A good portion of today’s society fidgets. Whether its pen clicking, leg shaking, key twirling, finger tapping or hair twirling — it’s a habit.
More and more evidence is pointing out that fidgeting is not necessarily a bad thing. A September 2012 study reported in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, showed that fidgeting can have a small health benefit. The long-term study of 14,000 women living in Britain looked at whether sedentary lifestyles increased the risk of death in the women surveyed. According to the results as reported by the Washington Post at the time, when all other factors had been accounted for, “increased mortality was only seen in the group that reported the lowest level of fidgeting.”
This was only confirming what many fidgeters knew already — they function better if they are doing something while, well, doing something. And businesses are capitalizing on the trend.
Fidgi Pen is the latest business to invent a way for users to wiggle their way to worktime focus. Billed as a fidget toy disguised as a pen, Fidgi Pen’s creators say they wanted to create a more discreet fidget aid that can be used in any situation.
The idea for the pen that doubles as a toy came from Adam Mortimer, a Mapleton resident and co-founder of Fidgi Pen.
“Adam realized that all the fidget toys out there looked like toys, and they were unprofessional for work,” said his wife and co-founder, Moana Mortimer. “But everybody has a pen. You can use the Fidgi Pen and people don’t know it’s a toy.”
In addition to being a functioning ballpoint pen, the Fidgi Pen has a rolling ball feature, a spinning disk, a click switch, a flip clip and a smooth “worry stone” type of dip. The Mortimers, and their team, Paul Garfield, Marcus Case and Braydon Ball, designed the Fidgi Pen so it can use standard pen refills.
Fidgi Pen is very new, still in its pre-manufacturing phase. Adam came up with the idea and initial designs in fall, and they ran multiple prototypes. Moana said one early version had 10 different fidgeting options on it, but it looked too cluttered.
Figuring out the injection molding aspect of the pen that could hold the inner workings of the features, but still fit over a ink cartridge was tricky, Moana said.
“I would say 95 percent of people told me this couldn’t be done. But Adam kept telling me to keep trying,” Moana said.
“Moana worked hard to find people who could think outside the box. Now the sleeve goes inside the pen to hold the components and the casing of the pen goes over that,” Case said.
The Fidgi Pen team launched their product on Kickstarter on Feb. 28, and were fully funded within 48 hours. With an original goal of $15,000, and about 15 more days to go in the campaign, they are well past that original goal, sitting at about $65,000. They will fulfill orders for the campaign by September.
The team has already been approached by television’s “Shark Tank,” and is hoping to look at licensing agreements with large pen manufacturers. They are excited for the future, and excited about what they are doing.
“We’ve had people who have ADHD message us, and tell us how much they need something like this to play with. We’re excited to help kids perform better in schools,” Case said. “It feels good to know that we’re making a product that will help people.”