If you are looking to shift excess pounds from the comfort of your own home, an exercise bike is a great choice. This workout staple has been a favourite for many years, offering an accessible and affordable way for users to set pulses raising and burn calories. Why are they so popular? Exercise bikes provide the user with an easy way to undertake cardio workouts, yielding noticeable results no matter what fitness level you’re currently at.
Most models are small enough that they can be kept inside without becoming an eyesore or unwanted obstacle in your home. Working out on an exercise bike is also a good option for those suffering from existing ailments or injuries, with the low impact nature of the workout unlikely to exacerbate them.
Keen to start shifting weight and building your fitness levels? Our go-to guide for Best Exercise Bike has everything you need to know about exercise bikes, helping you find the right model for your requirement.
Main Types of Exercise Bike
There are actually several common types of exercise bike you’re likely to encounter when browsing the market. The first of these, and probably the most recognisable, is the upright exercise bike. They are constructed to resemble and replicate the function of a typical outdoor bicycle. Once mounted, the rider is placed in an upright and slightly raised position, with the body tilted forward slightly. The key difference here however is that the handlebars are placed far higher than a typical bike. The reason for this is that the upright position can be maintained more comfortably for longer sessions, preventing the body from falling into a curved position.
The flywheel element of an upright exercise bike also means that, when you wish to stop, you can do so without having to remove your feet from the pedal. Again, this makes them a more comfortable and accessible choice for those with lower overall fitness levels that they’re looking to build on and develop. In most cases, upright bike models will include integrated computer elements. The functionality of such elements will vary wildly depending on how much you’re willing to spend on an exercise bike.
Common features of these training computers include the ability to set timers for length of workout, adjust the resistance of the bike and more. You can also use these computers to give you an idea of your heart rate while working out, as well as the total amount of calories you are likely to have burned while working out. Upright exercise bikes are definitely worth considering if you are seeking a user-friendly workout option that doesn’t skimp on comfort. Admittedly, they don’t generally allow for more strenuous workouts, but you can still push yourself to moderately intense levels with one.
You will notice the differences between recumbent exercise bikes and other models immediately. The key difference here is that body positioning dispenses with a conventional seat. Instead of a normal cycling seat, a recumbent seat is located much lower and includes a backrest. The positioning of the pedals is also different, with them being placed in front of the rider, rather than below. As such, the overall positioning of the body is comparatively relaxed.
There is good reason for this more relaxed design, however. Thanks to the positioning of the seat and pedals, not to mention the inclusion of a backrest, the user can enjoy far lower levels of stress on the body while riding. This makes them a very worthwhile consideration for anyone who struggles from significant back pain and similar ailments.
Even those who don’t suffer from back pain may find recumbent exercise bikes appealing. The reclined position these bikes provide make them more accessible for those struggling to bite the bullet and get stuck in to a rigorous workout. However, they are not just the reserve of the less motivated or those suffering with pain. With the pedals positioned in front of the body, the legs are separated from the core of the body during workouts. As such, they can be effectively used to develop leg strength. When used properly, they excel over upright exercise bikes in this regard.
Indoor Cycling Alternatives
These are the type of exercise bike you are likely to have seen lining the edges of gyms or at a spin class. The standout features of indoor cycling models is that they include an open, weighted flywheel. The function of this is to produce a more accurate momentum akin to conventional cycling that you won’t find with upright exercise models.
Another major difference between these types of exercise bike and upright models is the handlebars. With indoor cycling models, the handlebars are comparably lower in their positioning. The reason for this is that it encourages the user to adopt a lower riding position, more reflective of the type of posture you’d see from a rider of a racing bike.
If you are keen to undertake more rigorous workouts, this lower position will help you achieve your goals. However, this riding position is intensive and can create significant strain on the body, particularly the lower back region. As such, the beginner is best advised to avoid this type of model until they’ve built up their body strength.
Other specific features of indoor cycling models include the dual-sided design of the pedals. Thanks to this design, the rider can firmly attach their feet to the bike, thereby generating more power as they train. What’s more, as the pedals are adjoined to the flywheel itself, the pedals continue to spin, even when the user stops exerting their own force on them. This is ideal for those looking to maintain consistent activity during workouts. Indoor cycling bikes are the go-to choice for more active users and those familiar with high-intensive cycling. Unless you’re accustomed to them, they should be avoided until you’ve developed your strength and ability.
Key Things to Look Out For in an Exercise Bike
No matter what type of model you’re looking to invest in, you’ll wan to pay special attention to a few key features. The first of these is the training console. This is a simple computer that’s integrated into the overall body of the bike, often found between the handlebars. This console screen can be used to set training limits and activate timers to help facilitate your workout, while also offering you displays of important stats like heart rate readings and calories burned.
Resistance is another key area of consideration. Resistance is enforced with the use of friction or magnets worked into the build of the bike, although this later type of resistance is less common than friction varieties. Friction resistance can be easily changed by the use of an adjustable knob. Again, this is often found within easy reach of the handlebars.
Product Reviews of Best Exercise Bike in UK for 2020
Feeling inspired to put your workout plans into overdrive? Now you know what to look for in a good exercise bike, it’s time to invest in one. We’ve put together a go-to list of great options you can currently find available on the market. In our line-up of must-have models for best exercise bike, you will find options from some of the leading manufacturers in the business, with options to accommodate every budget.
This entry on our list falls into the category of cycling exercise bikes that should tick all the boxes for those looking to undertake more vigorous workouts. Great for those looking to take their cardio training up a notch, this bike boasts 12 kilogram flywheel as standard, while also allowing for silent running. If you’re worried about disturbing neighbours or partners while they sleep, this is a great choice.
There is plenty of useful tech incorporated into the design of this model, including pulse sensors, a heart rate monitor, as well as an LCD computer to aid your workouts. A super soft seat is on hand to ensure you can push yourself to the limit for longer, while a smartphone stand between the handlebars means you can keep up with media as you train.
Magnetic resistance bikes aren’t all that common, but here’s one that’s well worth a look. You’ve eight different levels of magnetic resistance to work with here, giving you plenty of variety to vigorous workouts. There is plenty of integrated technology to aid your training as well, with an LCD monitor displaying everything from time elapsed, speed statistics, distance travelled, calories burned and much more.
A heart rate monitor is integrated into the handrails, allowing you to keep a close eye on your vitals as you go. What’s more, this bike model can be readily adjusted to best suit you. You can rotate the handlebars by 360 degrees, while the seat can be adjusted to seven different positions.
The JLL IC300 PRO is a quality choice of exercise bike that should tick all the right boxes for those looking for gym-level performance from the comfort of their own home. Quiet and smooth cycling is assured thanks to adjustable magnetic resistance, with a direct belt driven flywheel on hand to ensure consistent and reliable motion. This exercise bike also allows for plenty of personalisation and adjustment, with a 3-piece crank as standard. You will also find no less than six handlebar level adjustments to pick from, along with ten vertical seat adjustment levels.
This exercise bike also provides you with a large LCD monitor to keep on top of your essential stats, with seven key functions provided for. The impressive monitor gives you control of and updates on time elapsed, speed attained and distance travelled. You will also find details of pulse, RPM, calories burned and more. Despite the comprehensive exercise features offered by this bike, it is surprisingly compact, making it an ideal choice for those looking to work out from smaller spaces in the home.
This ANCHEER exercise bike is another first-rate choice for those looking for premium features. The incredibly stable design of this bike combined with the high-quality belt drive system provide you with an incredibly smooth and silent ride. Not only does this provide you with increased momentum for more intensive workouts, it also ensures you will not disturb other members of your household if you are working out from a spare room or empty corner.
This bike also provides plenty in the way of customisation. The handlebar can be adjusted to best meet your positioning requirements, while the seat can be easily moved backwards and forwards, or vertically, to comfortably accommodate your riding position. This exercise bike also delivers when it comes to resistance settings. You can adjust resistance settings with ease thanks to a twisting mechanism, meaning you can make instant adjustments to resistance levels in the middle of a training session.
The onboard digital monitor also provides you with all the essential information you need for a premium workout session. The LCD screen gives you readings on session time, speed, distance, calories burned and more besides. A 4-ways padded seat and superior safety features make this exercise bike a solid choice for those looking for a piece of equipment that will hold up well to rigorous use.
This folding exercise bike from ANCHEER is a great choice for those after something compact and portable, yet something that doesn’t skimp on essential training features and tech. The sturdy X-frame is well worth a mention, with the sturdy build still allowing you to maintain excellent levels of balance during your workout.
You have plenty of adjustment potential here as well, with six different levels allowable for seat adjustments alone. There is also ten levels of magnetic resistance to choose from, giving you plenty of choice for when it comes to taking training up a notch.
If you are looking for an exercise bike that is more discreet and lower in profile, the DeskCycle is the way to go. This innovative exercise bike is one of the lowest available on the market, with a maximum pedal height of just ten inches. Because of its small design, this exercise bike is ideal for use when you are sat working at your desk, allowing you to burn off calories and strengthen muscles as you work through your daily schedule.
While other pedal exercise bikes have relatively limited performance when it comes to resistance, the DeskCycle impresses with a varied range of resistance settings. You can choose from eight different resistance settings with this machine, giving you plenty of options if you are looking to build toward a more intensive exercise routine.
The magnetic resistance of this machine ensures a smooth and silent pedal motion. This is particularly important if you are looking to introduce this machine to your home study or office. The magnetic resistance element found here is in fact the same patented system you will also find at work with the MagneTrainer.
Despite the compact nature of this pedal exerciser, you can still make use of an integrated display screen that boasts five different functions, including speed, time, distance, calories and scan readings. A great value option for those looking for a more versatile choice of exercise bike they can fold into their daily routine with ease.
If you are looking for something a little different, the DeskCycle2 is definitely something you want to look into. This compact exercise bike can be tucked discreetly underneath your desk, allowing you to undertake laid-back cycle sessions as you work. Magnetic resistance is at the heart of this bike, giving you a smoother pedal motion that’s both quiet in operation and perfect for working out your joints.
You have eight different resistance settings to choose from, allowing you to up your game as you go. What’s more, despite the low profile design of this exercise bike, you don’t have to dispense with the convenience of an LCD display. You will still be able to see essential stats on speed, time, distance and calories. A great value option for those looking to incorporate workouts into their everyday routine.
The DKN AM-E is an ideal choice for those seeking an exercise bike that can be readily adjusted as you become more accustomed to your workout, helping you achieve increased strength as you go. There is a dozen pre-set programmes to choose from here, with no less than 32 levels of magnetic resistance on offer. A large console screen display is also on offer, giving you clear view of all the essential statistics you’ll need to ensure premier workout performance. Pulse sensors can be found in the comfortable hand grips, making it easy for you to know how you’re doing as you train.