An In-depth Evaluation of the Value and Efficacy of Under Desk Treadmills - Are They Truly Worth the Investment?


A woman utilising an under desk treadmill while working from home

There are plenty of celebrities spruiking the benefits of a desk treadmill. You might have seen Victoria Beckham tweet about how fabulous it is to ‘work and work out at the same time’. And her photo wearing five-inch stiletto boots on the treadmill - a sign of how effective the workout was!

Here’s how desk treadmills work. Some use a portable treadmill belt that fits under an elevated desk so you can work on your laptop while walking. When you have had enough of walking, you move the belt out of the way, reduce the desk's height and pull up a chair. Other desk treadmills are a complete unit.

If you’ve seen one in action, you might be considering jumping on the treadmill bandwagon. Before you do, there are a few things to consider. 

First, start slow. Don’t try doing hour after hour of walking as you could get injured. Second, think about your posture. A treadmill pulls your feet backward, so many people tend to lean forward while walking and this can cause neck and back pain. Third, it's okay if it's not for you. 

Benefits of Using a Desk Treadmill

Thinking of getting one? Here are some reasons why you should consider an under-desk treadmill.

Improved Fitness

Being on a treadmill for part of your workday will get you plenty of steps. If you do enough of them, it may start to show with a lower number on the scale. Being active is not only good for your physical but also your mental health.

Feeling Motivated

A desk treadmill can get your circulation moving and the brain ticking in the morning. For some people clocking a few thousand steps while clearing their inbox is what they call productivity heaven. If it makes you feel less sluggish at work, then treadmill walking may be your perfect fit.

Drawbacks of a Desk Treadmill

Social media might be telling you again and again that the treadmill desk is the way to go, but it also has its downsides. 

Safety First

Treadmills aren’t small, so you’ll need a fairly big office to fit a treadmill desk. You also need to factor in space around the treadmill. But what's most important is the space behind the treadmill so you have somewhere to land in case the belt shoots you off. You also need a smaller area on the sides to hop off in a hurry if you need to. 

Questionable Productivity 

If you have a job that requires you to give your full attention or type at a reasonable speed, chances are you may not be that productive while treading the treadmill. You might be better off working and then using a treadmill while watching TV or listening to music. You’ll still be doing two things at once!  


If you’re walking and working, you’re multitasking. Numerous studies in recent years have shown that multitasking divides our attention and limits our ability to perform at our best. Most people need to give their full attention to one task to complete it to the best of their ability.

Moving the Treadmill 

You may not want to walk or stand on a stationary treadmill all day, so you’ll need more space to move things around. If you’re using the portable treadmill belt version, you will need space to move it in and out of place and somewhere to store it that isn't too far away. The other alternative is to have a second desk for sitting (which involves extra space) and be willing to move your computer around.

Alternatives to a Desk Treadmill

There are safer, more enjoyable options that might not be insta-worthy but more suitable for your lifestyle.

Sit Stand Desk

We are all trying to sit less and be more active during the day, but if a desk treadmill isn’t for you, there are better alternatives. A standing desk will get you up instead of sitting all day and will take the pressure off your hips and lower spine. When you’ve had enough of standing, the desk lowers at the push of a button, and you’ll be sitting within seconds.   

Take a Walk Outside

There’s always the old-fashioned way of walking. You can get in your steps by hitting the footpath at lunchtime and before or after work. Walking outside allows you to get some fresh air and give your eyes a break from looking at your computer screen. This way, you'll be most productive while you work and enjoy time outdoors going for a walk.  

Call Ergolink on (08) 9240 7066, visit our website, in person at our showroom, or contact us online for more information about office equipment that helps you stay active.