The first time I tried a standing desk inspired by Gina Trapani it was a heavily modded Ikea Jerker. I faithfully followed her build apart from one thing – the mat. She got a standing mat through Amazon but discarded it fairly quickly. I was a little cheaper and pulled out a foam sleeping roll that I’d picked up for a pound from the car boot. Needless to say the mat didn’t last long and although I later tried different shapes and styles of mats it was never something that I put a lot of time or money into.
A few weeks ago the nice people at Project Ergo delivered the Kangaroo Standing Desk that we reviewed last week and as an extra brought in the GelPro Anti-Fatigue mat. I didn’t see the point but I was willing to give it a go and after a couple of weeks I never want to go back. The GelPro is a 81 by 51cm foam mat with rounded corners and a slight slope beveled edge to the central flat area that measures 72 by 41 cm.
The mat is simplicity itself to use – put it in front of your standing desk and stand on it. The mat feels very slightly squishy but supportive to socked feet. The best way I can describe it is as very resistant memory foam – it gives a little but then molds and holds. After a couple of weeks standing on it I’m sold. I’m used to my feet feeling tired and achy at the end of a day and the GelPro cut that back considerably and left me feeling much better.
Included in the box: GelPro Mat
Paid Extras: None
About Let’s Gel, Inc
Let’s Gel is a US company that makes the GelPro as well as a range of other standing mats. Surprisingly they didn’t start with standing desks but with a mat the founder created for his wife in the kitchen. They make mats for standing desks, commercial, medical and industrial settings as well as their core residential business. They’ve sold over a million mats since 2005 in the US and are probably the worlds largest specialist manufacturer.
Project Ergo is the UK supplier of GelPro mats and also handles shipping to Europe.
The GelPro mat seems like a very simple product but there are a few important points if you look closely. Firstly the base is covered with a cross hatching that makes it surprisingly grippy to the floor. I’ve a laminate floor and the mat stays where you put it – try pushing it around and it does not move at all.
- Target age range: Adults, Older adults
- Target gender: Unisex/gender neutral
- Target audience: People who stand a lot in one place – standing desk users primarily but it would work for anyone standing in one place.
- Optimized for indoors use. It’s somewhat moistureproof – for example dropping a cup of water on it would not ruin it but letting it sit in a wet environment would not be good for it at all.
Environment & People
Certification: National Floor Safety Institute “Superior high traction bottom surface” and Cradle to Cradle.
Let’s Gel make the mat with what they call “Bio-Foam”. This is a patented Dutch material they licence that is very similar to Expanded polystyrene (EPS). The big difference is that EPS is made from fossil fuels – oil – where as Bio-Foam is made from plant extracts. While being durable its biodegradable and can be industrially composed.
The GelPro mat is not something that you absolutely have to have – but if you’re going to be standing for long periods of time on hard floors your ankles knees and feet will thank you. At £75 the mat is among the more expensive options available but this might be one of those things where the extra money is justified.
The review unit I received wasn’t new – it had been used by David at Project Ergo for a year and a half but if he hadn’t told me I wouldn’t have known – the time didn’t show on it at all.
Product dimensions: 81 x 51 x 2.3 cm
Thickness: 23mm at centre
Materials: Polyurethane “BioFoam”
Manufactured: In the US
Warranty: 5 years
A flat floor to put the mat on – hard wooden or tiled floors will work best.
After several years of various standing desks and trying and rejecting multiple mats the GelPro AntiFatigue Mat is the first one that actually makes a difference – and a significant one – for me. Add to that decent eco-friendly credentials and if you’re using a standing desk or just standing up a lot on one place on a hard floor you should be considering this. Recommended.
The review is based on the GelPro Anti Fatigue Mat kindly provided by Ergo Project.
Click to read more about our eco icons and access icons used in this review. This article was first published on 19th May 2016.