In case you've spent the last year living under a standard old office desk, workstations that encourage us to spend some of our day standing have exploded in popularity of late, due to the fact that not spending all day planted on our backsides is good for our health. But is standing still all the time that much better? A California-based startup says no, and has developed a balance board dubbed the Level aimed at those already aboard the standing desk train who may be getting a little too comfortable.
Fluidstance, the company that has developed the Level, says the solution is intended to force subtle movement, but not so much as to distract you from your work. By demanding that the body make subconscious adjustments to maintain balance, it says the Level increases your heart rate and demands a rate of lower leg motion comparable to what you get when walking.
UPGRADE TO NEW ATLAS PLUS
More than 1,500 New Atlas Plus subscribers directly support our journalism, and get access to our premium ad-free site and email newsletter. Join them for just US$19 a year.UPGRADE
The company does get more specific. It claims an increase in average heart rate of 15 percent compared to a sitting position and an increase in motion of more than 20 times that of standing at your desk.
The board itself appears much like classic balance board, a kind of single-person see-saw used for everything from circus acts to injury rehabilitation. But by optimizing the device as a tool for the workplace, Fluidstance hopes to appeal to a largely sedentary working population. Crafted from military grade aluminum with a laminated wooden finish on top, the board measures 26.5 in (67 cm) long and 12.2 in (31 cm) wide, and weighs a total of 7.5 lb (3.4 kg).
And judging by the crowdfunding campaign, which wraps up toward the end of this month, it won't take too long to get things moving. Already the team has attracted more than US$160,000 in pledges after initially setting a goal of $40,000. This isn't uncommon for standing desks and related products, with solutions like the StandDesk and even table-top options like Lift passing their funding goals many times over in the last year.
For some, especially those who are quite content sitting down to work, the idea of balancing on one of these things while trying to type will seem a bit much. But if you've already adopted the standing desk philosophy and feel like you could use a little help keeping your legs moving, then you can head over to Fluidstance's Indiegogo page where pledges of $289 will put you in line for a Level of your own. If the rest of the campaign runs as planned, the company says shipping will begin in May 2015.
You can check out the team's pitch video below.