Do you work long hours at a desk? If you do, you’ll be well aware of the stiffness that comes from sitting still for too long. But that’s not the only danger of being too sedentary.

Doing regular activity—even just standing—for a few minutes during extended periods of sitting time can help keep you feeling your best. However, when you’re engrossed in work, study, or a movie, it can be easy to forget to move. Wakeout is designed to get you moving regularly, and here's how it works.

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What Does Wakeout Do?

Sitting for long periods is thought to slow the metabolism, which affects the body’s ability to break down fat and regulate blood pressure and blood sugar, which can lead to obesity. Standing and moving regularly can help increase focus and productivity, according to the University of California Berkeley.

Wakeout is an app designed to encourage you to take regular active breaks from your desk. It contains a huge variety of short breaks to provide a light-hearted moment, refuel you, and get you ready to go again.

Wakeout is targeted at-home workers as a virtual companion to remind you to take a moment for your health and well-being.

Download: Wakeout for iOS (Subscription required, free trial available)

How You Can Use Wakeout to Be More Active

When you first open Wakeout, you’ll find you have to sign in before you can use the app. The For You tab offers a tailored series of Wakeout workouts—"wakeouts"—to suit the current time of day. Opening the app during a working morning will invite you to take part in wakeouts to stand and stretch or to boost your confidence.

In the afternoon, wakeouts may include the following:

  • Couch yoga and pilates routines.
  • Coffee break routines that involve moving a cup of coffee around your desk. (These are designed to exercise your arms rather than spill hot beverages on your laptop.)
  • Standing caffeine, which is a series of stretches and movements to be done at your desk.
  • Healthier workday routines, including Healthy Eyes, Hand Health, and Tension release sequences.

Each time you open the app, there is a fresh set of wakeouts to tackle. Each individual activity lasts for just 15–30 seconds. The autoplay option encourages you to keep moving for longer by queuing up a sequence of activities. You can also opt for jaunty music in a variety of genres to accompany your movements.

Browsing the Wakeout Catalog

In the Browse tab of the app, you’ll find the full range of Wakeout workouts. There are wakeouts not just for the time of day but also for your location, including home, travel, work, and outdoors. You can choose wakeouts by sitting or standing, and find specialty wakeouts for students, relaxation, and therapy, too.

If you’re feeling particularly playful, venture into the Fun and Silly category to find a range of one-minute activities such as chair dancing, kitchen fun, and animal-themed movements like hamster self-cleaning, gorilla strolls, and bunny hops.

Enjoy Timed Exercise Breaks

A Pomodoro timer allows you to focus on your work knowing that Wakeout will remind you when it’s time for a break. You can customize presets so that your break is spent having fun rather than browsing the many choices. There’s also a handy Reminder tab that allows you to schedule exercise breaks regularly throughout your day.

If you want to time your work session separately from Wakeout, try these free Pomodoro productivity apps.

Wakeout Kids App

If the fun and silly exercises grabbed your interest, or if you’re a parent, carer, or educator, you may want to try the special Wakeout Kids app. This app works on exactly the same principle as the adult edition, but with exercises tailored for kids.

The Wakeout Kids routines are suitable for the whole family to do together. So if you want to run around the deck of a pirate ship, roar like a lion, or pretend to be an octopus underwater, now you can! Wakeout Kids has a text-free interface, so children of any age can understand and follow the actions on the screen. It is a simple solution to get your kids active while having fun.

Unlike the adult app, Wakeout Kids offers no free trial. If Wakeout Kids doesn’t suit you, explore other awesome exercise apps for kids.

Download: Wakeout for Kids for iOS ($4.99, subscription available)

Wakeout Integrates With Apple Devices

Wakeout and Wakeout for Kids are available for iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. Wakeout also has an Apple Watch app and it can integrate with Apple Health to sync your active minutes. Family Sharing is supported, and you can even install a home screen widget to provide quick access to one-minute breaks.

Wakeout was even named Apple’s App of the Year in 2020 for its success in getting people off the sofa during lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Get Active in a Fun Way With Wakeout

If you find yourself feeling stiff and sore from a long day at the computer, why not fire up Wakeout and use the free trial to see if it suits you? You have a lot of choices for movement apps that ensure you don't sit for too long.