Exercise bikes

Exercise, indoor, or fitness bikes are great for your health. These can be electric or manual. We have researched the best exercise bikes in 2021
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Exercise Bikes

An exercise bike is also known as a stationary bike, spinning bike, fitness bike, indoor bike, and sometimes a smart bike. There might be slight differences between, let’s say, a typical spinning bike and a smart bike but the theory remains the same. An exercise bike sits at a place indoors and you can cycle on it. This exercise is proven better than a treadmill as cycling is a more wholesome fitness exercise than walking or running.

The main application of exercise bikes is in weight loss, burning calories, or staying fit.

Exercise bikes are good for home-based cardio when simply walking is not enough. Depending on the intensity, you can burn upwards of 600 calories an hour. Indoor cycling, therefore, is a great way to lose weight by burning more calories than your intake daily.

Health Benefits of Exercise Bikes

An exercise bike does not just help you burn calories and lose weight. Apart from a great cardio regime, it can also help you build a healthy body. How does it do that?

Few key benefits of daily exercise cycling are:

  • Strengthening your lungs and heart
  • Improving your metabolism and the body’s ability to utilize oxygen
  • Regulating high blood pressure
  • Improving the respiratory system

Exercising 5 days a week for at least 30 minutes on an exercise bike is a great way to achieve all these health benefits.

Types of Exercise Bikes

Few terms are used interchangeably when discussing exercise bikes. These do not mean the same thing and are, in fact, different types of exercise bikes meant for different types of uses.

Here is a basic primer on what these are and when they are a good choice.

Upright Exercise Bike

Upright exercise bikes are also called static or stationary exercise bikes. These are the most common and popular types of exercise bikes. It is typical home fitness equipment. The position you will be in while exercising on an upright bike will be close to an actual road bike. These are also the most affordable of the lot.

The main purpose of an upright exercise bike is to help you undertake physical or cardio exercising without intensifying things too much. It is more of a general fitness equipment. If you are new to exercising, then an upright exercise bike will be a great entry into the habit.

There is a special type of upright exercise bike called “recumbent”. Recumbent exercise bikes work pretty much the same way a typical upright bike does but position you slightly differently so that the overall comfort is better. People with back pain, injuries, or knee pain will enjoy the saddle-like seats and lower back support of recumbent exercise bikes.

Few manufacturers also design hybrid exercise bikes in which you can switch between an upright and a recumbent position. These might also be called combination exercise bikes.

Upright exercise bikes are low-impact fitness options for improving muscle tone, legs, and doing a cardio workout.

Indoor Cycling or Studio Bike

An indoor cycling bike is precisely what it sounds like. Instead of cycling outdoors, you will be cycling indoors. Not just for a cardio benefit.

An indoor bike is specifically designed for people who regularly cycle (whether for commute or professionally). These bikes come with a greater variety of resistance levels.

You can simulate ground inclination and gears with an indoor bike. So, although they can be used to do even more rigorous training and workout than upright exercise bikes, they are commonly used by people who cycle regularly and need training indoors to supplement their outdoor training or usage.

For example, if you commute to work on a bike and there is a lot of elevation on your route, you can train for it at home by simulating the gears with an indoor bike.

A high saddle and open flywheel characterize an indoor cycling or studio bike.

A spinning bike is also a type of indoor cycling bike. However, a spinning bike is more often seen in group fitness classes than at the home of the professional cyclist. Both make you hunch over and help workout more rigorously than an upright or stationary exercise bike.

Air Bikes

Air bikes are full-body workout equipment. As you pedal, you will be pushing and pulling the chest-level handles. Also known as fan or cross-trainer bikes, air bikes have a large fan driven by the pedaling power and speed. The faster you pedal, the more resistance it generates. As a result, you can train harder and harder on an air bike.

It is a type of bike meant specifically for an intense full-body workout.

Other Variations of Exercise Bikes

That is not all. Although most commonly you will find one of the three types of exercise bikes listed above, there are more:

  • Watt bikes mimic road cycling. They collect data on the ride and your technique including heart rate, performance, etc. The power output is recorded in watts (thus the name). It uses a pretty realistic braking system.
  • A smart bike (also called an interactive exercise bike) is like an indoor cycling bike but comes with additional screens that can connect to a range of apps. Some also automatically adjust the resistance according to a workout app. These are costlier than normal exercise bikes.
  • Many exercise bikes are “self-powered”. It means that they have an advanced power system that enables them to produce power within the bike using a generator. These bikes do not need any power outlet. You can take them anywhere in your home.

Wrapping Up

The world of exercise bikes is simply too vast. Choosing between an upright bike, indoor bike, air bike, spinning bike, smart bike, and so on can be a nightmare.

First, get your priorities right. Once you know what is most important to you, you will know which type of fitness bike to go for. We have product comparisons to help you make a better decision as per your needs.

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