It can’t hurt to burn some calories while sitting at your desk.
Actually it can help you quite a lot.
Studies show that doing some pedalling at your desk can help you lose weight, increase metabolism & circulation.
So if you’re stuck at your desk and are concerned about inactivity, an under desk bike might be for you.
We decided to take an in depth look at the popular DeskCycle 2 model.
DeskCycle-2 Under Desk Exercise Bike
- Quiet pedal motion
- Anchoring strap
- Extra wide front leg
- 8 resistance levels
- Convenient for smaller desks
The DeskCycle-2 will be a helpful tool for people that wish to improve their circulation and add some movement to their workflow.
We wouldn’t say it replaces a trip to the gym, but it does come with many health benefits.
Will it be a great match for you? Let’s find out:
Smooth & quiet for the office
You won’t notice this feature while using the bike (unless you’ve suffered noisy under desk bikes), but the lack of sound is actually a very good thing. This is especially true if you’re sharing an office, or you work in an open office.
Pedal away without disturbing any of your co-workers! You will however attract attention. Some might argue that’s a good thing. We say it’s good to set a healthy example.
Multiple resistance levels
We really appreciated the wide range of resistance levels that the DeskCycle-2 offers. You can start at the lowest setting and gradually increase the level of resistance as you feel your leg muscles strengthening.
The manufacturer recommends using the third level of resistance for undisturbed work. They consider it a low cardio zone that still helps with circulation bringing more oxygen to your brain.
One of the major upgrades of the DeskCycle-2 is the ability to adjust the level of height. This design upgrade came as an answer to some user complaints that they were hitting the desk with their knees while pedaling.
The other great addition to the new model is the adjustable Velcro straps that will work with any foot size. Yet another design upside that comes after listening what customers say.
Most of the pedals on the market are not adjustable presenting a problem for people with narrow feet because their feet keep slipping down. Also people with wider feet will benefit from the Velcro straps as they also have a problem with rigid pedal straps.
One thing that’s not adjustable is the position of the pedals. They’ve been made heavy on purpose to be stable while you slip your feet in. It is so not fun trying to chase the pedal underneath your desk every time you wish to use the bike.
Full day display
We really liked the larger display on the DeskCycle-2 model. It counts up to 16 hours of usage, but we doubt anyone would be pedaling that much. The average person uses the bike for no more than 4 hours a day.
You can choose to place the display on top of the bike, or use the display stand to position it on your desk for easier viewing. It also looks really cool on your desk.
Free exercise tracking app
The DeskCycle-2 comes with its own tracking app called Fitbit. It helps you keep track of your daily activities, and it shows your progress over time.
This is where we recognize the true value of the product, simple details that can mean a lot to keep you motivated and healthy.
Exercise suggestions while working
One of the biggest health risks connected with sitting is a lack of calorie burning. The metabolic syndrome 1 a.k.a. the sitting disease happens because we simply do not move while working at our desk.
Some people have opted for standing desks which is a great alternative. Well, the makers of the DeskCycle-2 claim their product is 3 to 5 times more effective than a standing desk due to the energy expenditure it provides.
According to them, standing at your desk raises your energy expenditure by 18% while using the DeskCycle-2 on resistance #3 increases your energy spending by 100%.
This study was conducted at the University of Colorado measuring the subject’s movement at a slow pedal speed of 1 revolution per second.
You will definitely be able to work up a sweat on your DeskCycle-2 if you go for the higher resistance levels.
But before you begin strengthening that core, and burning calories here’s some advice that might prove useful:
- Begin with resistance #4 for light workout;
- Use a higher resistance/lower pace routine if you wish to continue burning calories after your exercise
- Always keep a water bottle on your desk, since you’re spending calories you need to stay hydrated.
Is the Desk Cycle good for weight loss?
According to a study that was published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, the DeskCycle does help you burn 500 calories a week.
The study involved office workers. We’re talking about desk-bound people that were overweight; mostly due to the fact that they are tied to a chair all day.
They gave the DeskCycle-2 a spin for 16 weeks and reported back with the results:
- Loss of weight and total fat mass
- Decrease in waist size
The office workers used their under desk bike for 50 minutes a day on average, which doesn’t sound like an impossible task. They reported using it around 18 times a day, with each session averaging 4.5 minutes.
Apparently for good heart health you need to use it in many short sessions instead of one long cyle.
An important thing to note: Do not expect huge amounts of weight loss fast, the DeskCycle will help you achieve a slow and steady weight loss.
What are the dimensions?
- Pedal Top Height – 9 inches
- Extra wide front leg for stability – 20 inches
- Length – 24 inches
Can it fit under my desk?
You can use the DeskCycle-2 with a smaller sized desk. The manufacturer states it should fit perfectly under a 27 inch-desk, although some users mentioned your desk would need to be at least 30.5’’ tall, and this set up should be comfortable for people up to 5’9’’ tall.
DeskCycle Vs DeskCycle 2- what’s the difference?
Just like we mentioned earlier, the main addition to the DeskCycle-2 model is height adjustability. The new model can be matched with shorter desks.
The manufacturers recommend 27 inches of desk height, we say 30’’ just to be sure.
If you look closely you might notice the DeskCycle logo has been re-vamped to give it an even better look. Also the LCD display is larger than the previous model.
Other Great Options
If you’re curious to find out who are the main competitors of DeskCycle-2 on the market, we compiled a list of some great alternatives for you:
The Flexispot standing desk exercise bike will allow you to use the best out of both worlds. No need to leave your standing desk for a light cardio exercise. Simply sit down on your Flexispot desk and enjoy the pedaling motion.
The chair is height adjustable and comes without a backrest, just like a real bike would be. This is good for your posture as it keeps you in the upright position, but this can get demanding on your back muscles after 2-3 hours of sitting.
Most people use the Flexispot in combination with standing or a regular office chair, which is why it’s so convenient you get the casters, and you can simply roll it away when not using.
If you’re not a fan of pedaling, and would rather do a stepping motion under your desk, you should give the Cubii pro a try. It provides a low step pattern made to be used while sitting.
This Bluetooth powered seated elliptical works with FiBit and Apple HealthKit applications to give you a customized experience that helps you to move past simple calories counting and step into better posture, stronger core and muscles.
The makers of this product used to be full time office workers that decided to come up with a smart solution to their sedentary problems. It is also recommended for people going through rehabilitation or in need of a light workout at home.
The FitDesk is very similar to the DeskCycle-2 with 2 huge differences:
The lowest pedal height is 9.5 inches raising it half an inch higher that the DeskCycle-2. While this is not a huge difference, you definitely have a lot more room to wiggle with the DeskCycle.
Also the FitDesk doesn’t come with the helpful Velcro straps on the pedals. The surface of the FitDesk pedal certainly has a grip to it, but we realized that in practice people prefer the convenience of the Velcro strap.
The FitDesk doesn’t connect to any apps.
The MagneTrainer is another interesting item on our list since it’s marketed to be used both with your feet and hands.
The grips have been molded to adjust to your grip and it works perfectly to keep you moving. The only thing to have in mind, this item is 15’’ high, which is almost twice the height of DeskCycle-2 meaning you’ll need a much higher desk. Plan to have at least 36’’ of height on your office desk to be sure.
On the other hand this product was made from high-grade materials and will last you a long time.
We hope you liked our review of the DeskCycle-2 and its closest alternatives. Judging by users experience and overall practicality of the product, we dare say DeskCycle-2 (the improved version) could be one of the best under desk exercise bikes on the market.
And remember, you don’t need to get up from your office chair to keep moving.