If you enjoy participating in indoor cycling sessions with a group, living through a pandemic year might have convinced you that having a bike at home is a good idea. And if you’re a serious biker who likes riding outside, you might want a backup plan for when the weather turns. No matter what you’re looking for, our reviews of home exercise bikes have you covered.
Choosing the Right Exercise Bike
You can make any necessary adjustments to the item for fit and comfort before making a purchase if you try it on in a store. However, you cannot perform a pre-purchase inspection when shopping online. Thus, we evaluated each bike based on its flexibility, including the precision with which the seat and handlebars may be adjusted to suit the rider. In the opinion of our experts, the best bikes are those that allow for fine-grained adjustments rather than simple on-off toggles. If you don’t, the seat height can be too low on one setting and too high on the next. Our lowest-scoring bikes in this category featured seat height choices that varied by more than an inch, making it impossible to accommodate a wide range of riders’ needs. Having a wide range of height adjustments is also useful, especially for those who are exceptionally tall or short.
Look for a warranty that covers the main moving parts for at least two years and the labor for at least a year. The best service contracts we examined covered the frame for life, the other components for three years, and the labor for one year. The cheapest providers provide only a year’s worth of coverage for the frame and as low as six months for components and labor.
Identify the supplementary functions that you would like to have. Accessories like water bottle holders, weight plates, and heart rate monitors are all possible examples. Make sure it has a reading shelf big enough for your book, tablet, or smartphone if you don’t want a linked bike or if you want to utilize the bike and read or watch something while you’re not in class. When shopping for a bike, be sure to pay attention to the sort of pedals it has, as some models, like the Peloton Bike, necessitate the usage of specialist clip-in biking shoes.
Whether or not your bike is connected and has a video screen, a good display will indicate some combination of your heart rate, calories burned, speed, revolutions per minute (RPM, or cadence in the riding lingo), and data like time and distance. The inclusion of a resistance reading is recommended by our specialists. A few of the bikes we tested didn’t, leaving riders to guess at the level of resistance based solely on the position of the manual knob. Because of this, it might be challenging, if not impossible, to repeat exercises in order to monitor improvement over time.
Warning: Exercise bikes feature many moving parts and might be dangerous if not used correctly. Keep small children away from exercise bikes and other equipment that does not have a safety lock. While you’re using your exercise bike, be sure kids can’t get to it.