Fixie derivative trading, anyone? Barclays takes after PwC and installs exercise bikes in its Canary Wharf offices to boost productivity

Edith Hancock
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Now there's no reason to ever leave the building (Source: Getty)

Not content with a ruthlessly strict dress code after it banned flip-flops, Barclays bosses are having a go at changing their workers' lifestyles - by furnishing its Canary Wharf offices with exercise bikes.

Barclays has been offering "High Octane Rides" to bankers since August, in an attempt to find new ways to boost productivity in the workplace.

The idea is that Barclays workers can get their daily exercise fix between meetings, taking part in short, 10-minute bursts of "max intensity" cycling during the day instead of waking up early to hit the gym before work.

The service is provided by fitness tech business High Octane Ride, which has furnished a number of London offices with stationery bikes, including Accenture and PwC.

The bike uses software known as cardiovascular optimisation logic, or Carol, to personalise each workout. HOR’s website claims the system’s algorithms "respond by automatically pushing you harder in subsequent rides or relaxing your ride if you have had a bad day” (apparently it asks).

A spokesperson from High Octane said the bank is "trying to encourage as many people as possible to get involved".

Barclays said it is only testing the bikes in two locations at the moment, including cycling zones in Barclaycard's Coventry offices and a handful of bikes between bankers' desks in Canary Wharf - but if all goes well we could be seeing a new trend for lunchtime workouts in London's financial quarter...

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