WHETHER YOU sit at a desk all day and you’re looking to get in more movement, or you’re rehabbing a lower body injury (and some models work for upper body, too!), an under-desk cycle is a great option! “Under desk cycles are excellent options to combat the negative effects of a sedentary job,” says Jess Malpelli, PT, DPT, physical therapist at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, NY. “Increase your heart rate while on a business call? Yes, please!”
While these devices shouldn’t be thought of as an alternative to walking or exercise, they’re a great supplement to your fitness routine. Under desk cycles allow you to get in some low-pact strides, so you can still reach your daily activity goals whether you’re nursing an injury (they keep you in a nice mid-range, so there’s no extreme bending for the knees) or you just have a sedentary job.
We’ve rounded up some of the best—and most quiet—options on the market. Choose from these options for an under-desk exercise bike to keep you moving on the daily.
Best Under-Desk Treadmills | Best Exercise Bikes | Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes | Best Home Gym Equipment | Best Treadmills | Best Folding Exercise Bikes
DeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||24″ x 20″ x 10″|
|Product Weight||23 lbs.|
Himlay Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||15.7″ x 12.5″ x 7.8″|
|Product Weight||7.63 lbs.|
Best for Stability
TABEKE Mini Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||16″ x 12″ x 13″|
|Product Weight||8.6 lbs.|
Sunny Health & Fitness
Under Desk Magnetic Cycle Pedals Mini Exercise Bike
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||20.5″ x 16.5″ x 10.5″|
|Product Weight||19.1 lbs.|
Wakeman Fitness Portable Under Desk Stationary Pedal Machine
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||19.5″ x 14″ x 9.5″|
|Product Weight||5.78 lbs.|
Best Foldable Option
Vaunn Medical Folding Under Desk Bike
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||18.25″ x 15.2″ x 11.25″|
|Product Weight||5.15 lbs.|
|Resistance Levels||Light to Medium|
Cubii Move Compact Desk Elliptical
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||21.7″ x 19.7″ x 9.7″|
|Product Weight||17.6 lbs.|
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||33.6” x 20.3″ x 37″ – 46.3”|
|Maximum Seat Height||31.5″|
|Minimum Seat Height||22.4″|
What to Look for When Shopping for an Under-Desk Bike
Before purchasing one of these machines, be sure to check out the dimensions of the product itself, and compare that with the height of the desk you plan to place it under to ensure it will fit.
Design and Weight
It’s important to pay attention to the design of an under-desk bike. “One of the biggest complains I hear from patients is that the structure is flimsy, or the machine shifts forward a lot when they place their feet in,” says Malpelli. Look to see if the machine comes with a non-slip pad, an anchoring strap, or choose one that weighs more so it stays put.
Also, if you’re looking to use the bike for lower and upper body workouts, be sure to purchase one that can do both. “Be sure to position the machine correctly, too, otherwise you’ll just be reinforcing bad posture,” says Malpelli.
Under desk bikes are a good option for those who sit at a desk all day. But if you’re planning on using the machine during work—especially while taking phone calls—you’ll want to make sure you choose one that isn’t too noisy. Otherwise, you may end up purchasing it and not using it if the noise level is loud and distracting.
Amy Schlinger is a health and fitness writer and editor based in New York City.