Researchers at Jaguar Land Rover have developed a car seat that changes shape while you sit, tricking your brain into thinking you're taking a lovely, relaxing stroll when you're actually stuck behind the wheel.
The seat is intended to minimize the potentially harmful effects of sitting on your backside during long car journeys. It accomplishes this by making tiny adjustments as you sit, gently moving your pelvis in a way that simulates the rhythm of walking.
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Small actuators underneath the seat's comfy foam padding gently rock your hips throughout your journey, and the company says that the exact movements could eventually be tailored to suit different drivers.
"The wellbeing of our customersand employees is at the heart of all our technological research projects," said Dr Steve Iley, Jaguar Land Rover chief medical officer. "We are using our engineering expertiseto develop the seat of the future using innovative technologies not seen before in the automotive industry to help tackle an issue that affects people across the globe.”
Don't get too comfortable...
The Morphable Seat, as it's known, is only a concept, and won't be appearing in production cars any time soon, but it does address a real problem: according to the World Health Organization (opens in new tab), sedentary lifestyles are contributing to a 'global pandemic' of diseases, including heart disease, chronic respiratory illness, lung cancer and stroke,
Even if a seat like this isn't able to mitigate those effects, the constant movement might be a reminder that you'd be better off getting out and stretching your muscles if at all possible.
In the meantime, Jaguar Land Rover has put together a video recommending various ways to improve your posture in a regular car seat, so at least bad posture won't be making things worse: