The latest issue of The New Yorker features a piece by Susan Orlean called
The Walking Alive: Don’t Stop Moving
Admittedly, I was weary of the article when I saw the subtitle, “Don’t Stop Moving.” One misconception about treadmill desks is that they must be used from the moment you start working until you turn off the office light. People who test drive treadmill desks and walk on them for hours-on-end typically don’t end up sticking with them. You should vary your activity and walk as is comfortable and effective for you.
My concern about Orlean’s article subsided, however, as I plowed through her insightful piece on why she traded in her Herman-Miller Aeron chair for a treadmill desk. In a subsequent interview, Orlean had some particularly great nuggets of treadmill desk gold (http://www.scpr.org/programs/take-two/2013/05/17/31835/treadmill-desks-could-be-coming-to-an-office-near/). She describes how working while walking is different from working while sitting:
“I never get that kind of anxious, kind of jittery feeling that I get when I’m sitting at a desk and the sentence isn’t coming and I feel like my leg is jiggling and I’m tapping my keyboard and chewing gum.I just have a lot of nervous energy, and that doesn’t happen now that I’m walking.”
Orlean talks about the many studies showing that “just sitting itself puts your body in a kind of hibernation.” I like this hibernation image, especially because sitting at a desk often leads to an unintentional afternoon nap. It is important to remember how quickly you can go into hibernation, too. Almost immediately upon sitting, your metabolism crashes, good cholesterol starts dropping, and poor posture ensues.
As much as she loves her treadmill desk, Orlean observes that at a price point of as much as $4,000 (there actually are even more expensive ones out there), treadmill desks are out of reach for many. She notes that you can buy a used exercise treadmill for as little as $75, but overlooks the ergonomic and logistical problems of putting a desk with an exercise treadmill.
With Rebel Desk soon there will be no need to splice and dice a DIY treadmill desk. The Rebel Desk will be affordable and fit many budgets.