If you’re a busy professional, no doubt you’re struggling to find time to fit in a daily workout. You’re too tired to wake up earlier, don’t have time in the middle of the day, and you’re totally drained by the end of work. A busy work schedule can make it all but impossible to get to the gym.
But what if there was a way to bring the workouts into the workplace? Instead of worrying because you aren’t able to get in your training, you can focus on both your work and your training at the same time. Talk about two birds with one stone!
An under-desk elliptical or cycling machine is a beautiful option for those who are struggling with a lack of time for working out. You can do a workout at any time of the day, all without having to get up or interrupt your work schedule. It’s the perfect middle ground and will certainly make it easy to get in your workout.
Below are the three top-rated under-desk ellipticals on the market, complete with reviews to help you know which your best choice for use at work or in your home office is.
#1 Pick: Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer
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The Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer is the top-rated under-desk elliptical trainer, and you’ll find that it’s just what you’re looking for!
It’s compact enough to fit under any desk, and beautifully lightweight—meaning you can carry it to and from your car with ease. It’s easily stored in a closet to keep it out of the way, or slides under your desk for easy pedaling.
The elliptical trainer is just 21 inches tall, 14 inches wide, and 14 inches long, weighing just 30 pounds. You can use it either sitting or standing, making it perfect for a workout when talking on the phone or typing on your computer.
The multi-functional motor will track your progress, and you can scan your workouts to analyze your performance data via the LCD screen. The knob allows you to adjust the tension of the wheel to make the workouts as easy or hard as you want. The pedals come with a textured surface that will ensure your feet remain securely gripping the wheel—no risk of slipping or sliding around you pedal. You can pedal forward or backward to hit the various muscles in your legs, hips, and glutes. It’s definitely the most versatile and reliable of the under-desk ellipticals.
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This elliptical trainer has a 4.2 out of 5-star rating on Amazon, with over 2,700 reviews from real customers. Here are a few of the reviews:
- Set up is a breeze! Takes 15-20 minutes, and doesn’t require any tools or skill.
- Beautifully silent—one user mentioned that people standing at his desk had no idea he was using it.
- Great quality, and a low price tag.
- Occupies very little space, and is easy to store when not in use. “It takes up little space and is easy to stow away when not in use.”
- Not the easiest to use standing up—requires serious core strength and balance.
- Digital counter is inaccurate, may have glitches.
At just under $90, this is a surprisingly well-priced piece of equipment. It’s not gym-quality, but it’s more than capable of providing years of daily use. If you’re serious about fitting more workouts into your day, this is the equipment for you.
Top Pick: Platinum Fitness Fit Sit Deluxe Folding Pedal Exerciser
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This is more of an under-desk cycling machine than elliptical, but it does the same job of giving you a killer workout while at work. In fact, you’ll find that it’s slightly more high tech than the top-rated product!
The LCD screen displays not only your exercise time, but also your revolutions count, RPMs, and the number of calories burned in your workout. For those who like to track their workout performance, it’s a great tool to help you do just that.
The pedal machine is designed to be used while seated, and you’ll find that it’s very comfortable for you to use from any angle. The quick-folding frame makes it easy to pull out of your closet and use, or to store in a hurry. It’s a no-tool design that you can get started using immediately. There’s even an anchor strap to keep the pedals locked securely in place, preventing you from sliding around (in your wheeled office chair) as you cycle.
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This product has a 4.4 out of 5-star rating on Amazon, with close to 700 user reviews. Here are some of the things users have to say about it:
- Beautifully simple design, very user-friendly!
- Designed to be used right out of the box. Simply unfold the legs, screw on the monitor, and it’s ready to go!
- Very compact; fits under most desks, and the sleek design is great for smaller offices and cubicles.
- Lightweight, and designed to stay firmly in position as you cycle.
- Has the occasional problem with squeaking, but that can be solved by adjusting the tension on the knob. May require WD-40 in some cases.
- Tension tends to loosen with regular pedaling. You may have to tighten regularly.
For the price—just under $55—this is a beautiful piece of equipment. It’s not without its design flaws (overheating, knob loosening, squeaking, etc.), but it does the job of giving you a great workout without having to leave your office. Platinum Fitness PFP2100 Fit Sit Deluxe Folding Pedal Exerciser Leg Machine with Electronic Display, Blue
Top Pick: FitDesk Under Desk Elliptical
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If you don’t have a lot of under-desk space to work with, this is the elliptical trainer for you! It’s designed to use the least amount of space, working with desks as low as 25 inches.
The desk stand gives you data on your workout without having to bend over to check the machine, and you’ll find that it’s easy to adjust the position of the pedals according to your comfort. The operation is smooth and silent. The design makes it easy to position the machine just right using either your hands or feet. Best of all, there’s a built-in rolling massager that will soothe your tired feet. Definitely a machine built with comfort in mind!
This product has a 4.0 out of 5-star rating on Amazon, with 250 user reviews. Here are some of the things users have to say about it:
- Excellent range of motion designed for short and long legs. The adjustable difficulty settings are compatible with anyone of any fitness level—from minimal to challenging.
- Feels very solid and well-built, durable feel with sturdy materials.
- Smooth and quiet operation, with a good range of resistance.
- Built for comfortable cycling/pedaling.
- The pieces of the foot massager are brittle plastic and may break if they are struck. Be careful with its use!
- The dimensions are very long, making it tough to fit under a desk with a backboard or set against the wall.
At $170, this is the priciest of the elliptical machines on our list. There are a few “cons” that make it a bit too pricey to be considered for top dog, but it’s definitely an elliptical machine that delivers results. If you’re already tried the top-rated product and are looking for something new, this is a good second choice!