Best Under-Desk Treadmills 2024 – Forbes Vetted

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Whenever we think of fitness equipment, full-size treadmills, ellipticals and rowing machines come to mind,…

Whenever we think of fitness equipment, full-size treadmills, ellipticals and rowing machines come to mind, but a growing segment of smaller machines should also be on your radar. The best under-desk treadmills and walking pads, for example, fit under a standing desk or in a corner of the office to boost your physical activity and work performance. The WalkingPad P1 Folding Treadmill, our top pick, features a wide walking platform and a top speed of 3.75mph to promote movement when you might otherwise be seated for hours.

Below, you’ll find six of our fitness and gear experts’ favorite under-desk treadmills and walking pads, including more details on our pick for the best walking pad overall. We know that fitness equipment can be a big investment, so we’ve shared our decades of experience working up a sweat to help you as you shop. Consider consulting our informational guide (found below) that details what to look for in a walking pad, and what sets it apart from a traditional treadmill or a treadmill made for walking. And if you’re looking to snag an under-desk treadmill for less, take a look at our guide on the best walking pad deals.

  • Best Walking Pad Overall: WalkingPad P1 Folding Treadmill
  • Best Under-Desk Treadmill Overall: Egofit Pro M1 Treadmill
  • Best Compact Under-Desk Treadmill: InMovement Unsit Treadmill
  • Best Value Under-Desk Treadmill: Sunny Health & Fitness Walkstation Slim Treadmill
  • Best 2-In-1 Under-Desk Treadmill: Goplus 2-in-1 Folding Treadmill
  • Best Portable Walking Pad: Lifepro PacerMini Walking Pad

Dimensions: 56.3 x 21.5 x 5 inches (unfolded), 32.5 x 21.5 x 5 inches (folded) | Walk surface: 47.2 x 16.5 inches | Weight: 62 pounds | Speed: 0.5 to 3.75 mph | Max load: 220 pounds

The WalkingPad P1 looks and functions like many other under-desk treadmills on this list, but it earns our top spot for its space-saving design that folds in half—a feature you’ll grow fond of in a studio apartment or small office space. And yet, the pad’s ability to collapse doesn’t hinder its performance—with a top belt speed of 3.75 mph, it still promotes a brisk walking pace that allows you to work up a sweat. The platform is also big enough to ensure you won’t worry about falling off when you’re in a meeting.

Of course, this is technically a walking pad instead of a treadmill, which means it lacks the ability to incline, but because incline isn’t a top priority while you’re working, it doesn’t deduct any points in our eyes. And because it weighs only 62 pounds and features a small set of wheels in the front, moving it from one space to the next requires little effort.

What our experts say: “While the P1 only supports up to 220 pounds, it’s difficult to overstate just how practical it is,” says gear editor Cam Vigliotta, who holds a degree in kinesiology. “The pad’s ability to fold in half makes it so incredibly useful whether you’re working from home and storing it in a closet or leaving it under your desk at the office. And with a top speed of 3.75 mph, it’s one of the faster models on this list, but it’s still reasonably priced at around $400.”

Pros:

  • Folding design saves space
  • Large walking surface promotes a confident stride
  • 62-pound net weight boosts portability
  • Remote control features an easy-to-read display

Cons:

  • Folding belt may influence long-term reliability

Egofit Pro M1 Treadmill

Dimensions: 38.4 x 21.9 x 6.9 inches | Walk surface: 34.25 ×16.54 inches | Weight: 48.5 pounds | Speed: 0.6 to 3.1 mph | Max load: 220 pounds

The small and lightweight Pro M1 is the latest under-desk treadmill from Egofit. Built on a fixed 5% incline, it helps you burn more calories than you would when walking on a flat surface. An open front end prevents you from kicking a front plate and tripping as you walk, while the integrated display shows your progress.

The motor and walking platform create a moderate 70 decibels of noise on max speed, so it’s not too loud for phone or Zoom calls. The Pro M1 comes fully assembled and ready to use—just take it out of the box and plug it in. Due to its lightweight, compact design, the treadmill is easy to move and at 48.5 pounds, you can even travel with it if there’s room in the trunk. Built-in wheels on the front of the under-desk treadmill make for easy maneuverability around your office or home. 

What our experts say: “It’s rare to see an under-desk treadmill with solid incline capabilities. I like that the Egofit comes already built on a fixed incline, which is great for simulating walking outside or uphill. This means you can get a more effective workout in in a shorter period of time—ideal for those looking to get the most out of your under-desk treadmill,” says CPT Katie Simpson.

Pros:

  • Compact footprint saves space
  • Lightweight design makes it easy to move
  • Fixed incline adds another level of intensity to your walks

Cons:

  • Smaller max load
  • Some users might not want a fixed incline

MOST POPULAR

Dimensions: 28.5 x 63 x 7.25 inches | Walk surface: 20 x 50 inches | Weight: 115 pounds | Speed: 0.4 to 4.0 mph | Max load: 350 pounds

The LifeSpan TR1200 under-desk treadmill couples a long and wide belt with a low maximum speed to enable you to work comfortably while walking. Its small, portable console sits discreetly on your desk to display your progress (including steps, time, distance, calories burned and speed), and features two large buttons to quickly adjust the treadmill settings. Overall, the machine is quiet yet powerful with impact-absorbing shocks that dampen footstep noise and a built-in safety system that detect when you’re not on the belt. The biggest downside (and why it’s an honorable mention instead of a featured pick): the LifeSpan TR1200 is frequently out of stock, making it difficult to get your hands on.

What our experts say: “Although this option from LifeSpan is pricey, it’s a smart investment if you plan on using an under-desk treadmill on a daily basis,” says Simpson. “The 350-pound weight is a good sign that this treadmill can withstand more wear and tear than most other options on the market, plus it can reach speeds up to 4 mph, which is great for those looking to up their intensity.”

Pros:

  • Quiet operation reduces unwanted noise
  • Sturdy platform pairs with a powerful motor
  • Wide walking surface makes it easy to work and step
  • Large max load capacity

Cons:

  • Big price tag
  • Heavy design
  • Often out of stock

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Dimensions: 39 x 56 x 8.9 inches | Walk surface: 30 x 40 inches | Weight: 162 pounds | Speed: 0.3 to 2.0 mph | Max load: 400 pounds

The Unsit treadmill from InMovement features a wider, more efficient footprint so you can use the entirety of your desk while walking, and the shorter length doesn’t take up a ton of room in your office. A simple desk-mounted controller lets you turn the belt on or off, or adjust the speed, with one click, while the Unsit smartphone app tracks your stats in terms of both walking and standing to monitor your progress. 

The under-desk treadmill remains smooth and quiet at slow speeds so as not to disturb colleagues or neighbors, nor is it a nuisance when on phone or video calls. The auto stop feature kicks in as soon as you step off for added safety, and while the treadmill is heavy, it features integrated wheels on the front to move it around much like a wheelbarrow.

What our experts say: “While some under-desk treadmills can be bulky or cumbersome to finesse under your desk, the InMovement’s compact design makes set-up a breeze,” says Simpson. “The wider belt and desk-mounted controller also makes for a more intuitive design, so you can speed up or slow down easier. The one downside to this machine is that it only goes up to 2 mph. I typically recommend walking at a speed of at least 2.5 mph for a more effective form of low-impact movement.”

Pros:

  • Compact yet wide footprint promotes usable space
  • Controls on the desk make it easy to change settings
  • Integrated levelers and wheels

Cons:

  • As expensive as a traditional high-end treadmill

Sunny Health & Fitness Walkstation Slim Treadmill

Dimensions: 50 x 21.5 x 6.5 inches | Walk surface: 39 x 14 inches | Weight: 55.1 pounds | Speed: 0.5 to 3.75 mph | Max load: 220 pounds

At $300, the Sunny Health & Fitness Walkstation Slim Treadmill presents itself as an exceptional value for money. The thin, portable design can be stored away almost anywhere, and that includes hiding it beneath a sofa after you finish your work day. A large, built-in digital monitor at the front of the under-desk treadmill lets you keep track of your time, speed, calories burned, steps and distance. Plus, the built in shock absorbers cut down on both noise and the amount of force transferred to your joints.

The under-desk treadmill will automatically pause when it senses you have stepped off and if you don’t return within 10 minutes, it will switch into power saving mode. Transportation wheels make for easy portability—simply tilt the design up and roll it to your desired location. 

What our experts say: “Most under-desk treadmills don’t have a built-in monitor. However, most people enjoy the ability to track their progress—the visual component is motivating, which makes the Sunny Health & Fitness a great choice for those who are motivated by seeing their stats,” shares Simpson.

Pros:

  • Slim profile stores away in tight places
  • Lightweight at 55 pounds to boost portability
  • Great value for money

Cons:

  • Loud motor might disturb other colleagues or neighbors

Goplus 2-in-1 Folding Treadmill

Dimensions: 52 x 27 x 5 inches | Walk surface: 16 x 40 inches | Weight: 69.5 pounds | Speed: 0.6 to 7.5 mph | Max load: 265 pounds

The Goplus 2-in-1 Folding Treadmill can be used as both a traditional running treadmill and an under-desk treadmill for walking while you work. The 2.25-horsepower motor is not only powerful, but ultra-quiet so as not to disturb others.

When the riser is folded away, the under-desk treadmill operates at a speed of 0.6 to 2.5 mph, and when the riser is up, it operates at speeds up to 7.5 mph for light running. A phone holder on the riser lets you tune into entertainment while you jog, or you can connect the treadmill’s built-in speakers to your phone to play music during your workout. Detachable armrests add an extra layer of support and the unit comes with a remote control for basic operation. 

What our experts say: “This is a great option for those looking for an under-desk treadmill that doubles as a standard treadmill. While I don’t recommend walking above 3.5 to 4 mph when working for safety reasons, the Goplus is great for those who prefer at-home workouts—simply push the riser up and you can run to your heart’s content,” says Simpson.

Pros:

  • Lightweight design for a dual-purpose treadmill
  • Max load supports various body shapes
  • Excellent value for budget-minded shoppers

Cons:

  • Not incredibly sturdy at high running speeds

Lifepro PacerMini Walking Pad

Dimensions: 32.7 x 25 x 7 inches | Walk surface: 27.6 x 15.7 inches | Weight: 40 pounds | Speed: 0.5 to 3 mph | Max load: 220 pounds

The Lifepro PacerMini walking pad stands out as the ultimate choice for those seeking portability and versatility. Weighing a mere 40 pounds, it offers unparalleled ease of transportation, effortlessly transitioning from one room to another, or accompanying you on your commute from home to office and back again. The lightweight design ensures that you can seamlessly integrate movement into your day, whether you’re working remotely or navigating an irregular work schedule.

Featuring a top speed of 3 mph, it promotes caloric expenditure when you might otherwise be sedentary, and a 7-degree incline adds to the workout intensity.

What our experts say: “Realistically, I don’t expect someone to haul the PacerMini to the office every single day, but its lightweight design does make it more likely that you’ll want to pull it out and actually use it,” notes Vigliotta. “Add to that a reasonable 3-mph max speed and seven-degree incline, and you’re looking at a versatile fitness tool that promotes consistent, daily activity.”

Pros:

  • Lightweight at 40 pounds to boost portability
  • Slight incline adds a challenge to every walking session
  • Included remote makes it easy to control belt speed

Cons:

  • Small walking surface may pose a challenge while working

Why Trust Forbes Vetted

  • Gear editor Cam Vigliotta holds a degree in kinesiology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and regularly reviews the latest fitness equipment. He works alongside senior strategy editor and certified personal trainer (CPT) Katie Simpson to maintain this guide.
  • We have a large library of equipment guides that include our top recommendations for the best options across a variety of machines and home gym essentials. Whether you’re looking for a manual treadmill or one of the best treadmills for running, chances are we have a guide to fit your needs.
  • Dr. James Levine, head of the Mayo Clinic’s Obesity Nutrition Research Center, gave us insight into how walking pads and under-desk treadmills can boost your overall health.
  • Our recommendation are regularly reevaluated to make sure we provide the most accurate advice. This guide was last updated in March 2024 to name a new overall winner.

How We Chose The Best Walking Pads And Under-Desk Treadmills

  • We first determined which exercise equipment brands offer top-rated under-desk treadmills. We considered the likes of LifeSpan, InMovement, Egofit and others mentioned above.
  • To narrow down our list, we tapped Vigliotta and Simpson’s walking pad experience to evaluate which under-desk treadmills offer an ideal balance of size, speed range, power and—most importantly—safety features.
  • Because every fitness goal is unique, we made sure to include options with outstanding customer reviews to suit different needs and budgets.

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What To Consider When Shopping For An Under-Desk Treadmill And Walking Pad

Like all modern fitness equipment, under-desk treadmills often make for a pricey investment, which is why it pays to consider what you’re looking for in a compact walking pad before you pick one up. Below, you’ll find the most important variables to consider, from speed to weight capacity to noise.

Treadmill Size

Perhaps the most important quality that separates under-desk treadmills from their bigger counterparts is size. Because under-desk treadmills need to actually fit under your desk, they should be effective without overcrowding your work station. “Look for a treadmill that has a low profile and can fit under your desk without bumping your knees,” suggests the team at Tom’s Guide. Keep in mind that you may need to move your under-desk treadmill now and again, so it should also be lightweight and portable. Some models can even be folded to save additional space when they’re not in use.

Power

An under-desk treadmill with a bit of oomph will serve you better than one that’s weak. Opt for a motor with sufficient power to accommodate your walking pace and body weight without strain, and look for a treadmill with a quiet motor to minimize disruptions in your workspace.

Speed Range

The speed range of a treadmill should meet your desired walking pace. Most under-desk treadmills have speeds ranging from 0.5 to 3.5 mph, which happens to be a bit slower than full-size treadmills, but it’s fast enough to promote movement without distracting you from the tasks at hand.

Belt Size

A wider and longer belt provides more real estate for comfortable walking. Now that may not sound all that important, but keep in mind that you’ll be walking on your treadmill while working, which isn’t the easiest task in the world. At the end of the day, a bigger belt makes it easier to focus on your work without falling over.

Weight Capacity

The treadmill you choose should be able to support your body weight without compromising stability. Because under-desk treadmills are a bit smaller, they don’t offer the same weight capacities found on full-size treadmills, but options on this list support up to 400 pounds, which should suit most people.

Safety Features

Side rails and emergency stop features bolster the safety factor. While most under-desk treadmills don’t come with side rails (these would take up too much space), many offer an automatic stop function that immediately stops the belt when you step off or lose your balance. Good Housekeeping Institute recommends that you “look for safety features such as an emergency stop button or a safety key that attaches to your clothing.”

Additional Features

From Bluetooth connectivity to built-in desks to programmable walking modes, under-desk treadmills are packed with features. Whether or not you need any bells and whistles is a matter of choice, but it’s worth keeping these attributes in mind as you shop.

Price And Value

Set a budget and compare features to ensure you’re getting the best value for your investment. There’s no sense in overpaying for a treadmill if it blows your budget out of the water, or if you use it once and leave it in your closet for the rest of eternity.


Traditional Treadmills Vs. Under-Desk Treadmills And Walking Pads

Some might wonder what the difference is between an under-desk treadmill and a traditional treadmill. Under-desk and walking pad versions are lighter and traditionally easier to move and store than full-sized treadmills, perfect for tight spaces. Unlike conventional treadmills, there is no eye-level display to monitor speed, heart rate and distance.

In addition, under-desk treadmills and walking pads feature lower max speeds with fewer features but in return, they’re more portable and take up a smaller footprint, making them a solid choice for those working in apartments or home offices. Under-desk treadmills also come in a variety of configurations, some of which feature built-in desks, while other folding treadmill options store under a bed when they’re not in use to save space. Under-desk treadmills and walking pads are generally less expensive than standard treadmills too, though the more feature-rich options can get pricey.

Under-desk treadmills and walking pads are great for walking and slow jogs but not much beyond that. Most under-desk treadmills don’t have safety handles, while some do; handles are usually there for stability when moving at higher speeds. With that being said, the average speed of a treadmill is between 0.5 to 12 mph, while under-desk and walking pad options usually max out at 4 mph.


Is A Walking Pad Worth It?

For those who don’t want to invest in a standard treadmill or don’t have the space to do so, a walking pad or under-desk treadmill is a solid alternative. Dr. Michael Greger, author of How Not to Die, remarks that “under-desk treadmills are a great way to get some exercise without having to leave your desk. They’re a convenient and easy way to get in some extra steps, and they can help to improve your overall health.”

Research also links daily physical activity to imagination—active people come up with more ideas, many of which are better than those presented by relatively sedentary individuals. In his book Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, Dr. John Ratey notes that “under-desk treadmills are a great way to get your body moving and your mind sharp. The act of walking can help to improve blood flow to the brain, which can lead to improved cognitive function.” So if you’ve considered investing in a walking pad or under-desk treadmill before, the science suggests there’s never been a better time to do so.


Can You Lose Weight Using An Under-Desk Treadmill?

Using an under-desk treadmill can contribute to weight loss when combined with a balanced diet and overall healthy lifestyle. By incorporating low-impact movement throughout the day, such as walking while working, you can increase calorie expenditure and promote fat loss. While the amount of weight lost will vary depending on factors like diet, exercise intensity and metabolism, regular use of an under-desk treadmill can support weight management goals. However, it’s worth noting that sustainable weight loss also requires consistency and dedication to long-term healthy habits.


How Long Should You Use A Walking Pad Or Under-Desk Treadmill?

The amount of time you should walk on a walking pad or under-desk treadmill depends on your fitness level, goals and daily schedule. Generally, experts recommend aiming for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity most days of the week, which can be achieved through multiple shorter sessions if necessary. The American Heart Association suggests accumulating at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week to maintain cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. That said, be sure to consult with a healthcare or fitness professional to determine the appropriate duration and intensity of treadmill use based on your individual circumstances.

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