A Little Spin Time at Your Desk Goes a Long Way

Researchers have explored how playing with fidget toys like the Bruce Charles Designs "Schulte" Brass Spinning Top or "The Captive Nut" Everyday Carry Keyring can help spur creativity in the workplace.

Fiddling with desk toys like the Schulte might actually have a positive impact on cognitive functioning, improve focus and spark new ideas and faster learning.
So while spinning the Captive Nut or Schulte might be viewed as “playtime” at school, researchers at New York University’s Polytechnic School of Engineering examined how that “playtime” can benefit employees on the job by helping focus, offering stress relief and jump-starting creative thinking.

The NYU study was based in the research field of “embodied cognition,” part of social and cognitive psychology. Embodied cognition reflects the argument that the motor system and our physical movements influence our cognition. The physical action of fidgeting can be a coping mechanism and can help stimulate the brain so people can better focus on mundane tasks.

“The hand can operate as a director of consciousness—a tool or agent for the mind in achieving a mental state in which people will be able to get the outcome they want,” says Frank R. Wilson, a neurologist, lecturer and author of a book about on how the interplay between the hand and the mind cultivates intelligence.

Participants in the study often reported practical benefits from twirling, spinning, flipping or fiddling with objects. They said these desk toys were able to ease mental and physical strain and help employees not feel as restless. Desk toy for the win!

“Part of a good desk toy is the ‘wow factor’ that draws people to your desk and starts conversations," says David Figler, who heads merchandising for toys, games, and wellness for Brookstone Inc. The Schulte Top offers that “wow factor” for a desk as something attractive and shiny. But it also offers the practical benefit of helping employees have a productive day at their office.

Do you have a fidget toy or other stress reliever you play with at work? We'd love to hear about it! And if you happen to use a top or keyring from us, post a picture on social media using the hashtag #brucecharlesdesigns




About Bruce Charles Designs
At Bruce Charles Designs, we create beautiful yet functional pieces of art for people who appreciate clever designs and beautiful materials. Founder and designer Bill Strahan is an entrepreneur who has successfully launched and designed products and ideas for multiple businesses including Armored Fitness, Wayforward Adventures, and iFly GPS. Bruce Charles Designs came to be after Strahan discovered a love for machining, including his use of the lathe machine. Our products are elegantly functional, from our minds to your hands.