How to choose your indoor bike
Buying an exercise bike may seem trivial, yet making the right choice can quickly turn out to be complicated for novices. Which model for what purpose? What kind of program meets my needs? So many questions that we will answer in order to help you in your decision-making to choose the best exercise bike.
In this article we will cover
- Why choose an exercise bike?
- The benefits of the exercise bike
- Technical specifications
Why choose an exercise bike?
Exercise bikes are an affordable piece sports equipment. Both for its price and its use, an indoor bike is ideal to maintain year round training. One main advantage is how simple they are to set up. With a small footprint, it easily finds its place in a living room, a bedroom or even a dedicated gym room.
Often used in the case of rehabilitation or recovery following an injury, it is safe for the joints and allows you to carry out a non weight bearing activity, while training the cardiovascular system .
The Benefits of Cycling at Home
Cardiovascular fitness: This is the main advantage of the exercise bike, it will make you work your myocardium as much as the other muscles in your body. Thus, you will gradually develop your cardio-muscular endurance and will find aerobic benefits across all of your sporting activities.
Multiple benefits on body shape: A home bike session uses the larger muscles of your body, including buttocks, thighs and calves, all of which will soon shape and tone . Without risk of shock on the joints, its movement of flexing and extension of the legs activates the blood circulation and can help combat cellulite. Combined with a balanced diet, it can be a weight loss ally to get rid of a few extra pounds.
A steady and progressive effort: The bike allows a smooth and steady training progression. You will be able to adjust your effort as needed, in both power and duration, session after session thanks to the variable programmes and resistance settings. Be constant in your workouts and you will quickly feel the results, as much on your endurance as on your body shape.
Choosing Bike Features and Specifications
Beyond your specific sporting expectations, certain technical criteria go into the process of choosing an exercise bike. Bikes vary greatly in price so look for a versatile model such as the JTX Cyclo 6 Bike that will accomodate your needs as you progress.
The inertia wheel.
As with elliptical bikes, the weight of the inertial wheel of a home bike will greatly influence your pedaling. It is one of the most important selection criteria. Thus, the heavier the wheel, the smoother and smoother your pedaling. Great for improving your technique.
|Weight of the wheel||Sports Profile||Goal|
|Up to 5Kg||Great beginner, senior||rehabilitation, beginner|
|From 6 to 8Kg||Novice||Weight Loss, Cardio Exercises, Endurance|
|From 9 to 14Kg||Regular sports||Improved overall performance|
|More than 15Kg||Experienced athlete||Semi-professional training|
The resistance system.
You can choose between three types of exercise bikes:
- Mechanical/Friction resistance: the resistance, or difficulty pedaling, is adjusted by a wheel. This type of exercise bike is perfect for beginners who want to train for 1 to 2 hours per week.
- Magnetic : as the name suggests, resistance to stress is achieved by means of magnets placed on the inertia wheel. Thus, the more numerous these magnets are, the more precise and consistent the resistance will be. The adjustment of the resistance is made directly from the console of the bike. These can be noise-free, silent systems, and are suitable for regular training.
- Electric: Also called electromagnetic bike. Here, braking is generated by the force of an electric current, directly controlled by the console. Fluid, precise, fast and quiet, this type of braking significantly increases the comfort of use.
We advise you to opt for a strongly constructed frame. It will be more stable and will eliminate any risk of the bike tipping over. The bike’s wheelbase will also be important, so opt for a broad structure. Make sure that the cross-section of the bicycle frame indicates it that it is sufficiently strong.
Saddle and handlebars.
You will spend a lot of time on your bike, so its comfort should not be neglected. Remember to check the saddle and handlebars of your chosen bike.
- Adjustment of the handlebar: depending on the model, your handlebars can be fixed or adjustable. For the latter, you will be able to adjust it in height and back and front to adapt to your shape and avoid pain, especially in your back. This type of handlebar is preferred to ensure a proper posture.
- Adjusting the seat : Depending on the model, you can adjust your seat in two ways. height adjustment to adapt to the length of your legs and avoid strain on the joints. In depth, to offer you an ideal distance from the handlebars ensuring a perfect posture to pedal safely for your body shape and size.
Ease of storage
All bicycle models do not have the same suitability for storage, so it is important for you to determine which ones you feel are essential to your needs.
Remember to check:
- the presence or absence of moving wheels , they will help you in the storage of your equipment
- if your model is foldable to reduce its bulk and ease its storage
- if your exercise bike has level adjusters to ensure better stability and not to experience annoying vibrations with each movement.
Heart Rate Sensors
Although not all models are equipped with heart rate monitors, to choose the best exercise bike we strongly advise you opt for a bike with this feature.
These touch sensors are usually placed on the handlebars. They will allow you to optimise your session by offering you the opportunity to monitor your progress in real time or by giving you an estimate of the number of calories burned according to your age. The heart rate monitor will allow you to target specific workout goals (endurance, weight loss, muscle strengthening).
The console of your bike will allow you to control the various training programs and access it’s different functions and features. Depending on the model, data such as speed, distance, duration or number of calories expended will be displayed so you can control your effort and adjust it as you exercise.
There are a wide variety of control panels with all sorts of programmes and functions, and your choice will have to be made according to your requirements and budget. Bear in mind that having a good range of training programs can play a role on maintaining your motivation.
A good range of programmes will motivate you to achieve your goals. Different types of preset programmes will automatically adjust the pedaling resistance. Some models will even allow you to directly connect your tablet to the console for instant viewing and tracking of all your workouts.
Choose a Bike for Your Individual Needs
Whether you are just returning to physical activity, training for an event or just keeping yourself fit and healthy, an indoor bike is chosen primarily according to your needs.
The exercise bike as part of a rehabilitation program.
Choose a bike offering good stability and adjustability to ensure lumbar comfort. Try to choose a bike with good resistance control and smooth movement. Also consider a “sitting bike”, as it offers a particularly comfortable seat thanks to its large backrest allows good support. This type of exercise bike is especially suitable for those in rehabilitation or with back problems.
This type of bike is also ideal for working the larger muscles of the lower limbs (glutes, thighs, calves), making them great for cardio-respiratory exercises. Indeed, more comfortable than upright bikes, the sessions may be longer for endurance work. Note however that they tend to take up more space.
So there you have it, some top tips to help you choose the best exercise bike for your needs. Why not take a look at some of the models we have on offer right now in our spinning and exercise bike store.