The Treadmill Desk Trend: Is It Worth The Hype?

The Treadmill Desk Trend: Is It Worth The Hype?

Standing at work is not a new thing. People have been doing it for years as a way to decrease the amount of time they spend sitting down behind a desk during their 9-5. 

Business Insider actually tested the standing treadmill desk back in 2013, way before it was a social media trend. In the same year, The Huffington Post claimed that“Sitting Is the Smoking of Our Generation.” 

More recently, we’ve seen a resurgence in the number of people using a treadmill (or even a stationary bike) under their standing desks to increase their physical activity. Let's face it:  sometimes we just don’t have the time to go for a walk during our WFH lunch breaks - no matter how many times we tell ourselves we will. 

So what’s the deal with the treadmill desk trend? Well, we’ve done a deep dive on all things standing treadmill desks, what their benefits are and our top tips to get the most out of it.  

What Is The Standing Desk Treadmill Trend? 

The standing treadmill desk trend re-emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic when the majority of us were forced to retreat to our homes. 

Our entire lives revolved around staying indoors, with the lines between our work and home lives blurred. While sitting behind a desk was the norm in the office, working from home took away a lot of incidental activity (like walking to the train station or taking a walk to grab lunch). 

To make up for the lack of physical activity, people had to get creative and find new and inventive ways to keep their daily steps above the recommended 10,000 stps. That’s where the treadmill desk trend comes in. 

If you’re like us and downloaded TikTok during the pandemic, you would have seen hundreds of people purchasing and reviewing their standing treadmill desks - we couldn’t keep up with all the different options. 

So, what actually is a standing treadmill desk? Well, a treadmill desk is a slimmer and smaller version of a treadmill that fits underneath a standing desk that you can use while working or studying from home. It's a great way to reduce the amount of time you spend sitting and add some extra movement to your work day.

What Are The Benefits Of The Standing Treadmill Desk? 

So, what’s all the fuss about treadmill desks? Well, we all know exercise is important for both our physical and mental health.  

Physical inactivity is a major global health problem - particularly as a result of the pandemic. Research demonstrates that spending too much time sedentary or sitting down directly correlates to an increased risk of heart diseases, type 2 diabetes, and even breast and colon cancer.   

How can a treadmill standing desk help?

But the research shows that a few simple lifestyle changes can make a big difference in our health and wellbeing at work.

A 2012 study revealed that reducing the time we sit down at work to just four hours can lower the negative health impacts of being seated all day.

To reduce the number of hours spent sitting we can break up our days by walking on a treadmill, while still being productive at work (or watching TV, we don’t judge).  

What are the benefits? 

So, why should you consider investing in a treadmill to add to your WFH setup? Here are just some of the potential benefits:

  • Increased productivity: studies have shown work performance and time management all improved on days employees exercised. With a stand-up desk and treadmill combo, you can boost your focus and get more out of your day. 

  • Stress reduction: research suggests that walking while working (vs. sitting) leads to lower stress levels when tackling tricky tasks. Walking also releases those feel-good endorphins, which are perfect when you’re working to a tight deadline or need to produce your best work.

  • Lowers blood pressure: walking helps to increase blood flow, and can even help to lower blood pressure. No matter what stresses your job throws at your, you’ll be able to keep your body in great shape while getting through your to-do list.

  • Tips for getting the most out of your standing treadmill desk

    There are so many ways to make the most out of your standing treadmill desk. Just scroll on TikTok to see how people have customised their desks to work best for them. 

    In case you don’t have time, we’ve rounded up our top tips to maximise a treadmill desk:

  • Get the right gear: invest in a good pair of shoes, a smartwatch to track your step count and a high-quality standing desk to help you sit and stand easily throughout your day.

      • Don’t walk all day: believe it or not, walking all day isn’t great either. Break up your sitting time by walking on the treadmill for a couple of hours throughout your workday.

  • It’s better to consume vs. create content while walking: sometimes it can be a little tricky to type while walking on the treadmill. So, try walking in times you’re in a Zoom meeting or you need to review a report, rather than when you need to type up a long email or document.

  • Establish a routine: make a routine that sets out some realistic walking goals - you probably won't (and shouldn’t) walk all day. It’s better to be realistic and consistent!  

  • Ready to create a flexible, healthy and adaptable work environment?

    Creating a productive and flexible work environment means you make the most out of your day-to-day schedule. Once you’ve picked up a work-friendly treadmill, grab a standing desk that gives you the freedom to stand and sit throughout the day.

    Are you ready to build a beautiful hybrid office space that promotes work wellbeing and productivity? Recess takes the hard work out of furnishing your agile work environment, so you can focus on putting your best foot forward at work.

    Discover our office furniture and score our Active Bundle (packed with everything your team needs to stay focused all day long).