Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on LinkedInEmail this to someone

Let’s make one thing perfectly clear: The human body is evolved to run. We survived up the evolutionary food chain to become the dominant species on the planet not by our brains or brawn, but by our tootsies. Cheetahs may sprint faster in short bursts, but we humans win by sheer persistence. Contrary to the popular notion that we hunted with spears and arrows, early humans actually hunted for the most part by simply running down our prey until it was too tired to evade us any further.


So what do we do when we advance a civilization? Pave roads everywhere, drive cars, sit at desks at work and couches at home, and deprive ourselves of the constant daily motion our bodies were built to thrive on. And then we wonder why we have an obesity problem.

So the standing desk has recently become popular in office furniture, and artist Robb Godshaw with Instructables assistant Will Doenlen have now taken the idea a step further literally, as his desk involves not just standing, but pacing along as you work. The difference is that instead of using a treadmill, like most of us with less imagination would do, he went with a giant hamster wheel.


This is the perfect commentary on your work life. Your boss will love refilling your water bottle, changing your cedar chips, and of course paying you in food pellets. If you have the fortune of working in an office building connected directly to your apartment building via an urban skywalk system – these are a thing back east – your life in the Habitrail will be complete. Jokes about what a big wheel you are on the job come at no extra charge.


In all seriousness, this is a fantastic and clever design, and the step by step Instructables guide will show you how you, too, can build your own hamster wheel desk. For those of us who are still working on trying to build a bookshelf that doesn’t lean, these might possibly go on sale soon. Others have even hinted that attaching a generator to this setup might even be a bonus, as it only requires a small trickle of current to keep a laptop charged.

It looks like tremendous fun to use. It also looks like it would somehow work in space, but perhaps we got that idea from watching Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey.