I’ve been writing about standing desks for a few years now and there’s one issue that easily ranks as the #1 concern i’m asked about. That would be the fear of pain and fatigue associated with standing for any long period of time. Not many people typically enjoy standing around much. It’s not very comfortable, and often results in fatigue and back or leg pain.
Why would one willingly expose themselves to standing more when a chair is available?
Because chairs are the equivalent of prison cells for your body. You can’t move. Health and vitality relies on movement. You need to free your body from it’s imprisonment and move around *most of the time* to improve or maintain your health.
Now back to comfort and reducing pain.
How do we stand and move more and reduce the discomfort at the same time? Well, standing more often strengthens your body and joints which results in less fatigue over time. But there’s a shortcut — that’s a standing desk anti-fatigue mat.
We’ve talked about standing desk mats before — and they’ve come a long way since the boring rectangular ones made for standing at your kitchen sink.
I’ve had the opportunity to review a brand new one called the Butterfly Mat. It’s built with function in mind, but is the first of kind (that we’ve seen so far) that also focuses on the aesthetics. Your workspace is where you spend a lot of time and should inspire you, it should be an aesthetically pleasing space.
Below are some of the advertised features:
➤ The calculated terrain encourages healthy movement while supporting the user with incredibly comfortable environmentally-friendly supportive foam
➤ Contoured beveled edge design and no-curl edges prevent tripping hazard
➤ The massage points activate blood flow and engage more muscles than simple standing mats are able to
➤ Butterfly center “teardrop” further drives movement and the ankle range of motion
➤ Easy hands-free edge position lets you slide the mat on various floor surfaces
➤ Thickness ranges from from 7/8″ (min) to 1 2/5″ (max) to enable the user to adjust their standing posture so as not to become fatigued by standing in one position
➤ A front contoured beveled edge design provides a foot prop for split stances and is specially designed according to the ergonomics for standing comfortably
We spent a few weeks on this mat and can confirm that the foam is, in fact, extremely comfortable. Not too firm and not too squishy. Feels best without shoes. We each spent several hours at a time standing on the mat and had no aches and pains in the joints or heels.
Looks wise, the butterfly shape is clever. It provides an ideal amount of space for movement, which in turn seems to somehow inspire movement. The smaller bumps didn’t do much for me but I definitely found myself balancing on one foot on the center bump occasionally — or going for a stable wide stance, depending on my mood.
The beveled edge is almost a requirement now. I wouldn’t recommend getting any mat that doesn’t have this feature. Very important and the butterfly mat has it on all sides.
Besides that, it’s lightweight so it’s easy move and put away. Overall it’s a very fun, economical, and capable mat that will definitely do the job while looking good at any standing desk.