Although this blog is about Home Fitness, it is actually ironic that I first saw the DeskCycle Under Desk Exercise Bike and Pedal Exerciser at work and immediately knew that I needed one for my home office. It has now become one of my favorite gadgets while watching TV as well.
If you are like most people and sit way too long, a DeskCycle could provide a solution to your sedentary lifestyle.
This article will provide a comprehensive review of one of the most popular and best selling pieces of under the desk exercise equipment so that you can decide if you need a mini exercise bike.
In a hurry->
What Is A DeskCycle?
Deskercise, according to Wiktionary, is "the performance of exercises at a desk as a means of promoting health and fitness." This was my new word for 2018! Who knew I needed to deskercise!
Did you know people who exercise before or during work are supposed to be happier and less stressful as per the latest study conducted by the University of Bristol? In fact, they are more productive than employees who don't work out at all.
This makes sense. Most of us are too busy to find time to exercise. The majority of us can sit at our desk for 10-12 hours at a stretch without any sort of exercise. That is where the DeskCycle (or often spelled Desk Cycle) comes in handy.
What Are the Types Of Under Desk Exercise Equipment?
While researching the DeskCycle, I discovered that there are 4 types of exercise machines that can fit under your desk:
The DeskCycle fits in the mini exercise bike category. It is a mini bicycle without a seat or handlebars. It is literally just a pair of foot pedals attached to a device that fits under your desk.
The product has been creating quite a buzz in the market recently. This under desk pedal exerciser is designed to help negate the negative effects of sitting all day.
It helps people who don't have time to exercise to work out while sitting either at a desk, chair or sofa . It is also a great stress reliever. It is used for rehabilitation and recovery from illness as well.
The Hallmark Channel recently previewed the DeskCycle to illustrate how easy it is to use!
How To Use A Desk Cycle?
Sit At Your Desk - This pedal exerciser sits under your desk so that you can exercise while performing your normal tasks like reading emails or any other task while seated. That way you can work as well as work out your body at the same time. The cycle works well with desks under 27 inches
Sit In Your Favorite Chair or Sofa - This is a great way to exercise while watching TV, reading, playing video games or even talking on the phone!
The cycle has 8 different resistant settings for you to choose from. Pedaling faster, exponentially increases the resistance. At the maximum level you will work up a sweat. But you probably will not be able to focus on what you are doing. So don't expect a full-body workout. At the lower levels, it is a breeze to multitask and burn calories!
What Are Key Features Of This Under Desk Mini Exercise Bike?
Let's look at the top features that the DeskCyles has to offer. The graph below is from the DeskCycle site. I have provided the most popular useability and performance benefits in a separate group below.
Ultra-Smooth Pedal Motion
The smooth pedal motion is important to make the working out an unconscious activity. That way you can concentrate on whatever you are doing while pedaling the cycle. Additionally, the smoother the motion, the easier it is on your joints.
A quiet operation ensures the cycle won't disturb the people around you. This is important if you are using the cycle at the office or in a small apartment. It is so quiet that you can even talk on a conference call while pedaling!
The bike is ten inches in height - which is about five inches shorter than most of the other mini bikes on the market. This means that it will fit under most desks without you bumping your knees when pedaling.
You can pedal in both a forward and reverse direction. This is a nice feature because pedaling in reverse works different muscle groups than in a forward motion.
Adjustable Pedal Straps
The pedals are large and can be adjusted with the attached Velco straps to fit any shoe size. This is important when you have different family members with different size feet using the same bike.
LCD Display and Stand
The DeskCycle comes with an LCD display unit that monitors your speed, distance, calories burned and time spent. The unit keeps tracks of up to 1000 minutes of activity before resetting. A battery is included.
Online Calorie Counter Access
You have access to an online calorie counter app that calculates your calories burned based on height, weight, age and gender for a more accurate measurement.
The assembly is very easy and it comes with an easy to follow manual. Just attached the legs and pedals to the bike with the supplied wrench! One reviewer on Amazon reported a 10 minute installation. In addition, there are YouTube videos that assemble the bike in less than 7 minutes.
It can easily be moved from one place to another since it only weighs 23 pounds. You can use while watching TV and then move it under your home office desk or move it out of the way for easy storage when not in use.
Security Lock Slot
If security is an issue, the product has a built-in slot where you can insert a Kensington type computer lock to secure the bike to one of your desk legs. A lock, however, is not included, but would be worth the purchase depending where you use the bike.
Wide Resistance Range
The product comes with 8 resistance levels. The more resistance, the more you increase your heart rate and burn more calories while pedaling. The recommended level at your desk is 3 or less. You can adjust the resistance levels with a knob on the front of the cycle.
The measurements are 20” width, 24” length, and 10” height and and weights 23 pounds. The wide 20 wide base means there will be significantly less movement while pedaling.
Since you are seated on a chair while pedaling, the bike can carry up to 350 lbs without any problem. You should note that the bike is not designed to use when you are standing.
The product is durable and built with high quality heavy-duty components. There is a full one year warranty on parts and labor (this is for US customers and others should their local retailer).
Responsive Customer Support
You want quick service when you have a problem and the responsiveness of the support team has been a recurring theme in Amazon reviews.
7 Tips For Using the DeskCycle At Your Desk
Pedaling the desk cycle once you have it set up is quite easy. You only need to sit back and pedal.
Adjusting the exerciser to fit your work space may take a few extra steps. Factors to consider are height of your desk, position of your monitor, position and type of chair, as well as the flooring.
If you use the cycle on a carpeted floor at a lower resistance, you don't have to be too concerned about pedaling. But if you use a swivel chair or the floor is slick, you may need to attach the supplied tether strap.
Listed are 7 tips to optimize your DeskCycle usage while at your workstation:
- 1Start out slowly as with any new activity to avoid soreness
- 2Pedal in a downward motion to keep the cycle from moving
- 3Keep your back supported. This may require a lumbar cushion behind your back.
- 4Don't rock side to side. Pedal with your legs not your upper body.
- 5If your knees hit the desk, try lowering your chair
- 6Place a mat under the cycle if your flooring is slippery
- 7Attach the supplied tether to the leg of your desk if you use a swivel chair
How Does Desk Cycle vs Sitting vs Walking Compare?
How much energy are you really expending with the bike? The following chart is based on a study performed at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
What Are the Differences Between DeskCycle vs DeskCycle 2?
The DeskCycle 2 was released after the original. In addition to the all of the features of the current model, these new features are included:
- Ability to lower the pedals by another inch. It will come with a pedal height of just 9" and can be adjusted to 10 inches.
- Activity logging that will save your activity history. You will be able to track your progress over time.
- Integration with FitBit. You can keep all your fitness activity in one place by uploading your DeskCycle statistics to FitBit.
Who Does A DeskCycle Benefit?
The most important benefit of using a desk cycle is the exercise you get. With the desk cycle, you can easily perform more than 1-2 hours of exercises a day. This product is effective for both adults as well as children. At the lower resistance levels, anyone can use the mini bike. Recommended age ranges are from 5 to 100!
A DeskCycle is an excellent way to get those steps in for people who sit too much! It is especially ideal for people who are too busy, cannot afford fancy gym memberships or just want to obtain a cardio exercise at home. Desk cycles are also used in rehab and recovery from an illness or injury.
If you are a fitness enthusiast looking to replace your home gym, this may not be the product for you. It works well as addition to a regular fitness regime.
Can you believe that desk cycles have recently been used in schools to promote learning? Studies show pedaling decreases fidgeting and helps with concentration at both the middle and elementary school levels.
Even young students are using the DeskCycle. Click on the picture to see how students are benefiting from desk cycles.
In addition, Middle schoolers in Wake County, North Carolina are also taking advantage of desk cycles. Read about the success of the pedal power in Wake County.
What Are the Pros and Cons of An Under Desk Bicycle?
What Are Other Customers Saying About the Desk Cycle?
Based on the ratings, most people are quite pleased with the Desk Cycle. 92% of customers give it a 4 or 5 star.
One customer averages 50 miles day and has lost 4 pounds in one week.
When questioned about the noise level, one customer said "I don't ever have to mute my phone, there is not any noise to mute."
Any one can use the machine since there is no impact to joints. One person called it "A Type 2 Diabetic's new best friend."
Does It Come Assembled?
No, it does not, but the assembly is rather easy. The instructions are straightforward.
The product comes with the tools need to complete the assembly.
Can You Obtain an Intense Cardio Workout With the DeskCycle?
Yes, you can. The higher the tension and the faster you pedal, the more you will sweat.
If you bike at 30 miles per hour with a resistance level of 3 or more, you will receive an intense workout.
Can You Focus While Exercising?
This depends on you. If you can multitask, you should not have a problem using a lower resistance setting.
It probably would be better to pedal intensely for 10 minutes and stopping prior to your concentration period.
How Noisy Is the Desk Cycle?
The bike is not noisy at all. Customers talk on the phone while riding.
Final Verdict - Is Desk Cycle Worth It?
The Desk Cycle reviews are in. This is an Amazon's Choice product with than 1930 customers reviews. This is a solid bet.
Overall, this is a great product and you can purchase this desk cycle for less than $160 on Amazon. This is considerably less expensive that a full size desk bike.
The DeskCycle is covered by a full one-year warranty and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. In fact, the company is willing to give a full refund and even pay for return shipping in case you find that the product is not for you after giving it a fair try for 30 days.
If you are looking for something to reduce your sedentary lifestyle while not breaking the bank, this is the machine that should be on the top of your list.
For a comparison of other under desk equipment, read the Deskercise article, Under Desk Exercise Equipment for Health and Fitness.