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Treadmil Reviews and Comparisons Guide

Best Treadmill Desk Reviews and Comparisons 2017

If you’re worried about spending too much time sitting in front of your computer, a treadmill desk or under-desk treadmill could be the perfect solution.

It’s a well known fact that sitting for long periods of time is damaging to your health, but with an increasing number of office jobs, it’s often difficult to avoid.

With a treadmill desk you’re able to combine walking with working to maintain productivity while reducing health risks such as heart disease and obesity.

But with so many options now available, how do you know which one is right for you? Is it better to choose one of the big well-known brands such as LifeSpan Fitness, combine an under-desk treadmill with a freestanding workstation desk, or should you attempt to create your own DIY treadmill desk?

In this step-by-step guide we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about finding the best treadmill desk for your budget. This includes an in-depth feature list to help you find the perfect combination of treadmill and workstation.

We’ve also written a series of in-depth treadmill desk reviews for some of the biggest names in the industry, including LifeSpan Fitness, Rebel Desk, ProForm, Exerpeutic, iMovR, and NordicTrack.

What is a treadmill desk?

A treadmill desk, also known as a treadmill workstation or walking desk, is a combination of treadmill and computer desk that allows you to perform basic office tasks while walking.

The treadmill is usually a cut down version of the ones you’ll find in commercial gyms, with a lower belt speed, no incline options, and a lack of preset workout programs.

If you already own a suitable computer desk, you can also buy the under-desk treadmill on its own, which is a popular choice with brands such as RebelDesk, iMovr, and LifeSpan Fitness.

Why buy a treadmill desk?

The main reason for buying a treadmill desk is to increase your level of physical activity and reduce the likelihood of developing health problems associated with sitting for long periods.

Recent occupational projections from a Georgetown University study indicate that as of 2010, sales and office support occupations represent the bulk of all jobs, employing 36.6M people. Not only that, but in the 10 years that follow, 14 million more positions will be filled, representing the bulk of all new jobs created between 2010 and 2020.

Occupation growth in the USA between 2010 and 2020

Although sales and office support jobs are often thought of as requiring more time at a computer desk than other professions, this number doesn’t include managerial and professional office jobs or blue collar.

Research has linked sitting for long periods of time with a number of health concerns, including an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, and obesity.

At the same time, studies have indicated numerous health benefits that come as a result of regular walking, including the fact that just 25 minutes of brisk walking a day can add up to 7 years to your life.

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) has also identified that walking may:

  • Lower your risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease
  • Help you burn more calories
  • Strengthen bones and muscles
  • Improve your current mood
  • Improve your balance and coordination
  • Maintain a healthy weight

So with more people working sedentary office jobs for the majority of their day, treadmill desks are an excellent way to maintain productivity without the associated health risks that come with sitting for long periods of time.

Brands reviewed by USA Home Gym

Before buying a new treadmill desk, it’s worth knowing what each of the different companies has to offer. By comparing the price and features of similar designs from different brands you can be sure of getting the best value for money.

That’s why we’ve compared and reviewed treadmill desks from the biggest names in the industry, including Exerpeutic, ProForm, NordicTrack, LifeSpan Fitness, iMovr, and RebelDesk.

Although LifeSpan Fitness has the largest product line dedicated to under-desk treadmills and treadmill workstations, each company has their own unique selling points.

For example, LifeSpan treadmill bases are designed specifically for walking, with no incline settings and a top belt speed of 4 mph. In contrast, the ProForm and NordicTrack treadmill desks have a more conventional treadmill design, with incline settings of up to 12% and a top belt speed of up to 11 mph.

Throughout this guide and in each of our reviews we’ll walk you through the pros and cons of each model, including the design features, warranty coverage, console functions, and assembly options.

Best treadmill desks by price

PRICE RANGE: $0-$1000

PRICE RANGE: $1000-$1500

PRICE RANGE: $1500-$2000

Top 10 treadmill desks for home offices

NameProduct FeaturesPrice Range($)Rating (1 to 5)Review
LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 Treadmill Desk
LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 Treadmill Desk


  • 20"W x 56"L walking surface

  • 350 lb weight capacity

  • Up to 6 hours of continuous use

  • Speed range 0.4 - 4 MPH

  • 2.25 HP motor

  • Manual desk height adjustment


$$5
LifeSpan TR1200-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill
LifeSpan TR1200-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill


  • 2.25 HP Motor

  • 0.4 to 4.0 MPH range

  • 350 lb capacity

  • Up to 6 hours of continuous use

  • 20"W x 50"L walking surface


$4
LifeSpan TR5000-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill
LifeSpan TR5000-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill


  • 20"W x 50"L walking surface

  • 0.4 to 4.0 mph belt speed range

  • 3.0 HP continuous duty motor

  • Up to 10 hours of continuous use

  • 400 lb capacity

  • Electric Desktop Height Adjustment


$$4.5
iMovR ThermoTread GT Office Treadmill Base
iMovR ThermoTread GT Office Treadmill Base


  • 3.0 HP motor

  • 20"W x 50"L walking belt area

  • 400 lb weight capacity

  • 0.5-2.5 mph belt speed

  • iMovR CloudStation workout data sync

  • Step-up height under 5"


$$4.5
LifeSpan TR1200-DT7 Treadmill Desk
LifeSpan TR1200-DT7 Treadmill Desk


  • 2.25 HP motor

  • 20"W x 50"L walking surface

  • Electric desk height adjustment

  • 350 lb weight capacity

  • 0.4 to 4.0 mph belt speed

  • Up to 6 hours of continuous use


$$$5
LifeSpan TR800-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill
LifeSpan TR800-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill


  • 2.0 HP High Torque Continuous duty motor

  • 0.4 to 4.0 MPH range

  • 18"W x 52"L belt size

  • Up to 3 hours continuous use

  • 300 lb weight capacity


$4.5
ProForm Thinline Desk Treadmill
ProForm Thinline Desk Treadmill


  • 12 MPH QuickSpeed Control

  • -3% Decline to 12% Incline

  • 34 Workout Apps

  • 300 Lb. Weight Capacity

  • 3.0 CHP Mach Z Commercial Plus Motor

  • 20" x 60" running area


$$$4
Exerpeutic 2000 WorkFit Desk Station Treadmill
Exerpeutic 2000 WorkFit Desk Station Treadmill


  • 400 lb weight capacity

  • Power Incline range from 0 to 15 percent

  • 4 ft from the treadmill belt to the desk top

  • 1.5 HP motor

  • 20"W x 40"L walking surface

  • Speed Range from 0.4mph up to 4 mph


$4
Rebel 1000 Treadmill
Rebel 1000 Treadmill


  • 2 mph top belt speed

  • 250 lb weight capacity

  • 1.5 HP motor

  • 18"W x 50"L walking surface


$3.5
NordicTrack Treadmill Desk
NordicTrack Treadmill Desk


  • 350 lb weight capacity

  • 3.0 CHP durx commercial plus motor

  • 20"W x 55"L walking surface

  • 10 MPH speed, 10% incline

  • IFit compatible


$3.5

Top 10 design features to look for

When you’re buying a new treadmill desk, knowing which features are a must-have and which ones you can compromise on can save you hundreds of dollars.

That’s why we’ve included the list below as a quick reference guide to the features offered by leading treadmill desk brands.

  • 1. Size of walking area

    Most desk treadmills will have a belt surface that’s much shorter than on standard cardio treadmills. That’s because the maximum belt speed is often much lower, so you don’t need the extra space for your full running stride.

    As a general guide, most cardio treadmills that support running will provide you with a belt surface of 20″W x 58″L, with some top-of-the-line models offering 22″W x 60″L. But under-desk treadmills, such as the LifeSpan TR1200 and TR5000, are closer to 20″W x 50″L.

    There are two main exceptions to this rule, which are the NordicTrack and ProForm Thinline designs. These treadmills offer a much larger belt surface (22″W x 60″L for ProForm and 20″W x 55″L for NordicTrack).

    In this situation our preference is for the ProForm Thinline treadmill desks, as you can fold the desk out of the way to access more of the belt surface for your running workouts. In comparison, the NordicTrack belt is 5″ shorter, and the console is fixed which further limits the amount of belt you actually have access to.

    As a general guide, LifeSpan say that their 20″W x 50″L walking surface is enough to support user heights of between 4’10” and 6’8″ at the top speed of 4 mph. So if you’re looking for an under-desk treadmill or treadmill desk that supports walking and working, this should be ample space for most users.

  • 2. Size of desktop work surface

    Surprisingly, very few treadmill desks list the size of the work surface in their specifications. This is compared to height-adjustable workstations that list every dimension you could ever need.

    If you’re looking for a treadmill desk combination that provides you with enough space for a dual monitor setup, your best option would be one of the LifeSpan DT5 or DT7 designs. These each include a 38″W x 29″L work surface as standard, but for an additional $50 you can upgrade this to 48″W x 29″L.

    If you need more space we recommend buying an under-desk treadmill on its own, then finding a height adjustable desk that’s wide enough to support your setup. It works out more expensive, but ensures that the workstation you’re building can better support your work environment.

    Several well-known height-adjustable desk brands include VariDesk, AFC Industries, and Workrite Ergonomics.

  • 3. Height adjustment system

    If you plan on using your treadmill desk on a regular basis, it’s important to find the right combination of treadmill and workstation.

    Treadmill desks from LifeSpan include the treadmill base as standard, with two options for the workstation; the DT5 and the DT7.

    The DT5 desks include a manual height adjustment system, where you can loosen a set of hand wheels at the front of the frame before raising or lowering the desktop to the required height. The DT7 version uses an electric height adjustment system, where you can use controls on the console to raise and lower the desk at a speed of 25mm/second.

    However, not all combination treadmill desks are the same, and the Exerpeutic 2000 only offers a fixed-height work surface that cannot be raised or lowered. This makes it much more difficult to work at the same time as walking, especially if you plan on using the 10% incline.

    If you’re not buying a treadmill and desk combination, you could be able to use an existing office desk and combine it with one of the VariDesk designs. This is usually a more expensive option, but does give you more choice in terms of the workstation design, and can switch from sitting to standing positions in just 3 seconds.

  • 4. Maximum belt speed

    Most light commercial treadmills have a top speed of 11 to 12 mph, but for standing desk treadmills it’s usually either 2 mph or 4 mph.

    The belt on the Rebel Treadmill 1000 has a top speed of 2 mph, while the iMovR ThermoTread GT is capped at 2.5 mph. LifeSpan Fitness take this a step further and set the maximum belt speed to 4 mph, but you can change this to 2 mph in the settings menu if required.

    In most standing and walking at 2 mph will be the optimum level for maintaining productivity while still enjoying the benefits of a more active lifestyle. It’s unlikely you’ll find any under-desk treadmill with a belt speed of over 4 mph, unless you buy one of the ProForm treadmill desks (12 mph on the Thinline Pro) or the NordicTrack model (10 mph).

  • 5. Workout performance tracking

    Modern treadmill consoles display a variety of workout feedback, from belt speed and incline gradient through to heart rate and even a Google Maps view of your running route (iFit). So what can you expect from an under-desk treadmill?

    On most models the entertainment options are non-existent. This means no built-in speakers, no MP3 connectivity, and no support for tablets or HDTV screens.

    That being said, you can still choose from a wide range of designs that allow you to maintain a history of your workout performance, such as total step count, duration, and number of calories burned.

    This is something that’s included with all LifeSpan Fitness treadmill desks, where you can sync your workout performance via Bluetooth straight to the Active Trac app.

    The ProForm Thinline collection is also an excellent option thanks to being iFit enabled, making them arguably the best choice of treadmill desks for workout tracking and customized workouts (annual membership fee required).

    The NordicTrack treadmill desk is iFit compatible, meaning you need to purchase the iFit module separately, and you don’t have the same convenient tablet shelf built into the console. But in both cases you need to already own a tablet to access any of the iFit settings if you want to work while you workout.

    Although some people have reported connectivity problems with the app, LifeSpan is still our preferred choice for workout performance tracking, but the iMovR ThermoTread GT with iMovR CloudStation (released in 2016) is definitely worth a look.

  • 6. Incline range

    There are mixed opinions over whether an incline is something to look for on an under-desk treadmill, or something worth avoiding.

    In our opinion it can be a nice option to have if you’re looking for a way to burn more calories when walking, but we certainly wouldn’t rank it as a ‘must have’ feature.

    In fact, LifeSpan Fitness, one of the biggest names in treadmill desk design, haven’t included incline as a feature on any of their machines. Although they don’t provide a link to scientific studies, their website states that this is because ergonomists believe walking at an incline while working takes your body out of a neutral position and places strain on your back and joints.

    Exerpeutic is one of the only treadmill desks we’ve seen to include an incline range (10%). ProForm and NordicTrack also include it as a feature on their treadmill desks, but they also provide many of the features associated with a light commercial treadmill designed for running. So whether they recommend walking and working at an incline is unclear.

  • 7. Motor power

    Because there’s no official rating guidelines for treadmill motor power, it’s difficult to make direct comparisons between different brands, as they’ll often use slightly different rating systems.

    Generally speaking the most powerful motor you’ll find is 3.0 CHP, which is what’s used by ProForm, NordicTrack, LifeSpan’s top-of-the-line TR5000 treadmill base, and the iMovR ThermoTread GT.

    We found the Rebel Treadmill 1000 from Rebel Desk to be the least powerful, with a 1.5 HP continuous drive motor. This is the same as on the Exerpeutic 2000 WorkFit treadmill desk, but the Exerpeutic model has a much higher weight capacity (300 lbs vs. 250 lbs for the Rebel Desk).

    Depending on your budget we would recommend a motor power of between 2.0 HP and 3.0 HP.

  • 8. Treadmill deck design

    If you’re buying a treadmill and desk combination, it’s important to check the specs for the running deck. This includes the deck suspension system, maintenance routine, and where possible the materials used.

    Several major companies have also started including their own unique features, such as LifeSpan’s Intelli-Guard™ and Intelli-Step™. Intelli-Guard™ acts as a safety feature to pause the belt if you step off for more than 20 seconds, while Intelli-Step™ acts as a pedometer, recording when your foot strikes the belt.

    If you have the choice, aluminum side rails are always better than non-slip plastic, and try to find a treadmill with a reversible running deck, as it helps to evenly distribute any wear and increase its life. Non-scuff aluminum side rails can be found on the iMovR ThermoTread GT and LifeSpan TR5000 treadmill bases.

    All LifeSpan desk treadmills also feature a 6 independent compression shocks system to reduce the impact on your joints when walking. This is similar to the 6 compression shock system used by iMovR, and the cushioning that’s provided throughout the deck on ProForm’s Thinline models.

  • 9. Folding or non-folding

    If you’re looking for a true under-desk treadmill, the chances are you’ll be using it on a regular basis. So with most under-desk treadmills weighing over 100 lbs, you probably don’t want to raise and lower the running deck every time you start work.

    But if you have limited space and want to reduce the footprint when it’s not in use, you do have a couple of options open to you.

    If you need a folding treadmill desk then the ProForm Thinline collection would be your best choice, with a SpaceSaver® design that folds the treadmill vertically, creating a much more compact footprint.

    NordicTrack offer a similar design where you can fold the treadmill behind the desk and continue your work from a seated position, but it’s a slightly more complex process.

    Unfortunately none of the LifeSpan Fitness treadmill desks feature a folding design, which is the same as for iMovR, Exerpeutic, and Rebel Desk.

  • 10. Weight capacity

    Although this isn’t something that varies a great deal, it’s still useful to know the strength behind each under-desk treadmill.

    LifeSpan Fitness operate a scale in relation to their treadmill bases, with the TR800 supporting up to 300 lbs, TR1200 up to 350 lb, and TR5000 up to 400 lbs. This is the highest weight capacity we’ve seen on any treadmill, and is also offered by the iMovR ThermoTread GT office treadmill base.

    In comparison, NordicTrack can support up to 350 lbs, ProForm Thinline treadmills and the Exerpeutic 2000 have a 300 lb capacity, and the Rebel 1000 has the lowest we’ve seen, with a 250 lb limit.

    Weight capacity is less about price and more about the company that makes the treadmill, and isn’t necessarily a fair reflection of the overall build quality. How much weight capacity is required is very much dependent on who will be using the treadmill, but 300-350 lbs is considered average, with 400 lbs being top-of-the-line.

What’s the best treadmill desk for your budget?

If you’re buying a new elliptical trainer, your options range from the very basic entry-level models of around $300, through to the top-of-the-line full commercial machines that can cost over $12,000.

The price of a treadmill desk isn’t as wide ranging, and you can usually buy a top-of-the-line treadmill and workstation combination for under $2000.

If you already have a suitable standing desk, then under-desk treadmills can be even more affordable, with advanced designs like the TR5000-DT3 available for less than $1500 on the LifeSpan website at time of writing.

But how do you know if the treadmill desk you’re buying has all the features you need, and can you be sure that you’re getting the best deal?

This is the section of the guide where we run through our top recommendations at each price range, and provide you with the sites where we’ve found them at the lowest price.

Best treadmill desk under $1000 – LifeSpan TR1200-DT3

LifeSpan TR1200-DT3 Under-Desk Treadmill

Review rating: 4 star review rating
After LifeSpan discontinued the TR800-DT5 it’s become much more difficult to find a treadmill desk combination under $1000.

ProForm’s Thinline collection usually starts at around $1500, while the lowest we’ve seen the TR1200-DT5 listed is closer to $1300 (on Amazon and the LifeSpan website).

The NordicTrack Treadmill Desk is usually your only option, which we’ve seen listed for between $900 and $1000, depending on where you shop. The only problem is we’re yet to find a customer review with a rating higher than 3 out of 5 stars.

With that in mind we started looking at under-desk treadmills from iMovR, LifeSpan, and Rebel Desk. But although the Rebel 1000 is one of the most affordable, its feature list wasn’t particularly impressive when compared with the LifeSpan TR1200-DT3.

Unfortunately we couldn’t find the iMovR ThermoTread GT for less than $1500 (on Amazon and their own website), which is why we chose the TR1200-DT3 under-desk treadmill as the best option under $1000.

  • Bluetooth data sync: Yes
  • Tread Belt: 20″W x 50″L
  • Cushioning: 6 compression shocks
  • Height range: 0″
  • Height adjustment: No desk
  • Speed: 0.4 – 4.0 mph
  • Weight capacity: 350 lbs
  • Motor: 2.25 HP
  • Roller: 2.5″
  • Step-up height: 4.6″

The lowest price we’ve found for an under-desk treadmill with a high level of build quality is around $700 (Rebel 1000). But this is the same price as for the LifeSpan TR800-DT3, where you can enjoy a more powerful motor, higher belt speed, higher weight capacity, and a longer warranty.

Taking this into account, it’s proven difficult to find a height adjustable desk and workstation for under $300. This is why if you’re looking for an under-desk treadmill and height adjustable desk combination, we recommend setting a budget of at least $1300.

Read the full reviewCheck price

Best treadmill desk under $1500 – LifeSpan TR1200-DT5

LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 Treadmill Desk

Review rating: 5 star review rating
Perhaps not surprisingly the LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 is our top choice of treadmill desk under $1500, based on its market-leading combination of features and affordability.

Our choice was based on finding the best treadmill and workstation combination in this price range, but if you’re looking for an under-desk treadmill at a similar price, we would recommend the TR5000-DT3. Just bear in mind that it’s usually around $500 more than the TR1200 treadmill base, and in our opinion only really worth the money if you need the heavy-duty continuous run time (10 hours).

At the time of writing this guide, the TR1200-DT7 is also priced just under $1500, but unless you need to change the desk height on a regular basis (family environments), we would struggle to justify spending the extra money.

The 4 mph belt speed is enough to support a comfortable walking pace without being so fast that it distracts you from your work. Although the desk height requires manual adjustment, the 16 different height settings cater perfectly for users from 4’10” to 6’8″.

  • Bluetooth data sync: Yes
  • Tread Belt: 20″W x 50″L
  • Cushioning: 6 compression shocks
  • Height range: 41″ – 55″
  • Height adjustment: Manual
  • Speed: 0.4 – 4.0 mph
  • Weight capacity: 350 lbs
  • Motor: 2.25 HP
  • Roller: 2.5″
  • Step-up height: 4.6″

Because LifeSpan Fitness sell their treadmill desks through Amazon as well as their own website, you’ll often find the prices are exactly the same. The most significant benefit of shopping with Amazon is that they offer a wider range of professional home assembly services, which often work out cheaper than the $199 White Glove service from LifeSpan.

If you want to find out more about the design features, warranty, desktop options, and workout data sync, it’s worth taking a look at our full review. Alternatively you can use the link below to find the best prices on Amazon.

Read the full reviewCheck price

Best treadmill desk under $2000 – LifeSpan TR5000-DT5

LifeSpan TR5000-DT5 Treadmill Desk

Review rating: 5 star review rating
The TR5000-DT5 is currently the best under-desk treadmill and workstation combination available under $2000, with a continuous run time that’s 4 hours longer than the TR1200 version.

The treadmill deck has also been upgraded to support a higher weight capacity, while still maintaining a low 4.6″ step-up height and housing LifeSpan’s 6 compression shock suspension system.

As with the TR1200 version, the TR5000-DT5 gives you two options for the desktop size; 38″W x 29″L or 48″W x 29″L. This extra width challenges height-adjustable standing desks from companies like VariDesk, whose own Pro 48 design has a smaller desktop surface of 48″W x 26.75″L.

  • Bluetooth data sync: Yes
  • Tread Belt: 20″W x 50″L
  • Cushioning: 6 compression shocks
  • Height range: 41″ – 55″
  • Height adjustment: Manual
  • Speed: 0.4 – 4.0 mph
  • Weight capacity: 400 lbs
  • Motor: 3 HP
  • Roller: 2.5″
  • Step-up height: 4.6″

When making our decision for the best treadmill desk at this price range, value for money was a major factor. When you consider the price of the VariDesk mentioned above is usually $500, plus the cost of the desk it sits upon, plus the cost of an under-desk treadmill, you’re not going to beat the $1,799 list price of the TR5000-DT5.

We also didn’t choose the TR5000-DT7, even though at time of writing it’s listed at under $2000. That’s purely because we feel the electric desk height adjustment isn’t a feature you’ll get enough use out of if only one person uses the desk. If it’s a multi-user environment, then we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the TR5000-DT7.

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