Imagine yourself comfortably seated, burning off those extra calories and eliminating excess fat. Day by day you’re thinner and healthier. This is the reality an under desk elliptical offers.

With an under desk elliptical, you can slim down and improve your fitness level without changing up your daily routine. The only change is that while you’re seated watching TV or writing emails at work, you’ll be peddling away. It’s a life-changing adaptation that will improve your health, boost your energy levels, reduce stress and even help you control your weight! Adding exercise to your routine has never been easier.

But, which under desk elliptical will do the trick? This article will guide you through everything you need to know about under desk ellipticals. From the pros and cons of this type of exercise machine to a review of the best models, a guide to choosing your under desk elliptical and best practices once you’ve purchased one, we’ll cover it all.

Ready to learn about this unique exercise equipment you can use even while clocked in? Here we go:

Why Choose an Under Desk Elliptical?

Man Using An Underdesk EllipticalThere are many reasons you might consider purchasing an under desk elliptical. While it’s not a magic bullet, but it does offer a number of advantages. When compared to other exercise equipment, the under desk elliptical is unique. This is what makes it so attractive and enticing for users. But, for the same reason, it also has some disadvantages.

Learn more about why you might choose an under desk elliptical by reading about the advantages and disadvantages this equipment offers:


There are plenty of reasons you might love an under desk elliptical. Here are the main advantages you can hope to enjoy should you purchase one:

  • Enables Multitasking

In a survey, 42% of respondents blamed a lack of time when asked why they don’t exercise. Is this your excuse?

Most of the time in order to exercise, you have to carve time out of your day. You certainly can’t workout while you’re at the office. But, with an under desk elliptical trainer, all of that changes. It becomes possible to work out and work, or complete another seated task, all at the same time. Whether you watch TV, write emails or do office work while peddling, you’re multitasking in a new way.

Most under desk elliptical trainers are so quiet that your boss and colleagues won’t be bothered by your new routine. This means you can multitask to the max with your under desk elliptical machine.

  • It Fits Under A Desk

Full-sized ellipticals are prohibitively large for many homes and office spaces. While you might prefer the full size feel and layout, they simply aren’t practical and won’t allow multitasking.

Under desk elliptical machines slide under a table, desk or can sit on your living room floor without taking up a lot of space. In fact, most models are also quite portable so that you can move them around to wherever you need them.

  • May Help You Lose Weight

Under desk ellipticals can help you burn calories when you normally wouldn’t. For many people, this is enough to tip your caloric balance and whittle away at the extra pounds you’ve been holding on to.

If you talk to people who own an under desk elliptical, you’ll discover that many have achieved this common goal. So, if you could stand to lose a few pounds, the under desk elliptical may provide an easy way to help you achieve your goal.

  • It’s Convenient

Studies show that the more convenient it is for you to exercise, the more likely you’ll do it. There’s little that’s more convenient than a pedal machine under your desk, where you sit all day anyway! If you’re hoping to exercise more, an under desk elliptical is a sure-fire way to go.

  • May Reduce Health Risks

Did you know that sitting all day is a health risk? Even if you exercise during part of the day, if you spend the majority of your day sitting, you run certain risks such as increased rates of cancer, a higher risk of heart disease, getting a stiff spine, weak bones, insulin spikes and more.

However, more movement in your routine can help mitigate these risks. Even pedaling at your desk on an under desk elliptical could help, studies suggest.

  • Low Impact

Similarly to a recumbent bicycle in terms of the seating position, under desk elliptical machines are easy on your joints. Don’t worry about hurting your hips, knees or back when working out with this exercise equipment. As long as you have a comfortable seat that supports your back, under desk ellipticals are a great type of exercise for those who suffer joint pain or who struggle with the mobility required to perform other types of exercise.


Despite their many advantages, under desk ellipticals aren’t perfect either. What are some of the drawbacks?

  • May Require Different Seating

Your comfortable rolling office chair may present some challenges for using your under desk elliptical. If you are able to lock your wheels, it might work. Otherwise, rolling chairs will have you sliding all around as you try to pedal.

The best seating will offer you great support for your back and also provide stability. You may need to experiment with different chairs to find the best, most comfortable option to use while pedaling on your under desk elliptical.

  • Could Disturb Others

While most under desk ellipticals are as quiet as church mice, some are reportedly distracting for office mates. If you purchase a model that’s slightly noisier or that develops a squeak, this might be disturbing for others in your home or workplace. Make sure you read reviews carefully before you purchase your elliptical so that you don’t face a noise issue.

  • Multitasking Might Not Be Your Strength

Some people have discovered after purchasing their under desk elliptical that multitasking isn’t their strength. While it doesn’t require a lot of mental energy to pedal while working or completing another task, if you’re concentrating on something, it can be a distraction. Not everyone finds it pleasant to pedal while working, reading, or doing another task.

Realistically, you can only discover if the under desk elliptical is right for you by trying it. Given their low price and accessibility, it’s probably worth the risk to try it out. Even if you don’t like the idea of using it all day, you can probably at least use it while reading emails or performing more menial tasks.

Who Can Benefit from an Under Desk Elliptical?

Using An Under Desk Elliptical For Health and FitnessSo, who’s the best candidate for an under desk elliptical? Under desk ellipticals are perfect for almost anyone. But, they are best for those who have sedentary jobs and who want to add more activity to their daily routines. However, they’re not a substitute for other exercise. It’s still recommended that you do other exercises such as upper body workouts, weight lifting, and some more serious cardio on a regular basis. 

Another reason you might benefit is if you have trouble with higher impact exercise. The nature of the under desk elliptical is such that it’s easy on the joints and comfortable to use.

Don’t think that just because you already exercise regularly that you don’t need an under desk elliptical. These little machines can do a lot to reduce the risks you face it you spend a lot of your day sitting. By keeping your blood circulation and heart rate up, you gain many health benefits by adding an elliptical under your desk. In addition, you’ll maintain muscle tone and enjoy increased energy. You can continue to exercise like always, but the elliptical will help you limit the damage of hours of sitting. (1)

So, for anyone who sits for long periods of time, an under desk elliptical offers benefits.

Do you sit for long periods of time? If you’re ready to learn more about the available under desk ellipticals on the market, here are the details you need to know:

Fitnessator’s Top Pick

Cubii Pro Under Desk Elliptical

Cubii Pro Under Desk EllipticalWhy We Love It:

Keep track of your exercise achievements with ease with the Cubii Pro. This machine not only allows you to exercise while sitting, but it also keeps track of calories, strides and distance for you, syncing to your phone or health app. It’s smooth, quiet and portable.


  • Syncs to Fitbit, Apple Health Kit or your phone
  • 8 resistance levels
  • Features a convenient carrying handle

Things to Consider:

The Cubii is designed to fit under fairly low desks. You’ll need about 3-4 inches between the top of your knees and the bottom of the table or desk for best results.

It should also be noted that because the Cubii Pro is one of the only models offering Bluetooth connectivity and syncing, it’s pricier than other, similar models without this feature.

Customer Reviews:

Customers love the Cubii thanks to its quiet, smooth functioning. However, it’s important to note that you may need to make an account with the company to take advantage of the tracking and syncing features.

Who Should Purchase this Product:

If you love your Fitbit or Apple Health Kit and want to have digital records of your progress, the Cubii Pro is worth the investment. In addition, the product is well-built, operates smoothly and is quiet, making it a great choice for anyone seeking a quality under desk elliptical. However, if you’re looking for an elliptical you can use while standing, this isn’t the product for you.

Fitnessator’s Runner Up

FitDesk Under Desk Elliptical

FitDesk Under Desk EllipticalWhy We Love It:

This little elliptical will fit under even desks as low as 25 inches tall. In addition, this little wonder of a machine allows you to change the resistance level with your foot. It does all of this while offering you a smooth, quiet workout you’ll love.


  • 8 resistance levels
  • 8 inch rotation height allows for use under just about any table or desk
  • Foot-shifter that allows you to change resistance levels without crawling under your desk
  • Sit the display detailing your progress on your desk

Things to Consider:

This under desk elliptical offers a few unique features that make it a very user-friendly machine without being prohibitively expensive.

Customer Reviews:

Generally, customers love this machine, how it functions and its practical features such as the foot shifter, movable display and low rotation height. Some people struggle with the resistance levels, saying that there isn’t enough variation in difficulty.

Who Should Purchase this Product:

If you’d love an elliptical for seated use only that offers practical features that make it easy to use, this is the machine for you. While it’s not the cheapest model on the market, it’s worth the extra money for the movable display and foot shifter. In addition, it’s well-built and functions quietly.

Fitnessator’s Honorable Mention

Bionic Body Under-Desk Elliptical

Bionic Body Under-Desk EllipticalWhy We Love It:

This all-in-one workout station offers versatility


  • Can be used standing up or sitting
  • Includes resistance bands
  • Features a handle for easy moving
  • 8 levels of resistance

Things to Consider:

While very affordable and versatile, this product isn’t the shortest. So, if you’re tall or need it to fit under a low desk, opt for a different product.

Customer Reviews:

Customers are very happy with this product. They love its sturdiness and the fact that it features a handle for easy positioning.

Who Should Purchase this Product:

Choose this product if you’d love an elliptical that you can use while standing or sitting and you won’t require it to fit under a low desk.

A Basic Affordable Product

JFit Under Desk and Stand Up Mini Elliptical

JFit Under Desk and Stand Up Mini EllipticalWhy We Love It:

This is a great, basic machine that is also affordable. In addition, the machine can be used both standing up or under the desk. For versatility and a great machine that’s durable and affordable, the JFit is a great choice.


  • Can be used while standing or sitting
  • Features resistance levels
  • Features a handle for easy moving
  • Rollers allow the machine to be easily moved around without lifting it

Things to Consider:

Some complaints of squeakiness prompted the company to include a small bottle of oil with the product. If you keep it oiled, squeaks should be eliminated. Also, this product features a higher profile and may not fit under lower desks.

Customer Reviews:

Customers are thrilled with the price and functionality of this versatile product.

Who Should Purchase this Product:

If you need a basic, good elliptical that you can use either standing up or sitting down, the JFit is a great, affordable choice. Just make sure your desk is high enough to accommodate the product if you intend to use it in this way.

An Earlier Version

FitDesk Under Desk Elliptical

FitDesk Under Desk EllipticalWhy We Love It:

Similar to the more recent FitDesk model (our Runner Up), this product is slightly larger, but offers many of the same practical features at a lower cost.


  • Low rotation profile allows it to slip under most desks
  • Foot shifter for easy changing between resistance levels
  • 8 resistance levels
  • Desk stand display so you can track your progress

Things to Consider:

It isn’t possible to use this machine while standing up. However, the machine offers many positive practical features such as a foot shifter, moveable display and low rotation profile.

Customer Reviews:

Customers are generally pleased with the product and love that it can fit under just about any desk or table easily.

Who Should Purchase this Product:

If you’re on a budget and can’t afford the newer FitDesk model, give this one a shot!

Choosing the Best Under Desk Elliptical Machine

The best under desk elliptical machine for your needs will help you achieve your goals. Everyone has slightly different needs when it comes to exercise equipment. Here’s what you should keep in mind:


Everyone has budget concerns when it comes to making purchases. So, when you choose your under desk elliptical, be sure to know how much you can realistically spend on a machine. This may influence your decision in a big way, so check those bank accounts before you look too seriously at any machine. Once you have an amount in mind that you can spend, you can rule out products that are too expensive or make choices about the level of quality you’d like.


Will you be using your elliptical strictly for under your desk or table? As you can see in our product reviews, some elliptical machines allow you to workout in both seated and standing positions. Decide if this is important for you before making your purchase.

A standing position will offer you more of a complete work out as you’ll have to work hard to stabilize your core while standing. Other models also include straps you can use to give your arms, back and shoulders a workout. If you’re hoping for this versatility, an under desk elliptical model that allows stand up workouts is best for you. However, if you’re only planning on using the elliptical under your desk, there’s no need to opt for a model that allows standing.


Check reviews carefully for durability. When purchasing home fitness equipment, you want to make sure it will last as long as possible. It’s preferable to purchase products made of high quality materials including durable plastics and metals. So, double check information about the product’s quality and durability before making your purchase.

Desk Height

Before purchasing, measure your desk or the table where you’ll be using the elliptical. Some users report that their knees bump their desk when using their under desk elliptical. Of course, your height will also be a factor in this.

This factor is simply something to keep in mind as you’re shopping. The last thing you want is to purchase a product and then discover that you can’t use it under your desk because your knees bump it. So, do your research about the space you’ll need to use the elliptical.


While most under desk ellipticals are very quiet, some can develop a squeak or may be noisier. Check through reviews and the information on the elliptical carefully before you purchase. Also, consider how you’ll be using your under desk elliptical. Obviously, if you’re using it in a quiet office, noise will be a bigger issue than if you’re planning on using the machine in the privacy of your home.

How to Make the Most of Your Under Desk Elliptical Machine

While simply using your under desk elliptical machine occasionally may help you achieve your health or weight loss goals, you’ll get much more out of your machine if you go the extra mile and make a plan. Here are our top suggestions for making the most of your under desk elliptical machine:

Set Goals

Did you know the average American adult puts on one to two pounds a year? Don’t be a part of that figure.

Studies suggest that as little as one hour of pedaling a day can help you lose up to 5 pounds per year and prevent weight gain. Spread this hour out over 6 ten-minute sessions or 4 fifteen-minute sessions and you’ve got it covered! This shows that with minimal effort, you can avoid gaining weight and even lose some weight.

One hour a day is a perfectly reasonable goal to work up to. However, with a bit more effort and some motivation, you can eventually make it to an hour and a half or even two hours! Keep track of your time spent so that you can watch your progress.

Most under desk ellipticals will also allow you to track calories burned and steps taken. Create weekly or monthly goals, adding a small amount of challenge each time.

Make Other Lifestyle Changes

Depending on your goals, make other lifestyle changes to reach them. For example, if you’re hoping to lose weight, consider taking a look at your diet. Cut down on eating out and focus on eating a balanced diet that focuses on whole grains, lots of vegetables and lean proteins.

What else can you do? While you’re incorporating more movement into your life, bring this attitude elsewhere. Park at the far end of the parking lot and take the stairs instead of the elevator.

A combination of lifestyle changes can turn your life around, giving you more energy and a slimmer waistline.

Hold Yourself Accountable

Do you have trouble with accountability? Talk to a friend who has similar goals and commit to talking to each other every week about your progress. This will help you stick to your plans and actually use your elliptical machine.

Other accountability tools include logging your time on the elliptical, giving yourself a reward when you reach your goals, and scheduling in your exercise plans on your calendar. These tools can help you make a habit out of your new exercise routine.

Keep Other Exercise Routines

Don’t ditch your other exercise routines and practices just yet. More is always better! Under desk elliptical machines are just a great way to avoid sitting still for long periods of time doing sedentary activities. In addition, if you can fit in higher intensity workouts and weight lifting to build strength, you’ll see even more health benefits and positive results for your body.

The Bottom Line on Under Desk Elliptical Machines

WIth an under desk elliptical, you can make a small change that will transform your life! Lose weight, feel more energetic and get rid of those excuses not to exercise.

Practical, affordable and functional, under desk ellipticals offer the perfect solution for people with sedentary jobs to get moving!

Have you purchased an under desk elliptical? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!