The Complete Guide to Getting the Most out of Under Desk Treadmills

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Have you ever felt restless sitting at your desk all day? Do you wish you could get some steps in or burn extra calories while working? If so, it may be time to consider an under desk treadmill!

Under desk treadmills allow you to walk while continuing to work on your computer. They slide neatly under standing desks or regular sit/stand desks, freeing up valuable floor space.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about under desk treadmills including:

  • The top 4 under desk treadmill picks
  • What to look for when choosing an under desk treadmill
  • Frequently asked questions about using under desk treadmills

Let’s get moving!

Introduction to Under Desk Treadmills

Under desk treadmills are exactly what they sound like – treadmills designed to fit under your desk. They typically have a long, narrow base that can slide underneath desks or tables that are high enough off the ground.

Here are some of the benefits of using an under desk treadmill:

  • Burn extra calories while walking at a slow, steady pace. Most under desk treadmills allow speeds from 0.5 to 2 mph. At just 1 mph, you can burn 100+ extra calories per hour.
  • Increase your step count. Even at a leisurely pace, you can rack up several thousand more steps per day. This contributes to better weight management and cardiovascular health.
  • Improve concentration and productivity. Research shows that regular movement helps sharpen focus and concentration, boosting productivity.
  • Reduce sitting time. Excess sitting is linked to increased risks of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other health issues. Under desk treadmills allow you to walk while working.
  • Strengthen muscles and joints. The gentle walking motion strengthens muscles like your calves, quads and glutes. It also improves bone density.
  • Relieve restlessness. If you tend to feel cooped up and restless sitting at your desk, an under desk treadmill gives you an outlet to move your body.

Under desk treadmills first gained popularity in offices looking for healthier alternatives to sitting all day. Now, many people are using under desk treadmills at home to get in activity while binge-watching TV or during long stints on the computer.

The Best 4 Under Desk Treadmills

If you’re convinced an under desk treadmill is right for your home or office, choosing the right model is key. Here are our picks for the top 4 best under desk treadmills on the market today:

1. GoPlus Under Desk Treadmill

Key Specs:

  • 2.5 HP motor
  • Speed range: 0.5 – 7.5 mph
  • Running surface: 40 x 14 inches
  • Weight capacity: 220 lbs
  • Foldable design, Easy assembly

When it comes to affordable, quality under desk treadmills, the GoPlus Under Desk Treadmill is hard to beat. It’s packed with useful features that make it our top budget-friendly pick.

Here are some of the pros of this model:

  • Ultra quiet operation. This under desk treadmill operates at less than 50 decibels. You can walk without disturbing others.
  • Folds easily for storage. The treadmill folds into a vertical position with soft drop protection, ideal for small spaces.
  • Safety key for emergency stop. For added safety, attach the clip to your clothing. If you fall, the treadmill stops immediately.
  • Useful remote control. The included remote lets you control speed and track metrics like time, speed, distance and calories.
  • Large running surface. With a 40 inch belt length, the surface fits most users comfortably. Height capacity is 6’1″.

Potential downsides include:

  • No incline option. The running surface is fixed at 0% incline. Some pricier models offer incline features.
  • Smartphone app could be better. The app isn’t as polished as higher-end models. But it gets the job done for basic stats tracking.

Overall, the GoPlus Under Desk Treadmill offers tremendous value. For under $400, you get a super functional under desk treadmill with everything you need for walking while you work. It’s ideal for both home and office use.

2. LifeSpan TR1200-DT7 Under Desk Treadmill

Key Specs:

  • 2.25 HP motor
  • Speed range: 0.4 – 4 mph
  • Running surface: 38 x 18 inches
  • Weight capacity: 350 lbs
  • Intelli-GuardTM technology, Bluetooth connectivity

For those seeking a premium under desk treadmill with all the bells and whistles, the LifeSpan TR1200-DT7 is a top contender. It’s feature-packed yet priced under $1,000.

Here are some standout features:

  • Adjustable Intelli-GuardTM technology. This auto-pause function stops the belt when you step off the treadmill, then resumes at your preset speed once you step back on.
  • Advanced shock absorption. The 6 compression shock absorbers provide premium joint cushioning.
  • Bluetooth connectivity. Sync your workout data to LifeSpan’s Active Trac app to track your stats.
  • Spacious running surface. The 38 inch belt length accommodates taller users up to 6’8″.

Other pros include:

  • Superb warranty coverage (15 years frame, 5 years motor, 2 years parts)
  • Relatively quiet operation at 58 decibels

Potential downsides:

  • Heavy weight of 161 lbs makes it hard to move
  • Expensive price point around $900

With unmatched innovation and engineering, the LifeSpan TR1200-DT7 is perfect if you want an under desk treadmill packed with data tracking and safety features. The investment delivers serious value for hardcore walkers.

3. UMAY 2 in 1 Foldable Under Desk Treadmill

Key Specs:

  • 2.25 HP motor
  • Speed range: 0.5 – 6 mph
  • Running surface: 39 x 14 inches
  • Weight capacity: 220 lbs
  • Foldable, Whisper quiet

Boasting an ultra-portable foldable design, the UMAY 2 in 1 Under Desk Treadmill is optimized for use in apartments, dorms and other small spaces. Despite its compact size, it still packs impressive performance.

Here are the highlights:

  • 2-in-1 folding design. This treadmill can fold into a running machine or under desk walking treadmill to save space.
  • Extremely quiet. Advanced insulation technology makes this one of the most silent under desk treadmills under 50 dB.
  • LCD display with modes. View your workout stats and switch between modes for running, jogging or walking.
  • Portable size. Weighing just 66 pounds, the treadmill can be moved and stored fairly easily.
  • Affordable price. Given the specs and quality, this treadmill offers great value under $350.

Potential limitations:

  • Low weight capacity at 220 pounds
  • Basic console lacking advanced features

Overall, the well-designed UMAY delivers unmatched portability and ultra-quiet operation at a budget-friendly price point. It’s the perfect under desk walking solution for apartments and small offices.

4. Goyouth Under Desk Treadmill

Key Specs:

  • 2.25 HP motor
  • Speed range: 0.5 – 7.5 mph
  • Running surface: 39 x 14 inches
  • Weight capacity: 265 lbs
  • Foldable, Shock absorption

Our final pick, the Goyouth Under Desk Treadmill earns a spot for its sturdy build, premium shock absorption and range of speeds – all at an affordable price.

Standout features include:

  • Integrated shock absorption. The treadmill frame uses 5 shock absorption elements to cushion your joints.
  • Powerful 2.25 HP motor. Ample power enables speeds up to 7.5 mph for both walking and light jogging.
  • Straightforward console. LED display shows your time, speed, distance, calories burned and pulse.
  • Portable and space-saving. Foldable design with soft drop system allows for easy storage and portability.
  • Great value for money. Priced under $450, this model delivers fantastic bang for your buck.

Potential drawbacks:

  • Small 39 inch running surface
  • Light on extra features like speakers or Bluetooth

For home offices on a budget, the Goyouth Under Desk Treadmill supplies everything needed for low-impact walking while working. The straight-forward but sturdy design offers excellent value.

How to Choose the Right Under Desk Treadmill

Now that we’ve covered some top-rated under desk treadmill options, let’s discuss key factors to consider when choosing the best model for your needs:

Consider your goals and needs

  • Are you primarily using an under desk treadmill for health reasons or productivity? This influences priorities like display features and price point.
  • Will you use it for walking or light jogging? Jogging requires a more powerful motor and higher speed capacity.

Pick size and dimensions based on space

  • Measure under your desk to ensure adequate clearance for the treadmill base. Look for treadmill width under 25 inches.
  • Consider belt length – oversized models may not fit in small spaces but accommodate taller users.

Evaluate weight capacity and stability

  • Make sure the treadmill can accommodate your weight safely. Average capacities range from 220 to 350 lbs.
  • Heavier treadmills with quality shock absorption offer better stability for vigorous walking.

Assess noise level

  • If using in a shared office or home, look for super quiet models under 50 decibels.
  • Cushioned belts, insulation and quality parts minimize disruptive noise.

Compare console features and connectivity

  • Basic displays show time, speed and distance. Advanced consoles include heart rate monitoring, training programs and more.
  • Bluetooth connectivity allows syncing your workout data with health apps for motivation.

Consider safety features

  • Look for an emergency safety key clip, auto-stop function if you fall and other safety tech.
  • Treadmills with guard rails on both sides are safest.

Evaluate foldability and portability

  • Foldable models are great if you need to store or move the treadmill easily. Just check weight.
  • Non-foldable units tend to be sturdier and offer more running surface space.

Check warranty coverage

  • Look for at least 1-2 years coverage for parts and labor. Top brands offer 5+ years for the motor and frame.

Read customer reviews

  • Checking reviews can reveal potential issues like noise, comfort or reliability downsides.
  • Look for brands with responsive customer service support.

Set a budget

  • Quality under desk treadmills run from $300 on the low end to $3000 at the luxury end.
  • Determine how much you’re willing to invest based on your needs and budget constraints.

Frequently Asked Questions About Under Desk Treadmills

Considering an under desk treadmill for your home office or workplace? Here we answer some of the most common questions about using under desk treadmills:

Is walking on an under desk treadmill as good as regular walking?

While not exactly equivalent, studies show under desk treadmill walking provides many of the same benefits as normal walking. It can improve heart health, blood sugar levels, circulation, joint mobility and more. The only caveat is it’s low-impact since speeds stay under 2 mph. For weight loss, you’ll burn fewer calories versus faster outdoor walking. But it still contributes significantly to your activity levels.

Are under desk treadmills safe to use?

When used properly, under desk treadmills are generally safe for most healthy adults. The key is using common sense safety practices: Start at slower speeds to get accustomed to walking. Wear proper footwear and comfortable clothing. Attach the safety clip. Only use at speeds where you can maintain your balance without holding on. Also invest in a treadmill with safety features like auto-stop technology. Avoid operating under the influence of medications or alcohol which impairs balance and coordination.

What speed is recommended on an under desk treadmill?

For under desk use, experts recommend keeping speeds between 0.5 to 2.0 mph. This corresponds to a slow, leisurely walking pace. At 1 mph you can take around 2,000 steps per hour. Faster speeds above 2.5 mph require holding on and aren’t feasible when working. Start slow if new to treadmill desks and gradually increase speed as you get accustomed to walking while working.

Can you sit and use an under desk treadmill?

Sitting on an under desk treadmill in motion is not recommended or safe. These machines are designed for walking while in an upright position. However, some models offer a wider belt and hand rails so you can safely stand in place for intermittent periods of resting. Turn off the treadmill if you need to take a prolonged seated break.

How much noise do under desk treadmills make?

Quality under desk treadmills operate very quietly – as low as 50 decibels which is about the level of a normal conversation. Insulation materials, vibration dampeners and lack of a front motor keeps noise to a minimum. More affordable models may have some mild humming or whirring sounds at higher speeds. If using in a shared office, look for the quietest under desk treadmill you can find and invest in noise cancelling headphones as needed.

Do I need special shoes for an under desk treadmill?

Cushioned walking shoes or sneakers with a flexible sole work best on under desk treadmills. The cushioning softens impact on your joints and provides needed grip. Avoid socks, slippers, heels or dress shoes which can easily slide on the tread belt leading to falls. If unsure, start slowly without shoes first. Then try your walking shoes to see if they “stick” adequately on the belt surface at your preferred speed.

What maintenance do under desk treadmills require?

One of the perks of under desk treadmills is they need minimal maintenance compared to full sized running machines. Focus on keeping the belt clean by wiping with an approved cleaner after each use. Vacuum or sweep out any debris under the belt periodically to prevent buildup. Lubricate the belt every 3-4 months or as per the manufacturer’s schedule. Also inspect components and hardware, tightening as needed per maintenance directions.

How much space do I need for an under desk treadmill?

Look for treadmills with walking surface widths around 20 inches wide. This allows adequate clearance to slide under standing height desks that are at least 28-30 inches tall. Measure under your existing desk to ensure enough space. Allow 6 inches of clearance from the wall for folding treadmills. If your desk is fixed in place, measure for length as well since treadmill bases are 4-5 feet long.

Are under desk treadmills worth the cost?

Given the multitude of health benefits, under desk treadmills offer excellent return on investment for many users. Even at the higher price point, costs average less than $1 per day over the lifetime of a quality under desk treadmill. The upfront investment pays off over time in increased health, productivity and reduced medical bills. Still, your budget determines if the cost seems worthwhile. More affordable options under $400 suit limited budgets.

How do I choose the right under desk treadmill?

Carefully consider your goals, needs and space constraints first. Are you prioritizing durability, advanced features, portability or budget price? Measuring your actual workstation area prevents buying a treadmill that doesn’t fit. Comparing specs and features allows choosing a treadmill tailored to your purposes. Testing treadmills in person also helps assess comfort. Investing some time upfront prevents costly mistakes and helps select your ideal under desk walking companion.

Start Moving With an Under Desk Treadmill

Sitting for prolonged periods is increasingly linked to detrimental health effects. But with an under desk treadmill, you can fight “sitting disease” and keep moving while working.

Under desk treadmills allow you to accumulate extra steps, calorie burn and reap all the physical and mental perks of walking – even during long sedentary workdays.

We hope this guide gave you a comprehensive overview of the best under desk treadmills to match your needs and fitness goals. Choosing the right model for your space, budget and purposes delivers outstanding value over time.

So whether your aim is boosting energy, elevating your mood or improving your waistline measurements, an under desk treadmill enables you to walk your way to better health one step at a time. Ready to get started?

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