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See Why Exercise Bikes are so Popular

Exercise Bikes are an excellent way to keep in shape without ever leaving your home. That is why they are becoming one of the most popular pieces of exercise equipment on the market today. There are really two types of exercise bikes that you can buy.

One is the “Recumbent Bike” or “Upright Bike” that has a flywheel and usually magnetic resistance and the other is the “Indoor Cycle” that looks like a stationary bike with adjustable seat and handlebars.

Exercise Bike Benefits

Exercise bikes can give you a great cardio workout without the side effects like sore knees, joints and back because it is a non-weight bearing exercise. Exercise Bikes are considered non-weight bearing exercise because most of your weight is getting supported by the seat.

Weight bearing exercises (Aerobics, Weight Lifting, Walking, Treadmills) you’re carrying your own weight and then some.

Both types of these exercises are good for you it’s just non-weight bearing exercises will produce less strain on the body. But remember with any exercising there will always be some kind of pain associated with vigorous exercise (No pain No Gain). That’s why the more you exercise (properly) the more your body will get used to it and the after effects will diminish over time.

Building muscles in your legs and buttocks are another great benefit of the exercise bike. It won’t build big muscles but it will definitely burn fat and tone your entire lower body when used properly and on a regular basis.

Recumbent Bike

If you have a bad back this is probably the exercise bike you should be looking to buy. The Recumbent Bike will have the seat closer to the ground and the pedals in front of you so your hips and knees are at the same levels. This will take the pressure off of the lower back.

Recumbent Bikes are manually powered unlike Treadmills and require human energy to turn the pedals. Most recumbent bikes use “Magnetic Resistance” that can be increased or decreased to whatever tension you want. They also come with handle bars either in the front or back usually the latter which will help you bare down harder if you have increased the tension.

Most of these Bikes will have an adjustable seat or bar that will regulate the distance between the pedals and seat. The seat on the recumbent bike is different than that on the upright or indoor cycle because it is usually flat on the bottom and has a back rest just like a chair and that’s why they are so comfortable to ride.

Buying a Recumbent Bike

The gauges that you will find on these bikes are the same as the upright bikes and will probably include a LCD screen that will show Speed, Distance, Time, Fat Burned and even CD players and TV’s. A good recumbent bike will cost you at least $200 and can go up to $4000 if you want all the bells and whistles.

The footprint on the recumbent bike will always be larger than that of the Upright Bike. Make sure you know the exact footprint of the bike and the location in your home you want it to be. The Recumbent bike will be similar in width to the Upright bike but they are usually longer and take up more space.

Upright Bike

The seat on the upright bike will be higher off the ground compared to the recumbent bike and the pedals will be down in front of you so your hips and knees are not parallel, just like a real bicycle. If you don’t have a bad back then this bike is probably better to buy because it will take up less space.

This bike is just like the recumbent bike which has no motor and runs on human energy. You will usually find a magnetic resistance flywheel in which tension can be increased or decreased by using a knob.

The Upright Bike will have a seat that can go up or down but not forward or backwards. The Seat on these bikes is very similar to the ones you will find on bicycles like ten speeds and mountain bikes. These seats are flat and narrow in the front and wider in the back with no back rest.

Buying a Upright Bike

The gauges found on these bikes usually include Speed, Distance, Time, Fat Burning, Fan and CD Players. The number of gauges and programs found on these bikes probably depend on how much you are willing to pay. A good Upright Bike will cost you at least $200 and can go up to $2000 or more.

The footprint of the Upright Bike is usually smaller than the Recumbent Bike. These bikes are usually the same width but are shorter in length so make sure you know the footprint before you buy.


The life of your exercise bike will probably be dictated by how much tension you apply to your flywheel. Exercise bikes used every day with maximum tension will probably not last as long as an exercise bike used three times a week with medium tension.

It’s how you want to use them and how often you will need to replace them when they wear out. One great way to use exercise bikes is to put them in front of your TV because nothing is better and passes time quickly them cycling while watching your favorite shows.


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