a monster vw lover and I live 60 miles south of chattanooga and had no idea they built a factory there......Im slipping....LOL
      • 4 Years Ago
      yes, same as Jamie Oliver, first you give up your freedom, VW is enslaving their workers, having people give up their freedom for a job, next you will have to drive the VW car to have a job there. Sorry, this is the LAND of freedom, sorry VW, kiss my ass, I am buying an AMERICAN car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        if you bought one built there you would be driving an AMERICAN car, one more American than a Malibu!
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ chris comisar

        Are you serious? You honestly believe it is your God given right to be a lardass? If so, it is my God given right not to pay for your diabetes/heart/other weight related issue treatment when you get sick from being a lardass. Why is it that whenever a company tries to actually do something about the epidemic that is obesity, people like you see it as imposing on your rights as a citizen. If you really believe the US is a free country, you are smoking more crack than you should. Nothing is free, and your "right" to do as you please is tempered by the fact that the other 320,000,000 people have the same rights to decide whether we should bail you out when you can't be bothered to get off your fat ass and exercise and eat properly. Wise up pal.
      Sprinkle Cookie
      • 4 Years Ago
      Obviously some of you have never tried to lose weight. And obviously many of you think us "lardasses" are stupid and can't do the job. I'm so glad you're all so perfect that you can sit in judgement and criticize people. You know, we "fatties" don't sit around and talk about "pencil-necked geeks" or call people "bony-asses." When are we going to get off the playground??
      • 4 Years Ago
      A very good friend of mine works in client retention (employers with 51+ employees) for a very large health insurance carrier. During open season they call their clients to renegotiate insurance premiums. An example she gave me was that one company had a 10% increase in the number of employees diagnosed with diabetes, as a result the company's health premiums had to go up. The individuals can't be named so the increase in premium either gets eaten by the company, or is spread across all employees.

      So for VW they're seeing it as more expensive, and even more pricier down the road, to hire fat employees who may develop health conditions down the road. But I'm sure the EOE doesn't allow this type of discrimination. Rephrase it as "mandatory" and now I can write you up and lawfully terminate you for not attending.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'd like to see this idea spread (no pun intended) to police departments!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Do you need blue eyes and blonde hair too?
        • 4 Years Ago
        LOL! I was thinking the same thing.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Tomorrow belongs to me!
      • 4 Years Ago
      You'll never get new hires and collect SSI if we all live forever. Be fat happy and die if thats for you. Off to my $7.03 an hour job. With my college education in rocket science.
      Don't tell me a pepsi and a twinkie does not make you happy over a pile of peas.
      • 4 Years Ago
      LMAO, Florida fans always knew they are all fat bestards in Tennessee! Go gators
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