One way to boost your health is to use an under-desk treadmill. This exercise machine is also a good alternative for those who have small gym spaces. More importantly, it keeps you active at work.
In this FAQ post, let’s learn about treadmill desks and discover if it’s expensive, effective for weight loss or suitable for running.
That way, you get to answer your all-important question: is an under-desk treadmill for you?
1. Do under desk treadmills have an incline?
Under desk treadmills usually do not have an incline function. But some models have a slight incline that you can adjust for an uphill slant walk. You can do this using the built-in levelling feet. The upward tilt on this kind of under desk treadmill is only minimal, about 5 degrees at the most.
Keep in mind that while some under-desk treadmills have an incline feature, ergonomists do not recommend this function. The reason is that walking on an incline treadmill while working takes your body out of the neutral position.
It may cause strain on your joints and back. It also explains why most treadmill desks do not have an incline feature.
2. Are under desk treadmills good for running?
Some under desk treadmill models are good for running, especially those with a speed limit of 19kph. While you can run on an under desk treadmill, make sure it has arm support and a console in front for your hands. Running without handgrips will be very difficult for users.
It is also important to note that under desk treadmills are designed for use at low speed. Specifically, the maximum speed of most under desk treadmills is just under 8kph.
So, if you intend to buy a treadmill for running or muscle building, a regular treadmill is a better choice. This treadmill has a speed that suits intense running and cardio exercises.
Also, remember that an under desk treadmill is for doing minor movements while working to counter a sedentary lifestyle. If you plan to buy an under desk treadmill for running, look for a model that can reach at least 19kph.
3. Are under-desk treadmills quiet?
Desk treadmills are very quiet, making them suitable for professional and home environments. These treadmills have shock-absorbing material, which lessens walking noise and provides extra cushioning to the deck. Treadmill desks are also not as large as the ones you see in the gyms, so they produce minimal sounds.
Some popular treadmill desks generate around 35 decibels, equivalent to a whisper level or white noise. Also, the quietness of using under desk treadmills depends on the shoes you are wearing during exercise. So make sure to wear shoes that don’t produce unnecessary noises.
There are also some things that you can do to make your under desk treadmill quieter. One is by making sure that your treadmill belt is well-lubricated. Lubricating the treadmill belt will cut down some friction noise and extend the lifespan of your machine.
Another thing that you can do is to make sure that the treadmill belt is centred. Sometimes the treadmill belt slips, and this can produce some noise. When this happens, adjust the treadmill belt to its proper position. Lastly, placing an equipment mat can also help in noise reduction.
The treadmill desk can help you lose weight because it can increase your energy outflow. You can burn about 100 calories an hour when you stand and walk on a treadmill desk while working. However, using a treadmill desk should be accompanied by a healthy diet and exercise to optimise weight loss results.
It is best to be mindful of your calorie consumption while using a treadmill. This habit should impact the amount of weight loss you want to achieve for your body.
The more walking time you spend with your treadmill desk per day, the faster you’ll see significant results.
But remember not to overdo it. After all, the purpose of a treadmill desk is to make you sit less at work and increase your standing or walking time.
5. How fast should I walk on a treadmill desk?
Treadmill desks are for a slower speed than regular treadmills. And so, a slow walking pace of one mile per hour would be the most ideal for an under desk treadmill. A walking pace on the street is approximately 4 to 6 miles per hour. Slow walking would be difficult at first, but you can achieve it with some practice.
If you are new to using a treadmill desk, you can start walking for 15 minutes at a time or twice a day during your first week. If you think you can handle it, you can slowly increase your time using a treadmill desk. Add shorter bouts after a few days that can help break your sitting hours.
Remember that it is vital to pace yourself when using a treadmill desk to avoid muscle strain and injuries. You cannot walk on a treadmill desk for the entire workday. If you are a newbie, it is also advisable to do some stretching first or even a short walk to warm up your body.
Another thing to remember is that walking at the same speed for a very long time can cause delayed-onset muscle pain or soreness. To avoid this problem, change your speed by one or two-tenths of a kilometre from time to time.
Also, ensure that you wear comfortable shoes when walking on a treadmill desk. It is also vital that you set up your computer at the right height to prevent neck, shoulder and back problems. Observe proper posture when walking on a treadmill desk, too.
6. How much weight can you lose using a treadmill desk?
Researchers say that you can lose around 20 to 30 kilograms per year if you use a treadmill desk for 2 to 3 hours a day. You can achieve this with a healthy diet and if you won’t take any extra calories or snacks after exercise.
A different study also revealed that, on average, people could lose around 1.4 to 3.5 kilograms if they use the treadmill desk for about 1 hour per day.
However, treadmill manufacturers tend to overestimate the number of calories burned, making values inaccurate on calorie burn trackers. So, people should be careful when considering weight loss data provided by a company or calorie counter.
7. Are treadmill desks expensive?
The cost of treadmill desks ranges from a couple of hundred to a few thousand dollars. It varies according to its brand, type and model. If you already have a treadmill, you can buy an attachment desk that can cost more or less a hundred bucks.
Treadmill desks can be pretty expensive, especially if you buy a top brand with an all-in-one treadmill desk system. But you can always opt for more affordable options and skip premium models.
There are also some add-ons that you can buy for your treadmill desk to make your workstation complete. These add-ons, such as anti-fatigue standing mats, balance boards and storage options, can add to the cost.
Even though treadmill workstations can be pretty expensive, they can last up to 10 years.
8. Can I place treadmill desks on the carpet?
You can use treadmill desks on the carpet for as long as it is not too thick. Ideally, treadmill desks should be on firm footing, making thick carpets unsuitable. If you plan to put it on a carpeted surface, make sure that it won’t interfere with the stability of the treadmill desk. Also, ensure that this won’t impede your movement.
If you wish to put your treadmill on a carpet, one technique is to have a mat between your treadmill desk and the carpeted floor. The treadmill mat may be an additional expense on your part, though.
It is also crucial to habitually clean underneath your treadmill because your treadmill belt can accumulate dust. Accumulated dust on your treadmill belt can affect the performance of its motor.
9. Will a treadmill desk damage the floor?
Treadmill desks can be heavy and leave marks or indentations on the floor or carpet. They can also scratch the floor if the treadmill base falls or slides.
It is not advisable to put your under desk treadmill on a hardwood floor because it can cause the treadmill to slip or move around. Your weight and the impact of running and walking on the treadmill desk can damage the floor, too.
One solution to prevent floors from damage and scratches is to use treadmill mats. Rubberised treadmill mats will keep the machine from moving, protecting your floor and reducing noise.
The treadmill mat should be slightly larger than your machine, though. So make sure you measure your treadmill first before buying one.
10. Can a treadmill desk be used with a standing desk?
Yes, most under desk treadmills can go with a standing desk. If you own a height-adjustable standing desk, you will be able to find a treadmill that will fit under it.
All you need to do is measure the width of the space in between the frame. Compare it to the under desk treadmill’s width to ensure it will fit underneath your standing desk.
Ensure at least an inch of clearance on both sides of the treadmill and your standing desk. Allocate at least 2m of allowance around your treadmill to be sure.
While most treadmills can fit underneath a standing desk, all-in-one treadmill stations will not work on a standing desk since it already has a built-in table.
When buying a treadmill, read everything that’s in the package. It can be inaccurate when you base your choice on the promotional pictures.
Sometimes you think you’re buying an all-in-one treadmill when the image has a desk and table included. But the picture is only to show how the treadmill will look when placed under a desk.
One advantage of an all-in-one treadmill is that you don’t need to worry about treadmill dimensions since it already has a table on it. If you’re buying a separate treadmill and desk, check the treadmill height. You want to stay comfortable when exercising and working.
If the height of your sit-stand desk cannot accommodate the height range that fits you, your workstation may be too low. It can result in discomfort and back pains.
11. Are treadmill desks more portable than the standard treadmills?
Under-desk treadmills are more portable compared with regular running treadmills. They are much more compact and lightweight, making them easier to carry or transport. Most treadmill desks have caster wheels, too.
If you are looking for a portable desk treadmill, you must select the most lightweight treadmill desks to trim your choices. Some of the lightest under desk treadmills are small and weigh about 23-82kg. The lightest under desk treadmill on record weighs 18kg.
12. Is it possible not to sweat when using a treadmill desk?
It is possible not to sweat while walking on a treadmill workstation. By setting the pace at a low speed of 3.2kph or below, you can lessen the risk of sweating while walking. When you walk at around 5kph or more, you’re already brisk walking, increasing the chance of sweating.
However, it would all still depend on your body’s composition. Some people sweat easier than others even at low speed.
There are other ways to avoid sweating while walking. For instance, try inserting some short breaks between walking, exercising at a cool temperature, and wearing light and breathable clothing. Drinking cold fluids can also help lessen the risk of sweating.
13. Is it safe to walk backward on a treadmill desk?
You can’t change the running belt on treadmills. Since it only runs in a forward direction, you cannot make the treadmill go backward. If you wish to walk backward on your treadmill desk, you need to face the other way around.
However, when you read the safety warning of treadmill desk manufacturers, you’ll find out that they don’t recommend this. If you still want to walk or run backward, start at a slower speed and hold onto the handrails.
While it’s not practical to walk backward on a treadmill workstation, and it may even affect productivity, there are benefits of walking backward.
For instance, it engages and strengthens your leg muscles from walking in a different direction. You can try walking backward on a treadmill workstation when taking calls or conversing with a colleague.
Sitting for long hours at work is not best for you. And using a quality under desk treadmill can surely help you avoid this. This machine not only improves health but also boosts work performance and productivity.
Hopefully, these FAQs helped you realise these benefits and decide whether a treadmill desk is your next home gym addition.