Remote work has us stationed at home — the issue is that our bodies are also stationary. Everyone has heard about how inactivity can affect overall health. Regular exercise is thought to help improve mental well-being, strengthen the immune system, build muscle, and strengthen bones.
Despite the positive aspects of exercise, it can be challenging to get changed and go to the gym, especially after a long day of work. This is where desk bikes come in handy. You can pedal under your desk all day long as you work on that project or draft a promotion-worthy email — all while staying in place. Cycling can be easier on the joints than running while also providing joint mobility and possibly helping with cardiovascular fitness. It’s important to incorporate habit-forming activities into your life as seamlessly as possible; that way, they stick around for longer periods of time. A bike desk creates a habit of exercise that combines cardio with productivity: It’s the best of both worlds.
Also: The 5 best workout apps
It’s not just remote workers who are moving to bike desks. Hybrid workers and in-person workers could reap the benefits on a company-wide level. For example, social media management company Hootsuite revamped its Vancouver headquarters and replaced 500 desks with bike desks, treadmill desks, meeting pods, and sit-stand workstations. Bike desks have the potential to alleviate the stress of work while also making sure you stay awake and alert.
- Large 20-inch x 20-inch desk surface
- Pneumatic adjustment lever
- Easy to reach the pedals
- Five pieces in the package for easy assembly
- Battery not included
- Double check the warranty process
- Seat could be uncomfortable
Specs: Weight capacity: 300 lbs | Dimensions: 37.6 x 23.2 x 47.2 inches | Item weight: 51 lbs | Height range: 5′ to 6′ | Number of resistance levels: 8
This machine looks strong enough to withstand the toughest workout. It has a strong, stable frame consisting of a rounded body so that kids won’t get hurt on any sharp edges. You can easily adjust the desk bike seat up or down by pressing the pneumatic adjustment lever — no pins or knobs. The pedals are easy to access, but there are no straps to ensure that your feet stay put while cycling.
The entire bike desk comes shipped to you in five pieces, which means setting up is a breeze. The 20-inch x 20-inch desk part is ergonomically designed so that you have a good work experience as well as a good workout. You can adjust the desk with a lever and move the entire machine from location to location quickly because it’s on easy-move rollers. The pedals are marketed as silent, which means easier concentration on other tasks.
Overall, the FlexiSpot Deskcise Pro is elegant, with a scratch-resistant exterior and user-friendly design. The desk could easily fit a laptop or notebooks. I found this bike desk to be a successful combination of ergonomic work and a good exercise experience.
- Drawer and cupholder built into desk
- Folds for storage
- Able to upgrade to a Bluetooth option
- Heart rate meter
- Small work surface that can only hold up to 44 pounds
- Machine can be hard to move and store, even if it can fold
Specs: Weight capacity: 300 lbs | Dimensions: 45.3 x 25 x 51.3 inches | Item weight: 71 lbs | Height range: 5’1″ to 6’3″ | Number of resistance levels: 8
The desk on the Exerwork stands out for its sliding function: It can move forward, backward, up, and down, and also tilt at zero, 16, and 33 degrees. The height adjustments range from 41″ up to 45″ which means that this machine can seat a range of people. It’s also great for apartments, considering that it can be folded and stored into a 21.3″ L x 25.5″ W space. The seat should be comfortable because it consists of a 2.5″ thick AirSoft cushion that doesn’t heat up, even after hours of use.
The overall desk space is 24″ L x 16″ W, which makes for a lower area than the desk of the FlexiSpot Deskcise Pro. This is also a hefty piece of equipment at 71 pounds, which means that moving it around might not be easy. There are built-in transportation wheels to alleviate that problem, and the added weight while in use could even make the machine feel more stable.
The great thing about the Exerwork is that it has pulse sensors that monitor your heart rate throughout your workout. (Have you ever wondered if your pulse spikes when you get an email from your boss? Now’s the time to find out!) This bonus feature ensures that the machine keeps you working out safely. You can track your workouts on the MyCloudFitness app if you upgrade to the Bluetooth-capable version.
- Adjustable padded leather seat and desk height
- Silent functioning
- No pedal straps
- Desk cannot be extended
- No back support
Specs: Weight capacity: 285 lbs | Dimensions: 30 x 20 x 50 inches | Item weight: 51 lbs | Height range: 5’2″ to 6’5″ | Number of resistance levels: 8
The Fit Right takes the positives of the FlexiSpot and packages them neatly into a nearly $200 lower price point. The Fit Right bike desk has a stable base with transportation wheels and a folding capability for easy transport. Once folded, it has a 30″ L x 7″ W footprint. It comes partially assembled in the box, so setup is as hassle-free as possible.
The desk has a cupholder and enough space for a small laptop. If you have a larger machine or need more space, the desk could be too small for you. Both the desk and the seat have options to move up or down by about 10 inches each.
You can measure your biking performance over time and in terms of speed, distance, and calories burned. The LCD monitor tracks it all. Go on longer rides with the comfortable leather seat, and do work simultaneously without being bothered. The silent belt drive ensures a smooth biking experience.
- Built-in storage tray
- Has a massage bar that supports your arms
- Can do an upper body workout with included resistance bands
- Desk area is on the smaller side
- No foot straps to secure your feet to the bike
- Assembly required
Specs: Weight capacity: 300 lbs | Dimensions: 28 x 16 x 45 inches | Item weight: 45 lbs | Height range: 4’10” to 6’6″ | Number of resistance levels: 8
This bike desk not only has a massage bar built-in for your arms, but also comes with resistance bands under the seat so that you can do an upper body workout while cycling. The possibilities abound with a FitDesk 3.0. The machine is marketed as quiet and reliable, so whether you’re working out or working on your laptop, or both at the same time, you won’t be bothered. If you like listening to music, you can store your earphones in the desk’s storage tray. This tray is impressive because it doubles as support for a tablet or small computer, so you can cycle hands-free and maybe even incorporate those included resistance bands into your workout.
The desk measures 16″ W x 19″ L and has a non-slip, soft-grip surface. It allows you to read a book, watch a tutorial, or get some work done, with the option to be hands-free. The compact machine is relatively light and foldable, and it’s made of aluminum and steel instead of plastic.
One thing that this bike desk shares with others on this list is that it has eight resistance levels, so you can adjust your workout to suit your physical limitations and comfort. The beach cruiser seat can be adjusted depending on height, and the built-in performance meter tracks your cycling mileage, calories burned, and distance.
- LCD screen shows speed, time, distance, and calories burned
- Fitbit compatible
- Small machine that can fit under desks as low as 27 inches
- High weight capacity
- Lacks the structural stability of a larger bike desk
- No specified height range, so taller people might not get the same range of motion
Specs: Weight capacity: 500 lbs | Dimensions: 24 x 20 x 10 inches | Item weight: 23 lbs | Number of resistance levels: 8
Sometimes you just want the pedaling function without the desk. DeskCycle’s bike pedal exerciser fits under desks as low as 27 inches, and it doesn’t have a desk included. It’s discreet, transportable, and Fitbit compatible. The LCD screen tracks how much you pedal, going up to 1,000 minutes of activity at a time. It also shows speed, time, distance, and calories burned on an easily readable screen.
The pedaler itself is marketed as quiet and smooth with a magnetic precision flywheel, so you can bike while on a Zoom call. It holds up to 500 lbs and has eight different intensity levels ranging from warm-up to muscular toning. The machine is light and has adjustable straps to secure your feet in place.
The lack of a desk attached to this pedal exerciser makes it lighter than other options on this list, but also perhaps the most easily physically moved by your workout. The structural stability of the machine might not be the same as that of a full-fledged bike desk. There’s no specified height range, so taller people might not get the same range of motion out of this machine as shorter folks. A few people in the reviews expressed difficulty with assembling it.