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Advantages and Drawbacks of Treadmill Desks



tr1200 dt3 under desk treadmill
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We are both lucky and misfortunate enough to live in an era of huge technological progress. On the one hand, we have the countless benefits brought in by digital communication and automatized systems. On the other hand, most of us are working jobs that require almost no physical effort at all and leave very little room and energy for exercising.
Considering these two opposites, we might end up browsing websites like, looking for a treadmill desk in hopes of mixing business with pleasure successfully. But there are just as many advantages as there are disadvantages to working at a treadmill desk. So to reach a conclusion, we need to go over each category in part and form a better opinion. However, right before we dive into the pros and cons of a treadmill desk, we should address one question:

Are Walking Desks Really that Popular?

Unbelievably, the answer to this one is a definite positive. Treadmill desks are right at the center of a growing movement that supports and promotes healthy office living. Come to think about it. It was only a matter of time before someone working a desk job would consider exercising at the same time. As such, the number of treadmill desk adepts has grown exponentially in the past couple of years.

  • Treadmill Desk Advantages

Both employers and employees draw the same benefits from working at a treadmill desk, so without further due, let’s find out exactly what they are:

1. Protection against Negative Health Conditions

According to experts, 5 hours a week spent on a treadmill desk will protect us against diabetes, heart diseases, high blood pressure, and, just as important, depression. That’s not to say that we should set this target right from the start when the recommended average is of 300 minutes per week.

2. Increased Concentration and Alertness

According to several studies conducted so far, the process of walking improves the brain’s cognitive functions. As such, persons working at a treadmill desk are more likely to stay focused and alert throughout the entire shift.

3. Increased Level of Burned Calories

Another study conducted by the Sports Medicine British Journal has shown that treadmill walking at work burns 119 extra calories per hour, as opposed to sitting at a desk all day long.

4. Lowers the Level of Stress and Improves Brain Function

Much like any other type of physical exercise, working at a treadmill desk can seriously help us burn off all that anxious energy and stress that accumulate at pretty much any type of modern job. After all, it’s a well-known fact that walking makes our brains perform better and help them stay alert.

5. Facilitates Typing, Reading, and Calling

Treadmill desks feature several useful options that can make it very easy for us to walk and perform a series of other job-related tasks at the same time. For example, the ‘walk sedately’ option allows us to make calls or read emails in an entirely silent moving environment.

  • Treadmill Desk Disadvantages

But as previously mentioned, treadmill desks also pose a series of risks and disadvantages. Here are the main ones that we need to consider:

1. Injury Risk

Even if you’re completely focused on both work and walking on the treadmill desk, accidents can happen to anyone. The risk of losing your balance and falling from this type of machine is quite high.

2. Treadmill Desks take Up a Lot of Space

Especially if you’re working in a small cubical or a medium-sized office, fitting in a treadmill desk might prove hard to accomplish or downward impossible. These machines take up a lot of space, so they are more convenient for large offices.

3. High Cost

Quality comes at a cost, so the average treadmill desk model retails at around $2,000+. While working at a treadmill desk might seem like an affordable long-term investment for an employer, in financial terms, the situation changes dramatically for employees.

4. Low Level of Comfort

Most treadmill desks are quite stable, but they will take some time to get used to it. During this period, the treadmill desk will prove slightly uncomfortable, possibly lowering the speed of your job-related actions due to its unnatural feel.

5. It can be a Distraction for Co-Workers

If you are the only person in your office working at a treadmill desk, you can bet your colleagues and co-workers will have a hard time getting used to it. On many occasions, you will end up distracting them, thus making their job harder.


And now that we’ve gone through all the major ups and downs of using a treadmill desk, you take your time and place them in balance. Depending on your situation and needs, working at a treadmill desk might be a perfect solution or, on the contrary, an unnecessary whim.

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