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The Best Under-Desk Bikes

Three different people sitting on a couch, an office chair, and an accent chair and pedaling under-desk bikes.
Vaunn/Vaunn/DeskCycle

A sedentary lifestyle can pose health risks and lead to harmful habits that may be hard to change if not prevented. If you find it challenging to juggle exercise with hours at the office, stay active with an under-desk bike.

Buying Guide for Under-Desk Bikes

A man reads from his phone as he sits on a modern chair and pedals on an under-desk bike.
LifePro

Why buy an under-desk bike?

Staying in shape can be a struggle, especially if you spend most of the day sitting in front of a desk or having health issues requiring low-impact fitness training. Under-desk bikes make a great solution. They mimic pedaling an exercise bike while taking up a fraction of the space and often coming at a fraction of the price. They’re great to use for low-impact physical therapy to high-intensity workouts.

What should you consider in an under-desk bike?

  • Resistance: In terms of resistance levels, not all under-desk bikes are built the same. Thus, some models may be suitable for a light workout or physical therapy but will not provide an intense workout for those who want one. Those who wish to break a sweat and test their limits will need to spend a little extra on a model that offers more advanced magnetic resistance functionality.
  • Noise: Unfortunately, not every under-desk bike features a whisper-quiet operation. Finding a quiet model is your best option if you will be using your under-desk bike at the office or anywhere with people. Luckily, plenty of great budget-friendly and advanced under-desk bikes operate almost noiselessly.
  • Size: If you plan on using your under-desk bike in tight spaces, such as under your work desk or at the dining room table, be sure to measure the length before selecting a product to ensure it will be a good fit. Additionally, compact and foldable products may be easier to store when not in use, so consider this factor as well.

What are the benefits of using this type of bike?

Under-desk bikes are a convenient way to burn excess calories while staying productive at work. While great for exercise, they’re also a helpful tool for habitual fidgeters to keep restlessness at a minimum. And if you’re recovering from an injury or working with a disability, your healthcare provider may recommend a hand- or foot-propelled mini stationary bike to help you regain strength.

Our Picks for the Best Under-Desk Bikes

Best Overall

DeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser

A sporty-looking under-desk bike for pedaling forward and backward to target different muscle groups.

Pros: The magic behind the DeskCycle is its innovative design. Slip your feet into the adjustable pedal straps and start spinning. Your peddling increases the momentum of your spin; to get a more challenging workout, adjust the resistance knob. When you do so, the built-in magnets on either side of the flywheel move toward each other, creating an opposing force. Increase the resistance again, and still—not a sound. No one around you will know that you’re burning calories as you answer emails at work.

Cons: You can’t adjust the height like you can with the DeskCycle 2; the LCD display doesn’t track as many miles, either.

Bottom Line: Besides the DeskCycle’s clever design, the bike features a removable LCD display. The device displays your speed, distance, duration, RPM, and calories burned. The simple design provides a convenient, no-nonsense ride. 

 

Best Value

Vaunn Medical Under Desk Bike

This folding under-desk bike features a lightweight and portable design and is very quiet.

Pros: This bike offers a great low-resistance workout, quiet operation, and a smooth pedaling experience. It has an LCD showing your time, speed, and performance. There is an adjustable foot band that can also adapt to different sizes. Use the handle at the back to move it back into storage.

Cons: The bike is relatively bulky and is prone to skidding across smooth surfaces. It’s not as portable as advertised. The handle works to move the bike when you’re done with it, but not to travel with it.

Bottom Line: This is a solid option for an activity for a low-resistance, therapeutic workout session. It’s also a budget-friendly tool to keep yourself alert at work. The compact Hausse under-desk bike fits nicely under most office desks.

 

Best with Resistance Bands

FlexCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser

A bike for peddling with the feet and hands, plus resistance bands for a full-body workout.

Pros: The surprising features of FlexCycle exercisers just don’t seem to end. Unlike most under-desk bikes, it has two pedal sets—foot pedals and arm pedals. That difference alone gives you the freedom to create a range of workouts. Use the resistance bands as you pedal for a full-body workout. The FlexCycles comes with an app that you can access through Apple or Google play store.

Cons: This is not the under-desk bike you want to take to work if you want the full-body workout. And if you’re already in great shape, you may want to look for at-home gym equipment for a more challenging workout.

Bottom Line: It makes a wonderful way to stay active while watching TV and for physical therapy workouts. The added resistance bands create an excellent challenge to increase coordination and full-body strength.

 

Best Design

TABEKE Under Desk Bike Stationary Pedal Exerciser

This budget-friendly product features quiet, smooth operation and a space-saving design.

Pros: This is a budget-savvy option for those who value dependability over workout intensity. This model features a unique, foldable design to simplify storage and comes with an anti-skid PVC mesh mat to aid instability. The pedals are ergonomic and designed for both arm and leg workouts.

Cons: The pedal’s sleeves may not accommodate specific foot sizes.

Bottom Line: It’s a darn-good bang-for-your-buck option. It’s functional, efficient, and reliable at its core. Plus, it’s one of the best options for easy storage. The bike folds down with a simple pull of a metal ring. 

Final Thoughts

If you find yourself seated at your desk for most of the day, why not accomplish a good workout while you’re at it? With so many choices to accommodate most workout levels and intensities, you can find one that suits your needs. An under-desk bike is an excellent option to get you moving and keep you healthily balanced as you get desk work done.

Zachary McCarthy Zachary McCarthy
Zachary McCarthy is a freelance contributor to LifeSavvy. He has a bachelor's degree in English from James Madison University and experience in blogging, copywriting, and WordPress design and development. In his free time, he can be found frying up Tangsuyuk or watching Korean films and MMA events. Read Full Bio »
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