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Chairless chair, exoskeleton to go: A chair you can wear lets you sit anywhere

Introducing the Chairless Chair, an armless chair that you can wear, allowing users to take a seat wherever they may please. No more standing on crowded subways or leaning against bus stops, no more pacing outside of busy restaurants awaiting your table. No more stalking mall benches and gobbling them up while our significant others shop inside of stores that we have a nil interest in.

Actually, the new Chairless Chair has much better potential uses – such as for production line workers or for work areas where a full desk and chair would take up too much space.

Explains CNN: “It's like a chair that isn't there, but magically appears whenever you need it. It's called the Chairless Chair and you wear it on your legs like an exoskeleton: when it's not activated, you can walk normally or even run. And then, at the touch of a button, it locks into place and you can sit down on it. Like a chair that is now there.”

A Zurich-based company called Noonee developed the chair. Their web site calls it a “Chairolution®,” with the tag line: “Bringing forth a new era of wearable ergonomic leg devices. Our vision is to bring state of the art wearable leg assistive devices to everyone.”

Twenty nine-year-old Keith Gunura, CEO of Noonee, describes the thought behind his invention:

“The idea came from wanting to sit anywhere and everywhere, and from working in a UK packaging factory when I was 17,” Gunura says. “Standing for hours on end causes a lot of distress to lower limbs, but most workers get very few breaks and chairs are rarely provided, because they take up too much space. So I thought that the best idea was to strap an unobtrusive chair directly to myself.”

Here’s how it works:

The device straps on to the back of a user’s legs and feet, and no part of it ever touches the ground, even when seated. A belt attaches around the hips and thighs, and the wearer sets the device to lock into a comfortable position. A “variable damper” supports the person’s weight when they are in a sitting position; the weight is directed down to the back of the user’s heels, then out to the floor.

The chair does not interfere with standing, running or climbing, and it operates on a single 6V battery.

“In addition to resting your leg muscles, it also provides optimal posture,” adds Noonee’s co-founder Bryan Anastisiades. “It keeps your back straight and can reduce the occurrence of bad postures for both healthy workers and those recovering from muscle related injuries.”

What's your take? Would you wear one? Sound off below.