This New IKEA Storage Bench Doubles as Fitness Equipment
It’s part of a collection devoted to at-home workouts.
Published Dec 8, 2023 9:45 AM
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Exercise means something different to everyone, but one thing we can come together on is that there is always room for better-looking gear in a sea of bland equipment. IKEA’s newest collection, Dajlien, introduces 19 products designed for movement at home, including sage-hued ring weights, a bamboo step board, and even a portable speaker. Prices range from a $4 set of hand towels to a $135 storage bench that’ll pack all your gear in one place and then double as a coffee table.
Debuting at Art Basel today and coming to stores in January, the collection is all about multifunctional fitness products that blend seamlessly into the home and inspire you to stay active. “A couple of years back, we took part in research on training and found that women with small kids and teen girls are likely to drop out of sports,” says Sarah Fager, a designer at IKEA. “We thought that we could address that somehow.”
So they visited homes in four large cities—New York, Chicago, London, and Shanghai—to speak with individuals about the obstacles they face to being active. Motivation, limited space, time constraints, and working out in gyms all numbered among the reasons. Then the pandemic hit, and making space to move at home became even more important. The designers took all of this into account while dreaming up the products, and looks were paramount.
“The colors were a really important part of the collection,” IKEA designer Akanksha Deo explains. The intention comes through in a palette that is sunny and warm without being knock-the-lights-out bright, with shades of green and yellow featured throughout. Each piece puts a premium on easy operation and storage as well as portability.
If you’re wondering if the pieces will actually work for your routine, take it from Fager and the other three female designers behind Dajlien: They not only tested the products themselves at home but had professional trainers come up with circuit routines around them.
Almost every product is versatile in its use, which speaks to the designers’ aim to create adaptable items that flex across age, ability, and room size—all without sacrificing style. The exercise mat, for example, is more generous in shape and size than your standard rectangle, and it has a smaller companion that can be paired to accommodate a child if they want to join a parent. The valet stand offers spots for hanging clothes, a resistance band, or other things you want accessible, like the ring weights or one of the cozy ponchos.
“The uniqueness of this collection is that we don’t really define what training is for people, so they can define it for themselves,” Deo says.