Build Momentum Behind Your Desk With the Counterweight Table

A Simple Machine was born from the idea of changing our sedentary ways during the workday. Designed to bring movement and momentum into the workspace, the four-piece collection is one answer to creating a healthier day spent behind a desk. Created by HeijltjesAkkaya for Dutch furniture brand Prooff, A Simple Machine relies on ergonomics and engineering – pulleys, weights, and levers – that can be powered by human energy.

green human-powered drafting table

One piece stood out to us more than the others: the Counterweight Table. Taking intermittent breaks throughout the day and regularly adjusting your posture can be distractions, so changing our behaviors is a bit of a challenge. The seemingly static sit/stand Counterweight Table meets us in the middle. Constructed using folded steel and industrial parts, a cylindrical counterweight balances the tabletop and its frame – making the surface float at your desired height. Easy to use and move, the motion the user makes is mimicked by the moving parts of the table without the use of an external power source.

green human-powered drafting table

“A Simple Machine was born from our experience of trying to improve our own way of working. Failing to find fitting solutions in current work furniture, we were curious what would effectively stimulate ourselves to having a more active workday,“ said Simon Akkaya, designer at HeijltjesAkkaya.

detail of green human-powered drafting table

green human-powered drafting table

green human-powered drafting table

To learn more about the Counterweight Table, visit

Photography by HeijltjesAkkaya.

Kelly Beall is senior editor at Design Milk. The Pittsburgh-based graphic designer and writer has had a deep love of art and design for as long as she can remember, and enjoys sharing her finds with others. When undistracted by great art and design, she can be found making a mess in the kitchen, consuming as much information as possible, or on the couch with her three pets. Find her @designcrush on social.

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