What is a bike desk?
By now, you’ve probably heard of the numerous scientific studies conducted over the past five years pointing to evidence that living a sedentary lifestyle is detrimental to our health and well-being. This detriment has less to do with the act of sitting and more to do with the lack of movement and activity. Bike desks allow users to stay active while working at our desks and computers.
While some bike trainer desks can be used for a cardio workout, the true benefits are attributed to slow pedaling over longer periods throughout the workday. The goal is simply to trade motionless sitting for light activity. While it is certainly possible to pedal fast enough to speed your heart rate up and produce a sweat, your work productivity can be greatly hindered by this kind of activity. Slow and steady tends to win this race.
What are the benefits of a bike desk?
Newton's Law states that an object in motion stays in motion, and that could not be more true when describing the benefits one receives from pedaling while working. Research at Clemson University reported an improvement in mood, motivation and task engagement for bike desks users, without sacrificing or hindering professional output. Bike desk usage also counteracts that afternoon crash we've all become so accustomed to. From a health standpoint, besides the obvious benefit of burning more calories while pedaling, studies also found heart benefits, reduction in diabetic pain and increased flexibility.
What type of options exist?
There are a variety of bike desks on the market from under-desk bikes and pedal exercisers to fully integrated bike desks. Some options offer resistance or workout programs, while others simply allow pedaling at your desk. Prices for an under-desk exercise machine can begin as low as $15, while commercial quality integrated workstations can run upwards of $1600 or more.Which option is right for me?
What Should I Look for In a Bike Desk?
To shop for an under desk bike with confidence, you should consider noise level, assembly time, and portability. You can also note the spec options that various bike desks have. Unassembled desk bikes require more time to set up, but LifeSpan’s under desk bikes feature limited assembly times and simplify the process. When you use LifeSpan treadmills, you can get to work without sparing any time.
Consider the following aspects when shopping for an under desk bike:
Size and Portability
Single user vs multi-user
Setting: Where do you plan on placing your bike desk?
Options are wide open if you are looking to add a bike desk to your home. Anything from a simple pedal exerciser to an integrated bike desk will work as long as you have the space for it. If used in your personal office or cubicle at work, a pedal exerciser can easily be placed underneath your desk – just make sure you have leg room.
If you have access to a height adjustable desk either at home or work, an under-desk bike can roll up to the desk when you need a break from standing. If you have the space for an additional desk, or if you’re looking for something that can be shared by employees, students or patrons, a stationary bicycle desk is the way to go.
Size and Portability
After considering the space for your under desk bike, you need to choose a corresponding model that fits within that space. If you have a smaller space, you should look for models with portability features. If you have the space for a larger model, you won’t need to compromise your preferences to save space.
Budget: What are you budgeting constraints if any?
Setting a budget is always important but you should be flexible to ensure that you get the right product for you or your business. For example, if you expect the bike desk to garner multiple hours of use per day, it would be wise to budget for a commercial rated bike desk to better stand up to wear and tear. A bike desk does no one any good with an out-of-order sign posted to it.
There are many different types of under desk bikes and understanding the various shapes and sizes is critical to making an informed decision. The first thing you need to consider when choosing an under desk bike is assembly and installation. There are two primary under desk bike designs to choose from. The first is a one-piece assembled machine. The second is an unassembled bike with a manual.
One piece models don’t require assembling and all you need to do is purchase the model as is. These models are convenient but will be a hassle if you want to move it down the road. These types of desk bikes can also be a hassle to move if you have stairs and you don’t want to go through the trouble of lugging your bike around the house.
When deciding on your under desk bike, you should consider whether the bike has a wide range of resistance levels available. Some models have limited resistance options and others only offer one resistance setting. If you want to build your resistance and burn more calories, you should vary your resistance levels.
People might prefer equipment that pairs with other devices, such as bluetooth, to simplify their workout and help them monitor their progress. If you want more applications to keep an eye on your progress, heart rate, speed, and difficulty that pairs with your phone, tablet, or computer.
Noise should be another determinant of your under desk bike choice. You don’t need a noisy motor or loud pedal strokes distracting you, especially if you have an under desk bike at work. How do you expect to conduct Zoom meetings with a loud motor in the background? An easy way to avoid the distraction of under desk bikes is to test them before purchase. Testing your bike will give you a clear idea of whether you can use it in a professional environment.
Single vs Multi-Use: Will the bike desk be used by just you or will there be multiple users?
Strictly speaking, the more users you expect the better quality the bike desk should be. As you move up in price you can expect higher quality and more reliable components. While budget friendly options are just fine for a single user at home, common areas such as a coffee shop, classroom or airport lounge should invest in top-quality products to ensure reliability and durability over the years.
Goals: What health or cognitive outcomes are you looking to achieve?
Are you looking for simple activity during the workday, an exercise bike to burn calories and lose weight, or a combination of both? As mentioned before, most of the benefits come from slowly pedaling during the workday but that doesn’t mean that you can’t benefit from cardio exercise if the bike desk is built for it.
Of course, it’s nearly impossible to do any real work while pushing yourself physically, but reading emails or surfing the internet is more than doable. Some bike desks have readouts similar to what you would find on a quality gym bike such as calorie counting and distance cycles.
Cost is critical when considering any purchase and under desk bikes are no different. Most people are comfortable paying for products as long as their investments are backed. When choosing an under desk bike, consider your budget and most important features. You won’t need to overextend yourself financially to get a high-performance under desk bike. However, if you know you will use all of the features that justify a larger purchase, you should consider the higher-end under desk bikes with more specs.
Guide to Shopping for an Under Desk Bike
If you decide an under desk bike is the right decision for you, there are a few things to consider. Chiefly among these factors, your space, portability, and budget should form the foundation of your decision-making process.
At LifeSpan Fitness, we believe you deserve a fitness solution that fits your lifestyle. Whether at work or at home, our under desk bikes ensure you can maximize your fitness routine while staying productive. Our whisper-quiet motors, simple portability, and high-performance specs offer flexibility and dependability at an affordable price.
Contact us today to learn more about the treadmill that fits your lifestyle best.