Chonkers are Premium Therapeutic Stuffed Animals that allow you to add calming weight, heat, scent, and more to naturally relax.
With a variety of interchangeable Sensory Packs, Chonkers allow you endless options to adjust to your preferences or mood. You can add weight up to 8 lbs, microwavable heat, cooling, and relaxing scents to customize to what calms you.
Chonkers are specifically designed to help find what calms you and recreate that relaxation technique.
Anxiety is not one size fits all and neither is how you manage it, which is why we designed Chonkers to be compatible with multiple interchangeable Sensory Packs.
The combination of different Sensory Packs allows you to take advantage of a variety of occupational therapy techniques shown to help manage anxiety and improve mood, customizing your Chonker for what is most effective for you.
For Kickstarter we will be offering perks for supporters of an adorably chubby version of a classic Teddy Bear, Chonky Bear and a selection of 4 different Sensory Packs.
Chonky Bear is a premium super-soft plush Bear built to be durable while remaining soft and breathable. The bear is 18" in height so large enough for adults as well as children, but able to be condensed for traveling by removing packs.
The back of Chonky Bear features a hidden zippered enclosure to add multiple Sensory Packs. The enclosure is double-lined to support up to 8 lbs of weight.
Each Sensory Pack is designed to be soft and cuddlable within your Chonker but has a different feel, weight, or effect that makes it unique. All packs are easily removable and can be used alone or with any other pack.
There will be 4 different Sensory Packs to choose from at launch: Weight, Heat, Heat + Lavender, and Plush. You can include up to 2 packs at once to add up to 8 lbs of weight or to combine effects like heat and weight.
Adding weight allows you to take advantage of a therapeutic technique known as deep touch stimulation, a method of adding concentrated pressure to the body to calm the nervous system and promote relaxation.
This technique has become popular among Occupational Therapists and in hospitals as a natural method to calm anxiety. The weight provides a sensation of security much like you experience from cuddling, receiving a hug, or a child being swaddled.
Each weighted pack is 4 lbs and each Chonker can hold 2 packs at a time. There is no particular perfect weight for everybody as it is largely a matter of preference and can change over time as you acclimate to the sensation; however, between plush, heat, and weighted packs you can go from 1 lb to 8 lbs in seconds to find the perfect weight for you.
Heat Sensory Packs allow you to warm up your Chonker to take advantage of the soothing physical and mental benefits of Heat Therapy. Pop your Heat Sensory Pack in the microwave for 1 minute and it will remain warm for over 2 hours within your Chonker. Add it to the freezer for 2 hours and it will stay cool for an hour.
Applying heat to areas of your body can naturally soothe and improve the flow of oxygen through your blood stream. The improved blood flow is why heat packs have been popular for so long when sick or recovering from an injury, or dealing with cramps as it increases the extensibility of collagen tissues, decreasing joint stiffness, pain and relieving muscles in a post-acute phase of healing while increasing the flow of proteins, nutrients, and oxygen to the affected area.
The Heat packs are also able to be cooled to help with pain management and general comfort. Like using ice packs or ice baths, cold is great for recovery by reducing blood flow to a particular area of your body you can help reduce inflammation and pain.
There is nothing worse than trying to sleep through hot, sticky summer nights, CHONKERS are the "cool side of the pillow" that will stay cooler longer. Beyond just comfort, the temperature can be very helpful as soothing sensory input for calming panic attacks, over-stimulation, or anger episodes.
The Heat + Lavender Sensory Packs have the same effects as the Heat Pack but with the additional benefit of Lavender added.
Using scents as a relaxation aid has been used for ages and is known as Aromatherapy. Aromatherapy is simply the use of scents to trigger a reaction from your mind. The connections that your mind makes to particular scents can trigger this without you even knowing. Adding naturally calming scents like Lavender stimulates relaxing responses from your brain's limbic system. This works very similar to using a relaxing scented candle, a bubble bath, a sleep spray, essential oils, or sleeping with comforting smell of a loved ones sweatshirt to help you calm down or sleep better.
The Plush Sensory Pack allows you to fluff up your Chonker while adding minimal weight. The plush pack is similar to a traditional teddy bear with a cushy soft feel that still plumps up his belly depending on how stuffed you want him while continuing to allow you to control the weight.
We are offering 5 Bundles as perks for backers so you can be the first to receive Chonkers and try it out at a discounted price. The “Day 1 Supporter” and Early Supporter” bundle are limited offers only available to the first backers.
All products will be shipped from the United States. The amount charged is averaged based on different packs that can be selected and destinations.
While we recognize it would be great to have in time for the holidays since it is a new project and there are many unknowns with shipping times we do not want to set unrealistic expectations or stress for you wondering if it will come in time.
Our team of designers and product experts has been working with occupational therapists to create new sensory products for people with anxiety, depression, autism/ASD, and other disorders for 5 years.
Personally, throughout my life I have lived with social and generalized anxiety and sought methods to help manage it. In Kindergarten, I used to cut off a small piece of my favorite blanket to keep in my pocket to help me calm me down but have continued to create for effective options in the years since. In 2015, I discovered how the effects of deep pressure could help me calm down and began trying weighted blankets which were popular in the ASD community at the time. While I found them helpful, I also found them to be expensive, bulky, hot, and primarily made in child sizes.
I started making my own versions of these blankets to improve them working closely with others using the products and Occupational Therapists to create more affordable and accessible options, eventually founding a company to produce high-quality sensory bedding in 2016. Weighted blankets grew in popularity and became cheaper and better quality, but the inspiration for Chonkers came while still looking for ways to improve on some of the challenges customers and I continued to face like overheating, portability, price, and finding/adapting to the perfect weight even 5 years later.
The solution ended up not being bedding at all but a stuffed animal that could utilize more natural occupational therapy techniques and be personalized to the individual. Chonkers can be used everyday, traveled with, and was more effective. Chonkers is a product that I love and am excited about the opportunity to share with the world.