FastCompany Magazine

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This 4,400 square-foot desk creates hiding holes for an escape within the office.

One creative agency decided to reinvent the idea of a “desk” entirely. Instead of installing a metal slide or set of pinball machines, the New York-based Barbarian Group built one giant “superdesk” out of plywood and a single pour of resin. The whole thing stands at 4,400 square feet, and undulates throughout the space, creating regular desk-like slabs, but also oddly-shaped nooks and crannies.

“We really wanted everyone sitting under a desk, but we also wanted to create spaces where people could escape to.”

  • Left: Joanna Coles, editor in chief of Cosmopolitan, takes time for analog tasks like reading the paper at her treadmill desk. “It mitigates the exercise panic that sets in around 4:30.”

  • Right: New Yorker writer Susan Orlean is a devotee of the treadmill desk. “I’m not sitting down at all any more to write.”

Some incredibly productive people have treadmill desks. Should you?

Perhaps you’ve heard: Sitting is the new smoking. For years, a growing body of research has shown sitting for extended periods of time, the way most of us do for50 to 70 percent of our lives, can cause a host of issues from lower back pain to diabetes to an increased risk of death.

The Stir Kinetic Desk automatically and strategically adjusts between sitting and standing positions based on data it collects about your habits over time. The Stir Kinetic Desk is simple to operate, because all of its controls are packed into a little built-in touchscreen on the desk’s bottom left-hand corner. After you initially store your preferred sitting and standing heights, double-tapping on the touchscreen will cause the desk to move up or down. 

We got to try one out at the office. Watch.

Fast Company Insider: As we’ve mentioned before sitting is the new smoking. Meet Cia Bernales and Dan Asadorian, two Fast Company employees who have taken that message to heart.

Cia first started standing because sitting at a desk all day was hurting her back. She kept her standing desk, partially for physical relief and partially out of pride, after someone bet her she couldn’t stand for four months straight. The marathon stander won the bet and is still standing six months later.

Dan is a bit like the Freedom Tower in that you can see him from most places in the Fast Company office. His new-found standing practice has made him a beacon of healthy work habits … and snackage. You can see him here munching on some rock candy. 

The third image is from Cia’s desk. Meet her giant Rottweiler Atticus whose blog you can read here.

“When you concentrate on your inhale or exhale in a yoga posture, or on the sounds of a mantra in meditation, you are fully in the here and now. It’s only by slowing down that you can observe things as they really are, including yourself. Being in the now is hard work, but it also helps to give you some detachment and perspective on the dramas of your daily work and life.
'I would be interested in seeing studies conducted on the physical and psychological well-being of anyone trying to start up a company,' says Poikos CEO Nell Watson. ‘It’s easy to lose your grip on stuff, physically and mentally. Yoga is a powerful way of re-centering oneself and putting oneself back in the body and also in the current situation that you are in and not in the situation that you are worrying about.’”
Why coders need yoga

When you concentrate on your inhale or exhale in a yoga posture, or on the sounds of a mantra in meditation, you are fully in the here and now. It’s only by slowing down that you can observe things as they really are, including yourself. Being in the now is hard work, but it also helps to give you some detachment and perspective on the dramas of your daily work and life.

'I would be interested in seeing studies conducted on the physical and psychological well-being of anyone trying to start up a company,' says Poikos CEO Nell Watson. ‘It’s easy to lose your grip on stuff, physically and mentally. Yoga is a powerful way of re-centering oneself and putting oneself back in the body and also in the current situation that you are in and not in the situation that you are worrying about.’”

Why coders need yoga