Do Legal Departments Approve Treadmill Desks?

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Guest blog post by Jared Stark, attorney at Stark Business Law PLLC.

If you’ve been hoping for a treadmill desk, the good news is that legal departments do approve of getting a treadmill desk. You just need to have the answers to their questions.

You can’t stand the thought of another day in your office chair and are ready for a treadmill desk. You can recite the health benefits in your sleep and you’ve converted your family and friends. There’s just one problem — your employer is a bit cautious about new technology. If your company’s legal department is still worried about the “danger” of fax machines, how can you convince them that treadmill desks are safe and beneficial?

Here is everything you need to know to convince your company’s legal department to sign off on your treadmill desk.

Healthy employees are more productive. Everyone loves compelling statistics. The CDC has studied this workplace wellness extensively and concluded that “workplace health programs can increase productivity.” The CDC found that, on average, employees considered to be overweight missed several more days of work each year when compared to employees considered to be normal weight. For the business-minded legal departments, you can tell them that Forbes Magazine agrees.

The Rebel Treadmill 1000 moves at a safe speed. “But won’t you just fly off when you get distracted?” You’ve probably heard this one a few times. When my friends see my Rebel Desk, their first thought is always “that’s so cool!” Sometimes, the follow-up question involves some hypothetical where I fly off the treadmill. They usually don’t realize that the Rebel Treadmill 1000 has an adjustable speed from 0.5 to 2 miles per hour. In other words, it’s a great way to get moving, but your legal department shouldn’t worry about employees slingshot-ing across the office.

 There have been no known liability lawsuits. Let’s get down to brass tacks. Legal departments are worried about liability more than anything. In-house lawyers have seen lawsuits for just about everything, so it’s not hard to imagine why they worry. However, as far as I can tell, there haven’t been any liability lawsuits filed against credible treadmill desk companies. In fact, a Rebel Desk may be a great alternative for an employee already suffering with an ailment from sitting and typing all day. Let the company know that the industry has a great liability track record.

If the pesky company lawyers still won’t budge, you might want to suggest signing a waiver. So you’ve shared the studies, the specs, and the liability facts with your company’s legal department and they’re still concerned. One thing that gets some lawyers comfortable is a liability waiver. If they still won’t budge, you might want to volunteer that you sign a waiver holding the company harmless for your use of a treadmill desk at work.

Getting Rebel Desks in your office could improve productivity and morale. Hopefully these tips can help you convey that message to your company. Happy walking!

Kathleen Hale


Kathleen is a leading voice in the active-working field. She writes, speaks and teaches about how using treadmill desks and adjustable-height desks can change lives. She also is the founder of Chair Free Project, a resource to help people live better by using chairs less. Reach out (@kathleenhale_) and let Kathleen know what posts you would like to see on the Rebel Desk blog!

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