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Treadmill Desk Fights the Cubicle 15

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From Reuters:

Whether your office is in the business district or on the dining room table, sitting immobile for hours in front of a computer screen is at odds with the fit body.

So fitness experts and entrepreneurs are thinking outside the box to transform the cubicle from sedentary prison to multitasking work and workout space.

"We've made Americans fat by putting them in cubicles," said Steve Bordley, CEO of TrekDesk.

So, Bordley "developed TrekDesk after a leg injury in 2008 crimped his active lifestyle.

With obesity rates soaring and Google (GOOG) searches for phrases like “get fit easy,” “get fit without working out” and, most importantly, “get fit at work” each returning somewhere between two and three hundred million hits, it’s no wonder that a host of products have emerged offering easy exercise at the office. TrekDesk promises consumers that there will be “no sweat, motivation or extra time required.”

Basically, the TrekDesk is a work desk that’s been modified to fit around a treadmill. The treadmill, however, is not included. Workers can then walk at a light pace—a pace that their website goes to great pains to ensure will not cause anyone to sweat—all day.

It falls somewhere in the middle, price-wise, of a surprisingly deep pool of in-office exercise equipment. On the more expensive end is the Walkstation, which is pretty similar to the TrekDesk. Cheaper products include Fit Desk—bike, not treadmill—and rubber exercise balls.

It is difficult to argue with the idea that walking all day instead of sitting has positive health benefits and TrekDesk’s website makes a huge number of health claims. These include weight loss of fifty to seventy pounds in a year, stress reduction, a 50% decrease in diabetes risk, and a similar reduction in cancer risk. And remember, all this with “no sweat, motivation or extra time required.” Sounds like a lazy man’s dream.

Although the TrekDesk has gotten a decent amount of media attention and positive customer reviews, it’s difficult to find data on adoption rates among companies. That being said, there does seem to be a genuine interest in new ways to stay fit in a cubicle.
Meanwhile, for anyone struggling to keep their New Year’s resolutions in week four of 2012 whose office hasn’t adopted exercise desks, here are ten products that help keep people fit at work.
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.