MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — Anybody who works from home knows the feeling:
"We get in the zone, and we forget about what we're doing. Pretty soon you get up and it's 8 days later,” said Shane Gildnes, founder of StretchClock. Evening first met the Mount Vernon software developer in 2013 – he worked from home and needed something to remind himself to take breaks from the screen.
So he developed and launched StretchClock - a timed desktop reminder to get up off your...chair. You set the interval, and at the appropriate time, a video of a person quietly doing a short low key stretch pops up for you to follow.
“They're targeted to provide relief specifically to desk workers. And these are no sweat exercises. They're nothing that you're going to get into a big huff and puff over, it's really low impact stuff," explained Gildnes.
When the pandemic hit, a legion of new work-from-home desk warriors boosted sales.
“With a break reminder service, people feel better, they're more productive, they're more focused when they're working, they're able to get more done so when they're done working, they feel better.”
Each stretch is about minute long, designed to be done in business attire, and shot in an outdoor setting, complete with water and bird noises in the background.
And especially appealing in these COVID times - locations range from the PNW to Hawaii to Croatia. Leg lifts are somehow better when done overseas.
“We like to call it a one-minute vacation every hour,” laughed Gildnes.
The locations have motivated some people to do even bigger moves: “We received mail a little while ago that said ‘StretchClock got me through every day until I could finally move to the Pacific Northwest'."
And sad pandemic bonus – these anonymous folks sporting business casual and doing arm raises in the great outdoors might be some of the healthiest company you can keep right now.
Happy Blursday. And keep stretching.