The Portable Armrest

What does it say about our society that it has invented this, the portable armrest?

It’s a mini-straightjacket-looking thing that you slip over both your elbows. Voila! Instant armrest, without worry about accidentally coming into contact with the human being sitting beside you.

I have not tested this product personally, because it looks stupid.

High Road Travel Armrest – XL [Walmart] (Thanks to Hilary!)

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  1. digital0verdose says:

    Thinking about some of the flights I have been on recently, I would have liked to have something like this.

    It looks stupid until you are in a long, uncomfortable situation.

    • The cake is a lie! says:

      Lots of things are stupid and uncomfortable. Neckties come to mind… Yet I still have to wear one every day. I’d much rather have something functional if I have to look and feel ridiculous.

      • hoi-polloi says:

        I gave up the corporate noose some time ago. Not everyone has that luxury, but I can count on one hand the number of times per year a professional obligation forces me into one.

    • eyesack is the boss of the DEFAMATION ZONE says:

      If only they made one for the gonads.

  2. c!tizen says:

    Is it just me or does that look like a mini straightjacket?

  3. danmac says:

    I’ll only purchase if it comes with a free Hannibal Lector-style muzzle.

  4. sheldonmoon69 says:

    Looks confining and it would probably drive me crazy, but I could understand the comfort of something like this if I was sitting without armrests for a long time.

  5. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    This may sound wierd, but I wonder if this would be useful for austistic and asberger sufferer’s. Many who are afflicted don’t like physical contact with other people but still crave some kind of “hug.”

    Famous Temple Grandin actually created her own device for this purpose.

    • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

      This does seem like it could be useful therapeutically.

      BTW it’s Asperger. My husband says that every time he hears that word it sounds like ass burger. Your post made me lol b/c it reminded me of this.

    • flarn2006 says:

      That’s funny, I just watched the movie about her at school last week.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        The one with Claire Danes?! I’m waiting for Netflix!

    • eddieck says:

      I have Asperger’s (doctor diagnosed) and this whole “idea” seems stupid to me.

      • mmmsoap says:

        Clearly you represent the needs and wants of millions of people? Loias actually had a sound point, many people with autism spectrum disorders (including Asperger’s Syndrome) do want a “hug”, and cannot tolerate physical contact from a person. There are a number of devices sold that help children with sensory integration issues feel more contained.

        • Bagumpity says:

          mmmsoap- I clicked on that link, but was confused. It’s sold as an “autism vest,” with no explanation of what that is. A little google-fu helped out. Here’s a link to an article with a little more info. My only thought is that I hope it’s not just another scam to get desperate parents to buy something on the narrow chance that it will comfort their ailing child.

          • kateforgach says:

            I worked with Temple for 11 years and saw first-hand how her non-portable “squeeze machine” made a huge difference in her stress levels. I could easily see this vest being equally useful.

            The best part of Temple’s movie winning so many Emmy’s was seeing her give a huge on-stage hug to the producer on stage. That couldn’t have happened without years of therapy from her squeeze machine.

  6. obits3 says:

    Looks like being a couch potato just got easier!

    • OnePumpChump says:

      Son’t even need a couch.

      Hell, these are a lot more economical than section-8 housing vouchers.

  7. Gail says:

    How about a leg puller together you could put on other people? Look at that guy in the pic – he’s got a wide stance. His damn knees are over in my seat by like a three feet.

    • aloria says:

      The subwaydouchery blog refers to that as “lava balls syndrome,” because guys who do that look like they think their balls are made of molten hot lava, and having them touch a leg in the slightest would inflict massive pain.

    • chefboyardee says:

      I’m too tall (with disproportionately long legs) to sit in the seat with my legs together. Even if I sit straight up, which is impossible on a long flight, I’d constantly be kneeing the person in front of me in the back every time I shift.

      Sitting with lava balls is the only way that I and the person in front of me can be comfortable the whole trip. I’m sorry if it sucks for the people next to me, but you’re welcome to complain to the airline about how little leg room we tall people get if you think it will help.

      If you’re tall, you understand; if you’re short you don’t need the side to side room anyway.

      • aloria says:

        I empathize with you about the leg room thing (I am seeing someone who is 6’7″,) but I have seen plenty of short people guilty of doing this, as well as people doing it in places where leg room is not an issue, such as subway trains where the seats run along either side of the car.

      • aloria says:

        And, yes, short people need side to side room, because we generally don’t like strangers’ legs rubbing up against or knocking into our own.

      • Gail says:

        I have all pity for super tall guys in that situation. However, when its a “My legs literally do not fit in the space provided”, its pretty obvious. My beef is with the guys who, generally trains and buses, sit with their legs spread so wide that I could probably perform a vasectomy with little trouble, for no apparent reason.

      • ogremustcrush says:

        Ah the worst is when the legroom is just enough that your knees barely fit with a normal sitting position during takeoff, but once the person in front of you reclines their seat your legs get locked into that spot with a hard plastic tray table pushing into your leg right above the kneecap. Then you have to have a leg spasm thing to get them free simultaneously jolting the crap out of the seat in front of you (which who cares- they locked your bloody knees in place) and slightly into the seats next to you. I see the pictures of standing seats they’ve posted on here and they actually seem like an improvement to this crap.

    • Groanan says:

      My am too well endowed to sit with my legs together.
      Having strong thigh muscles doesn’t help either.
      Perhaps men and women should be forced to alternate seats so accommodates those who can close their legs and those would would have to preform the nutcracker?

    • RandomHookup says:

      That wide stance must cause him some problems in the men’s room.

    • flipdad1 says:

      lol at that

  8. Arcaeris says:

    Wth ll th ft sss n rplns ltl whs ft rlls tk p th prvdd rmrsts, ths s gdsnd. Nw y cn rst yr rms wtht hvng thm st dwn n yr lp nd wtht hvng t lbw sm ft ss’ ft t f th w jst t gt n nch t rst sd lbw n.

    • unchainedmuse says:

      Any excuse for an attack on fat people, eh? Can’t you be a little more creative?

      • Arcaeris says:

        It’s not an excuse. I only fly once or twice a year, and the last 4 times I’ve flown, I’ve been seated next to someone who was so overweight that their body intruded into my seat space by several inches. I was forced to lean way out into the aisle to avoid rubbing their fat all flight.

        One lady even asked if we could leave the armrests up, so there’d be no barrier between us. That’s disgusting.

        • OnePumpChump says:

          Ever get stuck between two?

          Lucky for me it was a 45 minute flight.

        • Snaptastic says:

          I had a larger woman ask me to leave the armrest up before as well. She even was so “kind” as to explain to me how unfair and rude it would be for me NOT to put the armrest up because according to her, “you only take up half your seat.” I tactfully told her that if she was willing to reimburse me half the cost of my seat, then I would be happy to share it with her.

          She spent the flight glaring at me, grunting, and generally trying to be annoying.

          • gman863 says:

            My response would have been, “Would Madame like a whaffer thin mint?”

            If was a Monty Python fan I’d be dead within two minutes after she sat on and smothered me for the comment.

      • gman863 says:

        Quit whining. Personally, I could stand to lose 30-40 pounds but I don’t sit around thinking of ways I could sue Macy’s for discrimination since I stand no chance of them hiring me as a male underwear model.

        I have been stuck next to morbidly obese people on two full flights. Naturally, they’re unwilling or unable to squeeze into anything but the aisle seats (yes, 2 seats). Not being able to get up and use the restroom during the entire flight is bad enough. In the event of an emergency, I would literally have to jump over my seat to the next or previous row for any chance of staying alive!

        Disney World won’t let you ride Space Mountain if you can’t safely fit in the seat. In consideration of other passengers’ safety and comfort, airlines should take the same approach. If I ever let myself go to the point I wear a 60″ waist, I’ll understand why Southwest or any other carrier forces me to buy the number of seats I actually use.

    • Jupichan says:

      Wow, you’re a rude one. Good thing I’ll never have to sit next to you.

    • OnePumpChump says:


      PS: FAT.

    • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

      Wow. Your mom must be so proud.

    • ngwoo says:

      I make my own fat at home.

  9. Jacquilynne says:

    I’d like to have this for during massages — when I’m lying on my back, I have trouble keeping my arms in a comfortable position.

    This, I realize, is a truly first world problem.

    • hotdogsunrise says:

      It may be, but I completely agree with you. I never know where to put my arms so that they’re not in the way, and in a place where it’s comfortable to me.

  10. dosdelon says:

    Just a couple more straps and some buckles and you’ve got yourself a makeshift straitjacket, I’m just sayin’…

  11. MarvinMar says:

    I make my own armrest at home (By eating chips and candy)
    And they said beer bellies were bad….Saved me $15.99

  12. brianary says:

    Is this for people without fingers, or whose fingers can’t interlock?

  13. TrinityLast says:

    I’m a larger person with very wide shoulders – this would be amazing on flights, but also just at concerts in outdoor amphitheaters or such places, where, I’m sorry, the chairs are made for teeny people with no hips. I’m not overweight, not anymore…but I AM Jewish. I have wide hips. I have wide shoulders. I still, at my height’s ideal weight, do NOT fit in these places comfortably.

  14. travel_nut says:

    WTF? Hahahaha.

  15. Cyniconvention says:

    “For the beginner in straightjacket escape.”

    *knows straightjackets have already been mentioned*

  16. Cliff_Donner says:

    [Margaret Smith] “I wore a neck brace for a year – – I wasn’t in an accident or anything – – I just got tired of holding my head up.” [/Margaret Smith]

  17. Swedgin says:

    Does it come in leather? With D-rings?

  18. StuffThingsObjects says:

    I would like something that would help me from sitting on my scrotum.

  19. Whtthfgg says:

    I like to nap in the car on lunch and I will actually restrict my elbows towards my body with a jacket or something because it is more comfortable…this would rock…lol

  20. Warren - aka The Piddler on the Roof says:

    They tried to put me in one of those once. I hauled off and smacked the crap out of…

    Oh wait. That was something else. Never mind.

  21. swingerhead says:

    Armrests are generally too low for me so I could appreciate this if you didnt look like a total tard. But then again, on a plane who else is going to see you except the person(s) next to you? Add a strap for your head that goes around the headrest to keep your head from flopping around and I could take a good nap.

  22. BethM says:

    What happened to just folding your arms? Or interlacing your fingers and resting your arms on your lap? …You’re right, that sounds too difficult.

  23. rdclark says:

    For someone like me, with chronic shoulder pain from an old injury/surgery, this would be welcome if it would hold my arm in position without requiring muscle effort or stress during a movie or on a flight.

  24. Big Mama Pain says:

    This just made the Snuggie obsolete

  25. savashley says:

    You don’t have to look ridiculous wearing it, just put on a snuggie first, THEN put on your portable armrest. Cozy, and completely NOT ridiculous looking. Yep.

  26. gman863 says:

    If you fly an airline with open seating (Southwest, etc.) and aren’t too concerned about being hauled off by the TSA, it would be fun to wear one throught the gate area and boarding process while occasionnaly drooling and making random noises.

    Provided you weren’t detained, it’s a guaranteed bet you’d have the row to yourself unless the flight was totally sold out.

  27. The Lone Gunman says:

    ..AND–for a limited time–to enhance your play experience, when you PRE-ORDER GITMO:Interactive Federal Prisoner Transfer for your Playstation, PS3 and other gaming devices at Walmart….

    • The Lone Gunman says:


      “WOW! THAT’S a @#%$#$ ARM REST!!”

      pan over to a prisoner being transported

      “I know.

  28. Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

    I wonder if this was invented by a veteran.

    When I was in the Army, we were always finding creative ways to sleep sitting up when in the back of Bradleys, APCs, airplanes, and trucks.

  29. bunchofpants says:

    OMG, this would be so perfect to use with my Snazzy Napper (!

  30. AD8BC says:

    OK… It looks stupid… but I’m gonna get one.

    Six years ago I snapped my upper arm in two and disclocated my shoulder at the same time. My arm has never been the same since. I _always_ need an armrest now or my arm just aches.