The best exercise bikes serve up incredible workouts without taking up as much room as a treadmill or rowing machine. Their low-impact nature means they’re easier on the knees too, and come in particularly handy for getting in a heart-pumping cardio fix when the weather’s grim and grey.
For all these reasons and more, we’ve put together a list of some of the best exercise bikes currently available, to help channel those spin class vibes in your living room. Before we jump into our list though, there are a few things to take into account—we’ve got the full rundown.
What’s the best exercise bike?
A gym-quality bike that’s quiet to ride, has the chops to challenge even experienced spin obsessives and a rotating touchscreen for truly versatile workouts. Expert classes are delivered via NordicTrack’s iFit subscription service (from $180 per year).
Best affordable exercise bike: Schwinn Speedbike IC8
This one invests in what matters—the cycling experience—while saving you money on the the bells and whistles. Just add the iPad you already own and cycle your way through a couple of seasons of The Sopranos.
Having reinvented home fitness, Peloton’s Bike+ brings a touch of luxury to your workouts with automatic resistance adjustments, Apple Watch connectivity and a rotating touchscreen. Its beloved roster of classes and instructors are subscription-dependent as ever ($42 per month).
What are the benefits of exercise bikes?
Exercise bikes get your legs moving and your heart pumping. Use one regularly and you’ll soon notice an improvement in your overall fitness, especially if you go for a high-intensity routine. Throw a sensible diet, upper body and lower body workouts into the mix, and you’ll be losing weight, building muscle and improving your overall fitness in no time.
What kind of console do exercise bikes use?
Many bikes use simple LCD displays for metrics like distance, pace and calories. Pay a little extra and you’ll get a HD touchscreen. Look for Bluetooth or ANT+ connectivity for connecting to other fitness trackers and apps.
Are the seat and handlebars adjustable?
Even the most basic home bikes have adjustable seats and handlebars for comfortable pedaling during your indoor cycling sessions.
Is a treadmill or exercise bike better?
Both treadmills and exercise bikes offer a great cardio workout and make for excellent home gym equipment additions. Treadmills generally cost more and take up more space, and have more impact on your joints. If you’re looking for a lower impact form of cardio, a bike might be a better choice in the long run. Both are great though—it’s just personal preference.
What extras should I look out for?
Built-in bottle holders for water bottles are a godsend for grueling HIIT sessions. Some bikes have tablet holders for binging Netflix. Others have wheels that make them easy to move, while high-end foldable models are perfect for apartments and other small spaces.
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