[Startup News] This Singapore Based Startup is Helping People Stay Fit While Working at Their Desks

Benerva Suarez
December 13, 2019

We have grown increasingly sedentary with time, our lack of movement opening gates to a host of illnesses such as strained spinal cord, heart disease, muscle degeneration, diabetes, and colon cancer. Recent statistics state that an average person sits for at least 12 hours a day, leading to the inevitable 3.2 million deaths a year due to the lack of physical activity. While office-workers cannot let go of their seats and adapt a fitness lifestyle all of a sudden, they can surely adopt a more sustainable solution such as the use of smart furniture.

A Singapore-based startup known as Fitterlab is now offering smart office furniture including a sit-stand desk and a desk bike that can help office workers get things done while staying in shape. Though there are a plethora of sit-stand desks in the market to choose from, Fitterlab offers the world’s first smartphone app-controlled sit-stand desk that is more advanced and more accessible when compared to a conventional sit-stand desk.

The global scientific community, alarmed by the ill-effects of prolonged sitting has now coined the term “sitting disease” to characterize the “metabolic syndrome and the ill-effects of an overly sedentary lifestyle.” A study headed by Dr. Emma Wilmot from the University of Leicester found that the onset of diabetes was strongly linked to prolonged sitting. What’s more, even if you hit the gym fairly regularly, you may not be completely immune from the perils of prolonged sitting every day.

“People convince themselves they are living a healthy lifestyle, doing their 30 minutes of exercise a day. But they need to think about the other 23.5 hours,” said Dr. Wilmot.

According to scientists and researchers, implementing ‘easy changes’ that include standing at meetings, or for that matter, adopting a smarter method of working by minimizing the time spent sitting is a great way to keep healthy and steer clear of illnesses. 

Fitterlab’s fitness+ furniture

Founded in 2017, Fitterlab is a joint venture of forward-thinking engineers and developers who saw the dangers associated with prolonged sitting and the lack of a modern as well as technologically advanced solutions to tackle the issue.  

“We had a hard time finding smart, ergonomic, fitness-enabled work furniture that allows us to offset the dangers of a sedentary lifestyle while working. We feel that work is unavoidable – but we can change our work environment and our work furniture. So, we set out to create a new concept of smart fitness+ furniture where you can work and keep fit at the same time, at your office or your home,” said Sandy Song, founder & CEO of Fitterlab.

Fitterlab's sit-stand desk.

Most conventional sit-stand desks come with a select few height settings on the button-operated panel attached to the desk itself. This is where Fitterlab’s smart furniture hits the ball out of the park. 

Fitterlab’s sit-stand desk comes with a smartphone application (available on both Android and iOS) offering a manual as well as an automatic mode for adjusting the height of the table. While the manual mode allows users to control the table height, the automatic mode is a more nuanced offering that lets users set the table height to switch between both standing and sitting at specified intervals. 

You can also make use of the Fitterlab app’s calendar mode to adjust the table height according to your schedule for the day. 

Anticipated global expansion

For a long time now, the furniture industry has not evolved to accommodate the needs of modern-age problems. Now that the world’s fourth leading global risk factor for mortality is physical inactivity and a sedentary lifestyle, it is high time to pay attention to smart furniture solutions offered by futuristic startups such as Fitterlab that propel a fitness lifestyle across all fronts of life. 

The latest market analysis revealed that the global standing desk market is experiencing a double-digit growth and is all set to hit $2.80 billion by 2025, meaning that smart furniture startups such as Fitterlab see an exciting growth prospect and an expanding market in the immediate future. According to Fitterlab, the company will be showcasing its app-controlled smart electric standing desks at CES 2020 with the aim of entering the US market. The exhibition is supported by Enterprise Singapore.

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