December 29, 2015
Standing desks have gained a lot of traction in the past couple of years, but unless they also offered a way to transform into a traditional desk, they have generally lost their appeal for everyday use (because research has shown that they're dumb anyway). The ones that did allow for transformation into a traditional desk are pretty great, but what if you can do much more with your desk? Sonoma Valley startup, Altwork, wants to do just that.
Desks haven't changed much over the years. Ever since parchment and pen, there have been desks – and we've been using them about the same ever since. Chairs on the other hand have gotten better – more cushioning and more ergonomic; however, at the end of the day, they too have been pretty much the same for the last 200+ years. Standing desks were a big improvement, and brought true innovation to what could be considered a stale market. Everything was fine, until Altwork basically said, “Well, what if we could work lying down?”
The Altwork Station is designed for those of us who spend a majority of our day at our desk. It allows for four different transformations: traditional desk, standing desk, collaborative desk, and the crème de la crème, the focus desk. Focus mode is really where the magic happens. In focus mode, you can recline the chair back to almost parallel with the floor, and the desk and monitor comes with you. Your keyboard, mouse, and other gadgets stay put thanks to magnets directly in the workstation.
While lying down while working seems like a sure-fired way to take an unintentional nap, once you wrap your mind around the fact that you're working, there can be a lot of benefits. The main one: less strain on your back. It's also a great way to relieve stress and tension in your neck and shoulders, which, without you noticing it, allows you to focus more intently on your task at hand.
Being able to recline to an almost flat position is great, but the Altwork Station is really focused on a complete system. Different tasks are better for different desk styles. For example, you might want to go with the standing option in the morning to help get the blood moving and help with early morning drowsiness. The collaborative desk gives you options when you have people around that are part of a project and you need space to discuss or display projects.
This convenience and technology does not come cheap however. With an early bird price of almost $4,000 and a full retail price of $5,900, the price can be a little startling. This admittedly large price tag is due to the high-quality materials used in the desk, and the complex engineering problems Altwork had to overcome to let the work station quickly and easily change positions. All controls for the station are on the desk and you can adjust everything about the desk, and even set presets once you find your comfort zone for each.
And, if that doesn't work for you, you could also consider the nap desk.
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