An exercise bike is, in essence, a piece of stationary workout equipment designed after the bicycle. Most people think of exercise bikes as public gym workout equipment, but in fact, it is easy to get an affordable stationary exercise bike for personal use in your own home.
This guide lays out the vast array of benefits of exercise bike types from, stationary, spin and recumbent, as well as general advice for safest and most effective use.
Table of Contents
- General Health Benefits of Low Impact Exercise Bikes
- Different Types of Exercise Bikes & Their Benefits
- Getting the Most Out Of Your Exercise Bike: Pro Tips
- People Also Ask (FAQs)
General Health Benefits of Low Impact Exercise Bikes
1. Effective Aerobic Workout
2. Helps with Strength Training
3. Convenient, Easy Way to Fitness
4. Slows the Aging Process
Different Types of Exercise Bikes & Their Benefits
Stationary bikes come in a number of different builds, each of which offers an experience unique from the others; however, you do not need to worry that you are seriously missing out if you choose one over another, since there is considerable overlap in the potential benefits of riding any of these exercise bikes.
A well-designed stationary bike will allow you to work out comfortably—to the point that you will probably be surprised by how easily you handle a challenging workout. There should be:
Most modern exercise bikes for gym and home use are magnetic exercise bikes. That is, they have a flywheel that absorbs momentum to keep the ride smooth. You can change resistance by a manual dial or digital control (depending on the model) that adjusts the position of magnets in relation to the flywheel.
1. Benefits of Upright Stationary Bikes
If you have decent balance and mobility, and want a workout that will better imitate actual outdoor cycling (as opposed to a rehab workout), then an upright bike is probably what you want.
2. Benefits of Recumbent Bikes
The biggest benefits of using a recumbent bike are that it is easier to mount and will have more comfortable seating since recumbents are made for the rider to sit back while riding.
3. Benefits of Dual-Action Bikes
There are both upright and, less commonly, recumbent models with upper-body workout features.
4. Benefits of Air Bikes
Air bikes are, arguably, a special type of dual-action upright bike, but since the pedals and arm handles are part of the same air resistance mechanism, the air bike feels more like an elliptical than other dual-action upright workout bikes.
5. Benefits of Spin Bikes
Spin bikes are increasingly trendy for both gym and home use.
Getting the Most Out Of Your Exercise Bike: Pro Tips
The most basic piece of advice here is to be sure that the seat is at a level where, at the bottom of a pedal stroke, your leg is slightly bent - not extended or stretching, but not really flexed either. You want to make sure your seat is comfortable.
If your bike has handlebar level adjustment, or seat horizontal or angle adjustments, then simply adjust until your position feels natural - not stretching or bending.
If you are someone who has trouble lifting your legs or keeping balance, it would be safer to get a model, usually a recumbent, with a low walk-through (the area between the handle/console and the seat/pedals is no more than a couple of inches off the ground).
Depending on how much you are willing to spend, you can get Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, instructional or entertaining apps, and/or built-in speakers.
However, even many inexpensive stationary bikes have at least basic workout metrics and a support rack for your phone or tablet. Also, there are many free workout apps available for your mobile device to get you started.
Bicycle Workout Tips
Be sure to warm up and cool down with a few minutes of low intensity pedaling. If you have not been exercising previously, be sure to increase the intensity and duration of your workout gradually.
Workout instructors say that many people jump on a workout machine and go hard with great enthusiasm, only to quit a few weeks later because of injury.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
Is 30 minutes on a stationary bike enough?
Yes. Beginners should start with no more than 30 minutes of cycling. Intermediate and advanced cyclists often use increased resistance and/or interval training, all of which can be accomplished in 30 minutes.
Will I lose weight cycling 30 mins a day?
In general, yes—but obviously, if you eat more, to the point that you replace the calories burned, then you might not lose weight at first. However, cycling 30 mins/day should still give you added energy, reduce stress, and foster a sense of accomplishment.
Furthermore, you should find you can increase the intensity of your workout over time, which means that you will burn more calories in the same amount of time. Therefore, in the end, if you keep with it, you will probably lose body fat, if not overall body weight.
Is a stationary bike better than a treadmill?
Overall, it is a tie. It depends significantly on your condition, fitness level, and goals, and it depends on the type of stationary bike. Compared with treadmills, recumbent bikes come up lacking when it comes to burning calories or improving cardiovascular health.
Still, they do take pressure off of joints and more strongly target leg muscles: The big health benefit of a recumbent bike is that it might allow you to get a great workout when you might not otherwise be able to.
Does cycling reduce belly fat?
Overall loss of body fat will naturally trim the waist some. Plus, unlike some abdominal workouts, biking will not bulk up the ab muscles much, and so it can only reduce your waist circumference.
Whether you are young or old, an exercising novice or a seasoned cyclist, there are definite benefits of riding a stationary bike. You just have to find the type of stationary exercise bike that suits your needs; ideally, you should also get some extra bike features that keep you happy and comfortable as you work toward your goals.