App Appeal: Sworkit and Hold On!

It's almost 2:30, have you done your spiderman push-ups yet? Credit: Provided
It’s almost 2:30, have you done your spiderman push-ups yet?
Credit: Provided

Sworkit
Platforms: Android, iOS
Price: Free or 99 cents

Humans weren’t always sitters. Early man hunted prey, which led to us dominating most of the world. Laborers worked the fields or erected massive monuments to lazy. Only the powerful were allowed to sit, which is where the term “Chair” in organizations come from. Our ancestors stood for hours and hours and hours. Today we sit, all day, every day: At work, on the subway, in cars and back at home, where we watch TV to unwind from hours stewing in our own fat, nestled in comfortable desk chairs.

Sitting is death, and any breaks from it are necessary. Enter Sworkit, an app that allows one to pencil in tiny morsels of quickie exercise whenever one can manage. Whether you want light stretches or something more intensive — provided you don’t sweat through your ironed work clothes — it’s there, for however long you can manage. The moves are on random, thirty seconds at a time. Do five minutes of painful yoga poses, or a half hour of upper body stand-up pushes.

The app doesn’t force you to do any move. Don’t want to do “diamond push-ups” or “butt kicks?” It allows you to skip. Every two minutes it asks you to take a break. The only drawback is looking vaguely foolish in front of office mates. But you can stay smug, knowing that, unlike them, you’re probably not taking time off your life span by perching, ceaselessly, in a chair that’s more nice than any of us deserves.

Hold On!
Platforms: iOS
Price: 99 cents

In the documentary (and subsequent musical) “Hands on a Hard Body,” residents of Longview, Texas take place in an absurd endurance competition: Everyone touches a pickup truck, and the last to release their hand wins it. The closest thing to a time-waster app version of that is Hold On!, which seems simple: All you do is press a button in the middle of the screen until you can press no more (or lose interest). The scores are almost certainly faked: The current winner (named “Me no hack”) has a score of 9:59:59:99. But it’s not about winning. It’s a casual way to contemplate on the nature of time: How long a long (or short) amount of time feels, how our perception of time slows down when we’re concentrating on each iota of it — and how we waste on silly apps like this.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

News

Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Local

African couple claiming misidentification in robbery case to…

At a bail hearing today for Vickson and Lorfu Korlewala, charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman, bail was reduced from $1 million total to $500,000.

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

Television

Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…

Television

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.

NHL

Rangers draw first blood against Flyers in Game…

Brad Richards and Derek Stepan scored power-play goals 47 seconds apart to lead the Rangers to a 4-1 win.

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.