You have probably heard of standing desks and ergonomic chairs. Chances are you’ve even tried a few. But have you heard of a desk that lets you work flat on your back? It’s not a fantasy. It’s a real thing and it’s shipping next year.
Called the Altwork Station, this is not your normal computer desk. It’s not even really a desk, not in any classic sense anyway.
Instead Altwork is a workstation that, according to the company, allows for your computer screen and keyboard to physically conform to your needs. This means that instead of you adjusting your position to use your computer, Altwork adjusts your computer to work around you
There are a number of configurations Altwork can achieve to allow you to sit, stand, collaborate with colleges and, yes, even recline flat on your back. It’s a configuration the company calls the “Focus” position.
Altwork isn’t exactly an ergonomic workstation though.
Instead, the focus for Altwork is placed on the idea that it’s healthy to change positions throughout the work day. A concept the company claims that most experts support.
That might make sense if you want a workstation that allows you to stand up and move around throughout your work day, but what are the benefits to actually laying down to work, you might ask. Well Altwork has an answer for that:
“While there is no formal ergonomic data we know of regarding the Focus (reclined) position our Altwork patented technology provides, many experts believe a large part of the health benefits from standing come from keeping the torso and legs at greater than 135 degrees apart to allow blood flow vs. the 90 degrees that a traditional chairs require.”
Here’s more in a company video:
So basically this means standing or laying flat, the benefits are the same. Or at least that’s what Altwork claims. You might have to be the judge of that.
All studies aside, Altwork is a curious device not to different looking from a dentist chair. Albeit a more high-tech dentist chair.
Measuring around 30-inches wide and 5-feet long, the company claims it can fit through most doorways and offices. It has mounts included that can hold a laptop and up to four screens as long as you don’t exceed the 35-pound weight limit. There are, unfortunately, no cup holders, a sad oversight.
The actual desk portion of the workstation has a steel layer under its surface. There is also a magnet kit included that you can mount on your keyboard and a specialized mousepad. These items together help keep your keyboard and mouse in place when Altwork is in its fully reclined configuration.
Shipping for the Altwork station starts mid-2016, first coming to the West Coast of the US with availability to the rest of the country and international shipping to follow later in the year. Pricing is starting at $5,900, though early adopters can get up to $2,000 off.
With a price tag of almost $6,000, you have to admit that so far this is a pretty pricey proposition and probably beyond the means of many. But it may be something to look at someday when prices come down?
Image via Altwork