FitDesks give students a two-for-one advantage

 Oakland University students try out the school’s new FitDesks.

Oakland University students try out the school’s new FitDesks.

Students at Oakland University in Rochester, MI, can now work out while doing homework, thanks to the addition of desks that double as exercise bikes at the university’s Kresge Library. Students can choose the exercise function to read, study or use their laptop computers on a platform mounted on the bike’s handlebars.

Stephen P. Weiter, dean of Oakland University Libraries, says staff decided to experiment with FitDesks after reading about their success at other libraries across the country.

OU is one of the first academic institutions in Michigan to offer the desks as a study and exercise platform in a library. According to Weiter, the goal of the experiment is to offer multiple types of seating and a diverse study environment to meet student needs for studying as well as for health and well-being.

According to, South Carolina’s Clemson University —  an early adopter of FitDesks — observed that students who used the bikes showed improved sleep patterns. also indicates that other modern desks, such as standing desks or treadmill desks, have the same positive health effects.

OU students have been testing the FitDesks since January. 

“We’re excited about the potential here, and hope students will see this as a valuable addition to the library,” Weiter says.