Last updated on July 1st, 2021
Do you want to pedal your way to a healthier lifestyle? An exercise bike is an excellent form of cardio that can help you to build your strength, tone your muscles and stay in shape. They offer a hassle-free alternative to working out at the gym, as they allow users to exercise from the comfort of their own homes.
With so many different exercise bikes available, finding the best one for your requirements can seem like a challenge. It is important to select the bike that will allow you to meet your fitness goals. Below, we have created a guide that informs you of the different features and factors that you will need to look for when buying an exercise bike.
The Type of Exercise Bike
First, you will need to decide on a type of exercise bike. They include an upright bike, a recumbent bike, or a spin bike. The model that you choose will depend on your fitness level, your current health, and what you want to achieve from your workout. When riding an upright exercise bike you can sit straight or lean forward depending on how much you want to challenge your muscles.
A spin bike is one of the most popular models that is often found in gyms. This type of bike is designed with flywheels and will work your whole body. When riding a recumbent bike, you will be seated in a reclined position with your feet ahead of you. As mentioned, the type that you choose will depend on your fitness aspirations and the room that you have available to store your exercise bike.
The Basic Features
Some exercise bikes will be equipped with more advanced features than others, however, they should all feature some basic features. For example, the majority will have a range of resistance levels, along with a padded seat that will allow you to sit comfortably for a prolonged period of time.
Ideally, you should also be able to track the resistance and keep up with the speed that you are traveling at, the time that you have been working out for, and the distance that you have covered. Many will also allow you to see how many calories you have burnt and may even feature a heart rate monitor. Those that are more advanced are likely to be more intuitive and will include built-in workout programs.
The space that you have available will influence the size of the exercise that you choose. If you live in a small apartment with a restricted amount of free space, you are going to struggle to store a big and bulky bike. Spin bikes are one of the most compact exercise bikes available, making them an ideal choice for those who do not have the space to dedicate to storing large workout equipment.
Another ideal option for those who are short on space is a foldable exercise bike. As implied these types of bikes can be folded away in between uses and will easily fit inside a cupboard or small space. They also tend to be cheaper too making them an excellent choice for those who are on a budget.
Comfort Of The Saddle
Ideally, you should look for an exercise bike that incorporates a comfortable saddle. Most bikes will have a ‘performance’ saddle or a ‘plush’ saddle. The former is long and narrow, whilst the latter is wider with more padding.
If you are likely to be using your exercise bike for a lengthy workout session you want it to be comfortable to ride, otherwise it is going to cause your muscles to tire sooner. Though some people may find a wider seat comfier, a thinner seat isn’t as obtrusive.
The Weight and Weight Capacity
A stable exercise bike is crucial, you don’t want it to move constantly when you are attempting to ride it. To gauge how stable the bike is going to be, you will need to see how much it weighs. A heavier bike is going to remain much more stable than a lightweight bike, although it will be more difficult to transport.
You will also need to look at the weight capacity of the bike. This will typically be stated in the product specifications. It is important to make sure that the bike is used correctly in regards to its maximum weight capacity, otherwise, the safety of the user may be in jeopardy.
Most exercise bikes, especially those that are more advanced will incorporate a digital display. This will allow you to keep up with your stats as you ride the bike. Some will even allow you to watch and follow along with pre-programmed workouts as you exercise, it is more than likely that a bike with these settings will boast Wi-Fi connectivity.
Of course, you should expect to spend a little more on a bike that comes with pre-recorded workout programs and Wi-Fi.
Many brands are renowned for the quality and reliability of the workout equipment that they manufacture. For this reason, you may choose to purchase an exercise bike from a more well-known popular brand.
When browsing the market for an exercise bike, it is important to determine how much you are willing to spend. An exercise bike is a pretty hefty expense and you will often find that the quality and functionality are reflected in the cost.
This isn’t to say that there aren’t good quality, budget-friendly bikes available because there most certainly are but you should expect them to be more basic and lacking in features in comparison to high-end models. Some bikes can cost as little as $160 and others can cost as much as $2,250.
If you don’t feel as though the advanced features of a pricier bike are going to benefit you, you will likely find a cheaper, more basic model sufficient for your needs. Having an awareness of your budget will ensure that you select the best exercise bike for you.