The Best Under-Desk Ellipticals, According To Reviewers

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by Tiana Crump
Originally Published: 
Bustle / Amazon

If you're looking to get a little bit more movement into your workday, consider investing in one of the best under-desk ellipticals. These portable compact exercise machines help counteract extended periods of sitting.

These machines provide a steady cardio workout to improve stamina and blood flow that's also a low-impact workout so it's gentle on your joints. As an added bonus, these compact versions are a lot less expensive and more compact than purchasing a standard elliptical machine.

When you’re shopping for an option to use at work or your home, there are a few factors to consider. The first is desk height. To comfortably be able to pedal under your desk, you’ll need adequate space between your knees and the tabletop so it’s a good idea to measure your desk’s height and check the elliptical’s lowest desk height requirement for a good fit.

You'll also want to decide which reporting features you want. All of these will show you basic stats like time and strides taken. However, some desk elliptical machines come with Bluetooth so that you can sync it with your smartphone or Fitbit for tracking, or you can link it to an app. These smart features usually cost more, so decide if they’re something that’d be useful for you.

To get you started, I've rounded up the best under-desk ellipticals on Amazon. All of these top picks can help you stay more active throughout the day while you’re sitting, and if you decide that cycling is more your speed, I've included a best-selling under-desk cycle as well.


The Best Overall Under-Desk Elliptical

The DeskCycle Ellipse machine is a great all-around option. With compact 24.8-by-14-inch size, you can easily take it to work with you or use it at home, plus it's only 11 inches tall so it'll fit under most desks. Use the adjustable tension dial to choose between eight resistance settings and get that perfect stride going, and stats for things like minutes and revolutions are automatically visible on the display monitor located above the dial. This mini elliptical also features both forward and reverse peddling motions to allow you to target different leg muscles.

What fans say: “Love this! Fits perfectly under my home office desk, and it’s smooth and quiet, perfect for working from home! Really like being able to have the tracker/monitor on the desk also! Highly recommend!!!”


The Best Budget Under-Desk Elliptical

With 4,900 ratings and counting, this Sunny Health & Fitness elliptical peddler is a popular option at an affordable price. At 11 inches tall, it’s designed to be used under most desks. It features a digital meter with a four-function display, and there are eight resistance levels, just like first pick, too. The handle located at the center of the machine makes it easy to carry.

While it does come with floor stabilizers to keep it secure on different floor surfaces, some reviewers report that when used on bare floors, the machine might slide away from you as you pedal. If you have slippery floors, a rubber mat may offer more traction and help to keep the elliptical in place.

What fans say: “This elliptical met all my criteria - reasonably priced, no assembly required, stable/sturdy and quiet. I use it regularly while working and like that it's easy to transport if you change your workspace or to use while watching tv.”


The Best Smart Under-Desk Elliptical

For those who want a smart option that syncs with your phone, the Cubii Pro is it. This mini elliptical is Bluetooth enabled to connect to your iOS or Android smartphone via the Cubii app so you can track your stats, personalize your fitness goals, and even compete with others. It also has the ability to sync to your Fitbit or Apple HealthKit. This under-desk elliptical has a low profile and 9 inches tall so it'll fit neatly under most desks or tables. There are eight resistance level settings.

What fans say: “I work long hours at my desk, so my doctor recommended this as a solution to working out while working. Though I find it hard to type while cycling, I have found that having it right under my desk is a great convenience to carve out time to exercise. I can do a bunch of other tasks while using it and the app keeps me on track to meet my goals. It has been a very positive experience and it is super quiet too.”


Also Great: An Under-Desk Bike With 1,500+ Five-Star Reviews

If cycling is more your thing, the DeskCycle exercise bike is a cult-favorite on Amazon. This under-desk bike is adjustable to 9- or 10-inches tall and can fit under desks as low as 27 inches, according to the manufacturer. It features resistance with eight different tension settings and displays speed, time, distance, and more stats. The display is also removable and can be placed on your desk. There’s also a free online web app that you can use to log your daily activity; however, that's manual and not automatic. But with a 4.6-star rating after more than 2,000 reviews, customers still seem to love it.

What fans say: “This super quiet bike was just what I needed! I can peddle on it while working, reading, watching TV. It’s not distracting at level 3 and below. If I kick it up to 4 or above it’s much more intense and I can actually break a sweat from peddling!”

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