Exercise bikes provide a low-impact cardiovascular workout that’s easy on the joints, but can still help you work up a sweat. The best stationary bikes combine effective resistance settings with a user-friendly design, and are durable enough to withstand repeated use. We consult expert and owner reviews to identify the most reliable, comfortable and convenient bikes..
Folding exercise bikes have greatly improved in recent years. As of February 2011, you can buy a folding exercise bike that compares in quality with a regular exercise bike. If you are in the market for a folding bike, make sure you can comfortably fold it up and move it to wherever you plan to store it. Some models are easy to fold. Some have handles to make it easier to transport them. Make sure you know how big the bike is when it is folded up before you get it home and attempt to store it in a closet or beneath your bed.
How to Choose the Best Exercise Bike
For many people, an exercise bike is the first piece of exercise equipment we bring into our homes, but it is important to choose a bike that is useful, and one that provides excellent value for the money. Many a poor quality bike has ended up being an expensive clothes rack, so it pays to do your homework and find out the factors that make a great exercise bike.
Why an Exercise Bike
They provide a number of important benefits to users, no matter what their level of fitness or fitness goals. One of the best things about these bikes is that there is no learning curve. If you can sit down and pedal, you can use an exercise bike.
In addition, fitness bikes can provide an excellent cardiovascular workout, and cardiovascular exercise has been shown time and time again to reduce the occurrence of many of our most serious diseases, including heart disease, diabetes and others. Working out a couple of times a week on an exercise bike can provide excellent benefits, both in terms of weight loss and overall fitness.
Best of all, exercise bikes provide all these benefits in a very low impact way. Compared to many other forms of exercise, like running or jogging, they are very easy on the knees and joints. This makes workouts perfect for those who are prone too, or recovering from, sports injuries. As a matter of fact, exercise bike routines are a cornerstone of sports medicine programs around the country.
Factors to Look At
When shopping for a bike, there are a number of things to consider. Some of the most important factors to look at when shopping include:
1. Height Adjustments. It is important to choose a bike whose height is easily adjustable. This adjustment will allow riders of all heights to easily use the equipment, an especially critical factor if more than one user will be riding it. It is of course important that all riders are comfortable on the exercise bike, as exercise equipment that is not comfortable to use will be unlikely to see much use.
2. Seat. It is also important to make sure that the seat fits you properly, and that the seat is large enough to accommodate riders of all sizes. If you purchase the exercise bike from a traditional store, be sure to try it out and make sure the seat is comfortable. Fortunately, if the seat is not up to snuff, it is relatively easy to purchase and install a new seat on most models of exercise bikes.
3. Pedals. The pedals of the bike should be easy to operate and provide smooth operation. In addition, many models of exercise bike provide an easy way for users to strap their feet into place while riding.
4. Safety. It is important to make sure that all the moving parts of the exercise bike, like the chain, are covered with a safety shroud. This will help to ensure safe operation and make sure that small children and pets cannot be inadvertently injured by the device.
5. Weight Rating. It is also important to choose an exercise bike that is rated for your weight. Different models of bike will come with different weight ratings, and it is important to choose one that is capable of supporting your pre-workout weight. Many of the best exercise bikes are rated for weights of up to 300 to 400 pounds, so finding a good one should not be that much of a problem.
6. Adjustable Intensity. It is also a good idea to look for an exercise bike that provides an adjustable workout. Most provide a way to adjust the intensity of a workout, and this is an especially important factor for those embarking on an exercise routine. Adjustable tension will help make the workouts more intense as your fitness level increases, providing continual challenges as your level of fitness improves.
7. Heart Rate Monitor. Another good way to track your level of fitness is to use the heart rate monitor that is included on many models of upright and recumbent exercise bikes. A heart rate monitor is a great way to track your progress and gauge the intensity of the workout. In addition to heart rate monitors, many models provide additional features, like tracking for calories burned and distance ridden.
8. Warranty. In addition to these important factors, it is important to look for an exercise bike whose manufacturer provides a lengthy warranty. The warranty period will of course vary from model to model and manufacturer to manufacturer, and while it is true that most of the time the most expensive models will have the longest warranties this is not always the case. It is important to look for a minimum warranty that includes coverage of materials and labor for at least one year. Some of the most expensive models come equipped with five year, ten year or even lifetime warranties on the frame, and some even kick in extensive warranty coverage on labor, parts and electronics as well.
9. Price. When it comes to price, shoppers can expect to pay anywhere from a low of about $500 to $1500 or more for a high end fitness center quality machine. While there are some cheaper models on the market, most of them are of questionable quality. As with other fitness equipment purchases, it is important to balance quality and value when shopping.
The first reason you are going to want to check out reviews of the exercise bikes is to test whether or not the quality is up to the average consumers standards. You can generally tell whether or not the quality is there by checking to see what type of rating most people give the product. If a majority of the consumers are giving the product a high rating, the chances are that the product is going to be high quality.
Another good reason to check out reviews is to ensure that the product has a sufficient amount of durability. Obviously, if you are purchasing a product, you are going to want to be sure that it is durable. To do so, you will need to really look for reviews of people that had the product for long periods of time. You really cannot tell how durable a product is until you check to see how it fairs after a bunch of falls and/or usage. By looking at long term reviews, you should be able to tell whether or not the product is durable enough to warrant a purchase.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to check out exercise bike reviews when you are trying to make a purchasing decision.