Usually, when we’re stressed, anxious or lack focus, we feel the need to fidget with anything we can find around ourselves, that might be clicking a pen, playing with keys or just finger drumming on the table and most of the times it’s quite annoying to people around us. That’s why smart engineers started coming up with ideas for products which could be helpful in these situations. That’s how fidget toys were born in late 2016. What’s interesting is that research shows that in some cases fidget toys help people get rid of their bad habits like smoking and nail biting. They help you get rid of that excess energy that’s just bursting out, they’re made to be discrete so you can fidget anywhere, whenever you get overwhelmed or get the desire to fidget.
One of the fidget toys that lately has gained increasing popularity are fidget spinners. A quite simple fidgeting toy that you hold between your fingers and spin it with your other hand, the smooth and sturdy feeling of it spinning calms our nerves, helps to stay awake and focus. But there are other fidgeting toys like cubes, pads and balls, you just have to find the one that you like the most. The prices for them varies a lot, they go from a couple of dollars to hundreds of dollars and it’s worth noting that the quality of those toys is directly tied to the price, most likely you can’t expect a long lasting product from a $5 fidget toy.
The Fidget Cube
Fidget cube is a small, handheld toy with multiple buttons, dials, and textured surfaces. What’s interesting is that this fidget was funded at Kickstarter with quite a lot of success and is the original fidget cube from which all the other fidgeting toys originated. The Kickstarter campaign started in August 2016 and lasted for 2 months, in these 2 months fidget cube founders were able to raise almost 6.5 million dollars from more than 150,000 backers. The original fidget cube comes with these fidgeting possibilities:
- Indented surface – You can rub it with your fingers, the rubbing motion reduces stress and anxiety.
- Circular spinner – The circular motion this fidget provides calms you in stressful situations.
- Switch – You can tap the switch silently or flip it rapidly to generate noise.
- Roll-able gears – Do you like the motion of opening combination locks? These gears are for you!
- Buttons – If you like clicking your pen, then these buttons are for you, three of them generate noise and 2 are silent.
- Joystick – Smooth gliding action of the joystick lets you lower your anxiety.
The Fidget Pad
Just as the original fidget toy, this provides almost the same functions but is shaped differently and is almost twice the size of the original fidget cube. The dented surface is replaced with a textured one to increase blood flow while you’re rubbing it and it has a slidable switch that goes back to its position after you’re done fiddling with it. As it’s lightweight and discrete you’re able to fidget with it anywhere. This particular fidget pad is made from ABS plastic and are around 7cm (or 2.75 inches) in length and 4cm (or 1.57 inches) in width and weighs about 70 grams. It comes with lanyard holes which allow you to strap your fidget pad to a rope and place the rope around your hand, so it’s with you anywhere, ready to help you.
The Fidget Cube XL
This is the big brother of the original fidget cube as this fidget has 12 sides instead of 6. Same as the previous fidgets this fidget is all about relieving stress. It’s worth noting that this is a bit larger fidget toy and you most likely will not be able to squeeze in your jeans pocket which could be done with the original fidget cube. This 12 sided fidget is really well built a will last a long time. The 12 sides on this fidget provide these functions:
- Switch – There’s a switch if you crave some switch flipping motions.
- Elastic balls – Do what pleases you, press, pull or squeeze these elastic balls.
- Buttons – 4 pressable buttons with a soothing clicking sound.
- Sliders – Slide each of the 3 sliders individually.
- Rubber loop – Take your fidget with you anywhere.
- Single button – Replicate the pen clicking motion.
- Textured side – A rough, textured side for rubbing.
- Indented side – Massage it with your fingers and improve blood circulation.
- Gears – Three gears that can be rolled any direction.
- Joystick – A neat little joystick provides gliding motion.
- Squishy ball – A bigger squishable and pullable ball.
- Spinner – Provides a smooth spinning motion.
The Fidget Ball
Meet the fidget ball, another small fidget you can fit in the palm of your hand so you can carry it with you anywhere. Someone who’s experienced trauma or is suffering from PTSD likes to fidget around as a couping mechanism and as this is quite affordable you can have multiple fidgets around yourself. One thing to be aware of is the noise this fidget generates. You might think that fidgeting with such a small device wouldn’t generate attention, but you’re wrong, if you’re doing it in a quiet place like classroom or library, it can provide a lot of grumpy stares from others as the noise can be unsettling for people.
The Fidget Spinner
Fidget spinners have gained a lot of popularity lately, there are no multiple dials you can turn or buttons to push, these fidgets provide one simple action – they spin from 2 to 6 minutes. For these fidgets prices can vary a lot, from $5 to even $200 dollars for handmade spinners or if they contain precious/rare materials, but the quality of these premium material spinners can be the same as the $50 dollar spinner. From what I have seen a good quality metal spinners start from about $30 dollars. Same as the other fidgeting toys these spinners help people relax, stay awake, relieve anxiety and focus on their daily tasks and research even suggests that with the help of them you can get rid of your bad habits. If you get a fidget spinner with good quality bearings you can easily fidget with it while you’re in public, in a meeting or while working as they will not make much noise.
If you’re interested in more information about fidget spinners, we have made a list of more than 30 spinners.
So, is it worth investing into these fidgets?
They are incredibly fun and addictive little toys. So if you catch yourself fidgeting with random objects or people have told you that your pen clicking noises are driving them crazy – you might want to try these fidgets. They’re affordable enough that they won’t make a dent in your budget. At the end of the day they’re toys which can help you get rid of your excess energy. Also they are instant conversation starters and you can come together with your friends to perform and learn new tricks.