Where’s the Best Place to Put a Treadmill Desk in your Office?
Placement of an under-desk treadmill at the workplace can be tricky in some smaller offices so take the time to really think it through before assembling your workstation. Like any desk where you’re going to have a computer you don’t want it opposite a window where the sun will create unbearable glare across the display or directly in front of the window where the sun will create unbearable glare across your eyeballs.
You also want to have access to a power outlet that has sufficient amperage rating to handle your treadmill and anything else you need to have plugged into it. It’s generally a good idea not to plug anything else but the treadmill and perhaps an electrically-adjustable desk into the same outlet – not your computer, monitor or fan – to avoid blowing a circuit breaker. Good office treadmills are designed to come to a halt slowly when you hit the stop button. Be wary of the fact that when the treadmill suddenly has its juice cut off it will come to a very abrupt stop without warning; not a fun experience even at walking speeds.
If your only option is to place the treadmill desk against a wall then your next decision on placement is an easy one. If, however, you have the option of placing the desk between you and where your visitors usually take a seat then you have to consider a few additional things. For example, you may want to mount your monitor stand on the corner of your desk rather than in the center so you can push the monitor all the way aside when you have guests seated opposite you. In this configuration you will also want to think about whether you will drop your desktop down and sit in a chair or have a standing meeting with your colleagues.
Remember that you’ll be standing 4 to 7 inches higher off the ground than your colleagues are used to. If you’re already a taller individual you may find some coworkers are a little intimidated to approach you while you’re walking. If you’re a shorter statured individual you may really like being a half-foot taller than usual.
If you work in an office with other people who tend to walk by frequently to chat or ask a quick question then be prepared to develop some protocols with them about how you would like this to go when you’re on the hoof. You may find no difference at all but some users find they need to triage all interruptions and determine first whether they are going to be a) quick to deal with, so keep walking, b) take a minute or two to deal with, so straddle the treadmill by standing on the “landing strips” with the motor still running, or c) take longer than a couple of minutes to deal with, so pause the treadmill and step off. See our complete guide to treadmill desk etiquette.
If you want to get a personal feel for using a treadmill to make sure it will work for you, you should read our article on guidance to see how you can test one out for yourself.