When it comes to deciding on an exercise bike, it’s a lot more complex than simply picking one out at random at the store and then hopping on.
Exercise bikes range wildly in pricing, as well as in features. Do you want an exercise bike that’s budget-friendly, or do you care more about fancy bells and whistles? Do you need an exercise bike that will go easy on your knees or one that will fit in a small apartment? Check out the 12 best exercise bikes for a variety of shoppers.
What to Look for in an Exercise Bike
But before you get into individual exercise bikes for your consideration, you likely want to keep in mind a few things that will impact your experience after your purchase.
No matter your plans for the exercise bike or the results you want to get out of using it, you’ll want to consider:
- The exercise bike’s weight
- The amount of noise the exercise bike makes
- The way the exercise bike is built
The weight of the bike impacts not only the ease of getting it to your house and moving it around (some users, for example, want a bike they can pull out into the middle of the living room and ride while watching television, which just isn’t possible if the bike is too heavy for you to move on your own), but it will also impact the bike’s stability. Heavy bikes are more stable.
Exercise bikes can be noisy. If you’re worried about noise and the likelihood of your exercise annoying your partner or others in your house, then you might want to consider only bikes without fans, as exercise bikes with fans are on the noisier side.
Additionally, how the bike is built will impact not only your ride but also your safety. A bigger heavier flywheel, for example, takes more force to spin. Depending on your riding preferences, you may similarly prefer a lighter or heavier flywheel.
Beyond this, an exposed flywheel or chain on an exercise bike can pose a safety risk to young children with wandering fingers; if you have a small child in the house, you’ll want to make sure that’s covered.
Best Value Exercise Bikes for the Price
If you’re looking to get the best value from an exercise bike for the price, then you’ll want to consider one of these highly touted options.
The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike has received top ratings from health publications around the world, as it offers a lot of good perks for less than $150. The exercise bike can support up to 300 pounds of weight (which is 75 pounds more than most bikes of this size) and the bike can be folded, for compact storage. However, do keep in mind that this exercise bike comes with a pretty bare-minimum screen and few tech features.
If you’re wanting an exercise bike similar to what you might find in a spin class, then the Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Exercise Stationary Bike could fit your needs. While still on the more basic side, it features a 22-pound flywheel and ergonomic seating.
Best Exercise Bikes for Small Spaces
Perhaps you’re willing to spend a little bit more on your exercise bike, or you’re not necessarily looking to get the most features for your money. Maybe your primary worry is whether or not an exercise bike will fit in your small space, whether that be a crowded basement in a crowded family home or your first apartment.
If that’s the case, the XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike could be up your alley. The exercise bike is incredibly compact, simple, easy to use and foldable. The frame folds to just 18.1 inches by 18.1 inches of floor space when not in use. While this exercise bike isn’t the most tech-savvy or luxurious, it’s definitely small.
Similarly, both the Marcy Foldable Upright Exercise Bike and the ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike are two of the favorite exercise bikes for small spaces on the market.
They also take up very little floor space but do note that they’re both only suitable for those who want an upright cycling experience.
Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes
If the mere thought of upright cycling gives you back and knee pain, you may want a recumbent exercise bike, which allows you to sit back in a more reclined position, for a workout that targets your legs and core without the same strain.
The Stamina Elite Total Body Recumbent Bike is one of the favorites, but it might give you a little sticker shock when you compare it to some of the earlier bikes on this list. It starts at $660. For that price, though, you enjoy a quiet ride powered by both foot pedals and hand pedals, from a padded, adjustable seat, and the exercise bike takes up a relatively small space compared to some other recumbent bikes.
The Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike is far more budget-friendly and a good value for those who want to try recumbent cycling but aren’t yet sure if they want to commit long term. At just $160, the exercise bike gives you the recumbent cycling experience, though without any fancy perks.
Best Luxury Exercise Bikes
However, if it’s fancy perks you’re looking for, then you can definitely find it (and, no, you don’t have to go to Peloton).
The Commercial S22i Studio Cycle, for example, is almost exactly what you might see in a pricey spin class. The high-end bike, with its 20 percent incline technology, 22-inch interactive HD touchscreen and interactive personal training, is definitely for the serious cyclers only.
The Sole LCB Upright Bike is similar, with loads of fun perks, including an integrated tablet holder, BlueTooth audio speakers, a USB port for charging devices, pre-set fitness programs and 40 levels of resistance.
Best Exercise Bikes for Seniors
If you have special needs as a senior cyclist, then you’ll want to consider a recumbent exercise bike.
While recumbent bikes do support cardiovascular fitness and a full range of motion, as well as both high and low-impact workouts, they simultaneously provide full back support and cause less stress to your joints.
Some of the best exercise bikes for seniors include the Schwinn Recumbent Bike Series, EXERPEUTIC 900XL 300 lbs. Weight Capacity Recumbent Exercise Bike and Nautilus Recumbent Bike Series.
Ready to Purchase Your First Exercise Bike?
If you’re ready to purchase your first exercise bike, there are plenty of options out there. However, the exercise bike you ultimately go with will depend on lots of factors, not limited to your age, budget, free space and exercise goals.
Take the time to explore all your options and pick the best exercise bike for you.
You might also be interested in: 6 Kettlebell Exercises to Improve Posture And Grow A Booty