The 7 Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes for Home Use in 2023
Most of us love exercising on recumbent bikes because they offer zero-impact cardio workouts with no pressure on the joints and bones. However, finding the best recumbent exercise bike that fits your needs is a complete challenge because there are so many to choose from on the market.
This is why we decided to go through the entire market, try a few recumbent bikes, and put together an updated list of the most comfortable and the best recumbent bikes in 2023. This way we are hoping to take away the research pressure from you and help you choose what suits your budget and needs.
In this comparison, review, and buying guide, we will evaluate several recumbent exercise bikes from my perspective based on my personal knowledge about each exercise bike and let you know how each recumbent measures up in different categories of performance.
We will also explain what sets each recumbent exercise bike apart from its competitors, cover comparable recumbent machines to consider, and explain the pros and cons of each exercise recumbent bike based on my experience.
Additionally, we will describe how each of these recumbent exercise bikes has evolved from previous models, make sure every key decision-making factor for each recumbent machine is clear, and describe every tiny feature that can affect your recumbent exercise experience.
We already went ahead and recommended one machine as the best overall (Nautilus R618), and explained why we consider this recumbent stationary bike the best among all the recumbent exercise bikes that we tested and reviewed.
So, if you are looking for a recumbent exercise bike for your home to either warm up your body before an intense leg workout session or do a cardio workout, or try to recover from surgery or an accident, here are the best quality recumbent exercise bikes in 2023 that we recommend.
Best Overall Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Nautilus R618 has a range of features that make it stand out from other recumbent exercise bikes in its class and I believe it’s the best overall recumbent exercise bike for the elderly, those recovering from injuries, beginners, and professional athletes.
One of the most notable features of the Nautilus R618 is its low price. Despite its low cost, it includes advanced features such as Bluetooth technology, resistance controls on the handlebars, cycling app connectivity, and the ability to create four user profiles for every family member. These features make the Nautilus R618 a versatile and practical choice for families who want to share an exercise bike.
The Nautilus R618 also has 29 programs to start, which provide a wide range of workout options. The adjustable console and backlit dual screens make it easy to use the bike, even in low-light conditions. Additionally, the gel cushion provides enhanced comfort during long workouts, which is essential for anyone who plans on using the bike for extended periods.
The Nautilus R618’s generous warranty is another significant selling point. The bike comes with a 15-year frame, 3-year parts, and a 1-year labor warranty, which shows the manufacturer’s confidence in its product. This warranty gives you peace of mind, knowing that you are protected if anything goes wrong with the recumbent exercise bike.
Overall, the Nautilus R618 is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a comfortable recumbent exercise bike. Its low price, advanced features, versatile workout programs, comfort-enhancing features, and generous warranty make it an excellent investment for anyone looking to improve their fitness.
Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes Compared
|Recumbent names||My verdict||Rider support||Flywheel weight||Resistance type||Resistance controls||Display type||Media shelf||Preset programs|
|Nautilus R618||Best value recumbent exercise bike overall with advanced technology and decent quality||4'6" to 6'6" | 325 Lbs||30-Lb||25-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||BACKLIT WITH BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||29|
|3G Cardio Elite||Extreme quality and comfort but also overpriced||5' to 6'5" | 350 Lbs||8-Lb||16-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||BACKLIT WITHOUT BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||10|
|Schwinn Fitness 270||Good value compared to Sole and Nordictrack but overpriced compared to Nautilus||4'5" to 6'6" | 300 Lbs||17-Lb||25-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||NO RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||BACKLIT WITH BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||29|
|Sole Fitness R92||Very durable and comfortable but not ideal for aerobic and anaerobic workouts||5' to 6'4" | 300 Lbs||20-Lb||20-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||NO RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||BACKLIT WITH BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||10|
|Nordictrack VR21||Overpriced but durable and advanced technology||5'3" to 6'6" | 350 Lbs||23-Lb||25-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||NO RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||NO BACKLIT & NO BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||32|
|SHF SF-RB4850||Affordable but lower quality and outdated technology||4'10" to 6'4" | 300 Lbs||6.6-Lb||16-LEVELS OF ELECTRONIC MAGNETIC||NO RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||BACKLIT BUT NO BLUETOOTH||WITH TABLET HOLDER||12|
|Exerpeutic 1000||Affordable and compact but extremely basic||5'1 to 6'2" | 300 Lbs||7-Lb||8-LEVELS OF MANUAL MAGNETIC||NO RESISTANT CONTROLS ON THE GRIPS||NO BACKLIT & NO BLUETOOTH||WITHOUT TABLET HOLDER||NONE|
Quick Overview: Top 7 Recumbent Exercise Bikes
Nautilus R618 Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Nautilus R618 is a recumbent bike that offers a sturdy design and a comfortable seat for users of all levels. It features 29 preset workout programs, including heart rate-controlled programs, and has Bluetooth connectivity for users who want to interact with the virtual environment.
The Nautilus R618 is a 107-lb recumbent bike that has a well-constructed design, with a backlit LCD display that enables users to track their workout progress and save it on the machine or their favorite fitness app including Zwift.
The console has 29 built-in workout preset programs to get users started immediately, and it features wireless/Bluetooth connection capability so they can connect your heart rate strap. Some of the preset programs are heart rate-controlled, so they automatically change the bike’s resistance to keep you within your desired heart rate target. So, when you choose for instance the fat burn program, it will make sure you stay within 50% to 70% percent of your heart rate.
The pedals feature adjustable straps and durable cranks. Additionally, the Nautilus R618 features a 30 lb flywheel, providing a smooth and natural cycling experience.
With 25 levels of magnetic resistance adjustable from the console and handgrips on the side of the seat, users can challenge themselves and progress their workouts. These features contribute to the overall quality and performance of the bike.
The frame is sturdy and stable during intense workouts, with two transport wheels located in front of the machine and an easy left rear handle that allows users to move and store the bike easily.
The R618 recumbent bike also features a comfortable and multi-position adjustable seat with a gel cover, which can be easily adjusted with the handle located on the side of the bike. The Airflow Mesh Flex adjustable backrest helps users stay fresh during long summer workout sessions.
Another feature that sets the Nautilus R618 apart from its competitors is the easy step-through and low step-up height, making it easier for senior users and those in recovery to get on the exercise bike.
Additionally, the semi-commercial quality, narrow q-factor, and tablet holder + an easy-to-reach bottle holder are features that stand out. The bottle holder is large enough to also keep your phone or keys while on the machine.
The monitor and electronic abilities are another major aspect of recumbent bikes today. The Nautilus R618 recumbent exercise bike has a good monitor for this price in regard to other recumbent exercise bikes.
It actually has 2 backlit LCD displays. The one on the bottom displays statistics like time, speed, distance, RPM, resistance level, calories burned, and heart rate. These stats can be seen in both metric and English measurements.
On the top screen, you can see the current workout program, selected resistance, and the profile name that they are using. There is the possibility to set up 4 different user profiles so every member of your family who uses the bike can enter and save their details so that each person can see his/her progress in the last 30 days. I don’t know of any other recumbent exercise bikes in this price range that would allow doing that.
There are also 12 different preset workout programs, including Rolling Hills and Interval Training. You can also choose from 17 additional workout programs, totaling 29. That’s not bad at compared to what Sunny Health and Fitness, Teeter, and Exerputic recumbent exercise bikes offer.
On the right side of the screen, your heart rate is displayed and you can see from zero to 100% heart rate. There is a row of heart rate guidance showing 50% warm-up, 50%-70% fat burn, 70%-80% aerobic, and 80%-90% anaerobic. Normally, you don’t want to reach 100% as it can be dangerous.
Once you start pedaling on the exercise bike, you can also see the intensity level based on 1%-10% on the left side of the screen. The more resistance you add and the harder you pedal, the heart rate goes up. For optimum results, I suggest you do at least 30 minutes of mixed fat burn, aerobic and anaerobic. But if you have heart rate issues, I suggest you avoid aerobic and anaerobic workouts.
One of the standout features of the Nautilus R618 is its comfortable and multi-position adjustable seat, which can be easily adjusted with the handle located on the side of the bike. You don’t need to get off the bike to adjust the seat for your height like cheaper recumbent bikes under $500. Just like a car seat, it slides backward and forward.
Although its backrest is not up and down adjustable, it does tilt a little bit and it is an airflow mesh flex which helps you stay fresh during long summer workout sessions. Some of the competitors like Stamina, Sunny, and Exerputic machines all have leather cushioned backrests that don’t allow airflow.
Another feature that sets the Nautilus R618 apart from its competitors is the easy step-through and low step-up height, making it easier for senior users and those in recovery to get on the exercise bike. You don’t need to step over the bike as you would on 3G recumbent exercise bike. So, it’s easier to mount and dismount.
In terms of design, the Nautilus R618 has a sturdy and stable frame that can withstand intense workouts. The two transport wheels located in front of the machine and an easy left rear handle allow users to move and store the bike with ease.
The semi-commercial quality, narrow q-factor, and tablet holder + easy to reach bottle holder are features that also stand out from other recumbent exercise bikes I have tried and reviewed.
In terms of drawbacks, you might find the console to be outdated and not as intuitive as other models on the market especially compared to Nordictrack R35 and VR25 recumbent bikes. Additionally, the bike’s weight of 107 lbs may make it difficult to move for some users.
One comparable product to consider is the Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike. Like the Nautilus R618, it has 29 preset workout programs and Bluetooth connectivity. However, it has a slightly lower weight capacity of 300 pounds, and its seat is not as comfortable as the Nautilus R618’s. Its flywheel is also 13 pounds lighter.
Another comparable product is the NordicTrack Commercial VR35 Recumbent Bike. It has a similar weight capacity to the Nautilus R618 and features a 20-pound flywheel. However, it doesn’t have any preset workout programs and does not have Bluetooth FTMS connectivity. It is also more expensive but has a 14-inch touchscreen which is a much better screen than the Nautilus R618’s 9-inch backlit console.
Overall, the Nautilus R618 recumbent exercise bike is an excellent option for anyone looking to stay fit at home. With its comfortable design, adjustable seat, and magnetic resistance levels, it can accommodate users of all levels as long as they are between 4 feet 6 inches to 6 feet 6 inches tall and under 325 pounds. The 15-year warranty on the frame, 3-year warranty on parts and electronics, and 1-year warranty on labor also provide peace of mind for users.
- 15-year warranty on the frame, 3-year warranty on parts, 3-year warranty on electronics, and 1-year warranty on labor.
- The monitor is Bluetooth enabled and has 2 backlit LCD displays. It shows statistics like time, speed, distance, RPM, resistance level, calories burned, and heart rate.
- The bike has 25 different resistance levels available, and an eddy current brake system with a belt drive that makes everything quiet and smooth.
- There are enough levels to allow for some fine-tuning while working out, and the flywheel is a heavy one, weighing 30 lbs.
- The bike has a 3-piece crank attaching the two pedals, which offers more durability and just a better all-around value.
- There are 4 different user profiles and 29 workout programs available, including Heart Rate, Rolling Hills and Interval Training.
- The floor stabilizers in the back keep the bike steady while working out, and the wheels on the front of the bike help with mobility.
- The handlebars next to the seat have pulse sensors and resistance controls for easy intensity adjustment.
- The Nautilus R618 recumbent exercise bike is easy to assemble thanks to the clear and concise instructions that come with the bike.
- The Nautilus R618 recumbent bike has a plastic backrest which can get uncomfortable.
- Although mine arrive good, there are a few consumer reviews of the bike arriving damaged.
- The bike is large and heavy, with a footprint that measures 67.3″L x 26.4″ W x 48.8″H and weighs 107 lbs.
- Right out of the box, it doesn’t connect to Zwift or Kinomap and you need the QZ app for that.
How Nautilus R618 Evolved From the Previous Model
When I was reviewing the Nautilus R618 and R616 models, I found that the R618 model had several improvements over the R616 model, which makes it more desirable for anyone’s needs.
One of the most significant differences between the two models is the addition of resistance controls on the grips of the R618 model. This feature is absent in the R616 model, and it made it more convenient for me to adjust resistance levels while working out. Another improvement I noticed in the R618 model was the seat’s comfort level. It had a foam and gel cushioned seat, which provided better comfort during longer workout sessions, compared to the R616 model’s only foam cushioned seat.
I also noticed that the R618 and R616 backrests were both made of plastic which unfortunately wasn’t as comfortable as the 3G recumbent’s backrest which is mesh. In terms of the console, the R618 model had an up-and-down tiltable dual-screen backlit console, providing better visibility and adjustability. Meanwhile, the R616 model had a fixed dual-screen backlit console so no matter your height, you are stuck with the same screen viewing angle.
Although both support the same user height, the R618 model could support users up to 325 Lbs, compared to the R616 model’s capacity of 300 Lbs. Additionally, the R616 and R618 models supported the “Explore The World” application right out of the box but for apps like Zwift and Kinomap, you would need the QZ app.
Overall, the Nautilus R618 model has made several improvements in terms of comfort, convenience, and adjustability, making it a better option for anyone looking for a more comfortable and convenient workout experience. However, the price is slightly higher, so you should take that into consideration before making a purchase decision.
|Features||Nautilus R618||Nautilus R616|
|Resistance||25-level electronic magnetic||25-level electronic magnetic|
|Grip Control||Resistance controls on the grips||None|
|Seat||Foam + gel cushion||Only foam cushion|
|Backrest||Hard plastic (not great)||Hard plastic (not great)|
|Crank||3-piece (good)||3-piece (good)|
|Console||Tiltable dual-screen backlit||Fixed dual-screen backlit|
|Extras||Media rack, speakers, fan||Media rack, speakers, fan|
|Applications||Explore The World (Zwift and Kinomap via QZ)||Explore The World (Zwift and Kinomap via QZ)|
|Flywheel||30 Lbs||30 Lbs|
|Warranty||15-Y frame, 3-Y parts, 1-Y labor||15-Y frame, 3-Y parts, 1-Y labor|
|Support||4’6″ to 6’6″ | 325 Lbs||4’6″ to 6’6″ | 300 Lbs|
3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Exercise Bike
The 3G Cardio Elite is a top-of-the-line recumbent exercise bike that provides commercial-level quality and superior value. It has a weight capacity of 350 pounds and a machine weight of 115 pounds.
The oversized, highly adjustable cushioned seat provides incredible comfort and will fit most users between 5’ and 6’5”. This is a little shorter range than the Nautilus R618 but still a good choice for many.
The Airflow Mesh Flex backrest tilts & adjusts to conform to your body shape and size and will keep your back cool. It’s probably the most comfortable recumbent bike I have tried and it has a lot to do with the saddle.
The recumbent bike features 16 levels of magnetic resistance that keep your cycling session as quiet as possible. Resistance is electronically adjustable so heart rate programs can actually change the resistance based on heart rate.
One unique feature of the 3G Elite recumbent bike is its resistance controls on the handlebars, which is much better than a resistance knob, making the ride more comfortable. So, you don’t need to lean forward or get off the seat every time you want to change intensity levels.
The only other recumbent exercise bike in this review and comparison guide that has that feature is the Nautilus R618. All the other recumbent stationary bikes have either a knob or controls on the console so you need to move during the workout to change resistance.
It also has 12 preprogrammed and 3 heart rate interactive workouts, allowing you to set preset calorie, time, watt, and distance goals as desired. Handheld Heart Rate Sensors and a wireless Heart Rate Strap (included) keep you informed while challenging yourself.
The backlit 3×5″ LCD display delivers all the necessary data of your workout progress. However, it lacks Bluetooth and ANT/+, speakers, a cooling fan, or USB charging ports. So, you can’t sync the workouts to Kinomap and other applications.
There is also a tablet shelf but it’s on top of the console so when you place a tablet, you can’t see the bike’s console. I prefer the Nautilus’s tablet holder because even when you place a tablet on the bike, there is still an additional console to see your progress.
The recumbent bike’s narrow Q factor distance between pedals makes for an extremely ergonomically correct ride. It also features a built-in bottle holder to keep you hydrated during workout routines.
The recumbent bike also comes with foot levelers and two transport wheels plus a transportation handle built into the back of the bike, making it easy to move around and store after use in case you have guests coming over or you prefer to use the exercise bike in a different position.
One downside to the 3G Elite recumbent bike is its “non-step-through frame,” which can be a total deal-breaker for senior users and those in recovery. However, if mounting and dismounting the seat isn’t an issue for you, it would make a lifetime cardio recumbent for you.
Compared to Nautilus R618, the 3G Elite recumbent bike is more expensive, but it has a higher-quality build. Its pedals are more comfortable and larger, its saddle is a whole different level of comfort, and it has additional seat adjustment to adjust the paddings. However, it lacks the step-through frame feature, which can be problematic for people with mobility issues.
3G Cardio, the Arizona-based company that manufactures the 3G Elite recumbent bike, offers an unmatched lifetime frame warranty, 7-year parts, and 1-year in-home labor. The company’s 5-star customer service is available 9-5 weekdays PST, and you can contact them with ease.
Overall, the 3G Elite recumbent bike is one of the best recumbent exercise bikes available in the market as of 2023, providing an incredibly comfortable and customizable workout experience. But if you like connect online, Nautilus R618 is a better choice.
- Excellent build quality with a sturdy frame and high weight capacity.
- Advanced LCD monitor that displays multiple workout statistics at once.
- 12 preset workout programs and 4 customizable user profiles.
- Motorized magnetic resistance system with 16 levels of resistance.
- Quiet operation thanks to the belt drive system.
- EKG sensors on handlebars for heart rate monitoring.
- Comes with a chest strap for telemetric heart rate monitoring.
- 7-year warranty on parts, 1-year on labor, and a lifetime warranty on the frame.
- Easy to assemble with helpful instructions and tools provided.
- Comfortable seat and backrest for extended workout sessions.
- Easy-to-reach built-in resistance controls on the handlebars.
- Very expensive compared to other recumbent bikes on the market.
- No online connectivity for tracking progress or using apps.
- No built-in cooling fans or speakers for entertainment during workouts.
- Requires an outlet for the motorized resistance system, limiting placement options.
- Basic computer compared to some other alternatives on the market.
- Its frame is not stepped through and is not easy to mount for the elderly.
How 3G Elite RB Evolved From the Previous Model
For review purposes, I tried out the 3G Elite RB recumbent bike, which is the recumbent version of the 3G Elite UB upright bike. I found that both bikes are great for indoor use, but the 3G Elite RB has a backrest that adds extra comfort during workouts.
For me, the addition of the backrest was a significant improvement. It provided the necessary support and comfort that I needed because at the time I had a little bit of knee pain and I couldn’t pedal without a backrest. In comparison, the 3G Elite UB only has a standard seat without back support which requires more balance and better back and knees.
Another feature that I appreciated was the wide pedals on the 3G Elite RB, which offered exceptional comfort during my rides. The wide pedals are designed to provide a better grip and reduce the chances of slipping, making it a safer option for those with less mobility.
Although the step-over design of the 3G Elite RB made it a little less easy for me to get on and off the bike, it was still easier compared to the 3G Elite UB because of its taller seat and lack of mounting and dismounting handles.
Both bikes have 16 levels of electronic magnetic resistance and 12 programs, including 3 heart rate and 1 watt program (16 in total). However, I found that the 3G Elite RB offered superior comfort with its mesh backrest and seat, while the 3G Elite UB only has a standard seat and no backrest.
In terms of price, the 3G Elite RB is more expensive than the 3G Elite UB, but I feel that the extra comfort and support it provides is well worth the price difference. Additionally, both bikes come with an 8-pound flywheel and a 7-year parts warranty and 1-year labor warranty which is really impressive. They can also support users who are 5′ to 6’5″ tall and up to 350 pounds.
Overall, I would highly recommend the 3G Elite RB recumbent bike for anyone who prioritizes comfort and support during their workouts. But if you want to burn more calories and don’t mind the lack of backrest, I would suggest he 3G Elite UB.
|Features||3G Elite RB||3G Elite UB|
|Resistance||16 Level electronic magnetic||16 Level electronic magnetic|
|Controls||Grip resistance controls||None|
|Programs||12 + 3 heart rate + 1 watt programs||12 + 3 heart rate + 1 watt programs|
|Frame||Step-over design||Step-over design|
|Pedals||Wide with exceptional comfort||Standard pedals with straps|
|Console||3×5″ backlit console||3×5″ backlit console|
|Applications||None (no Bluetooth or WiFi)||None (no Bluetooth or WiFi)|
|Flywheel||8 Lbs||8 Lbs|
|Warranty||7-Y Parts + 1 Labor||7-Y Parts + 1 Labor|
|Support||5′ to 6’5″ | 350 Lbs||5′ to 6’5″ | 350 Lbs|
Schwinn 270 Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Schwinn 270 is a premium quality recumbent exercise bike that boasts an attractive and modern design, along with a range of impressive features. Its robust frame is capable of accommodating users weighing up to 300 pounds, while the adjustable seat and handlebars allow for a personalized and comfortable riding position.
This model is an upgraded version of the Schwinn 230, featuring sturdier 3-piece cranks in place of the previous 1-piece cranks, a heavier flywheel (17-lb rather than 13-lb), and a larger dual-screen 7″ monitor as opposed to the earlier single-screen 5″ monitor. Moreover, the Schwinn 270’s seat has enhanced padding, providing riders with additional comfort during workouts.
The Schwinn 270 recumbent exercise bike also comes with a range of customizable features, including 25 levels of resistance, 29 pre-programmed workouts, and the ability to create up to four user profiles which are similar to the Nautilus R618.
The bike’s console is well-designed and easy to use, with two blue backlit LCD screen which is smaller than the Nautilus R618’s console but still displays all of your important workout data, including time, distance, calories burned, and heart rate.
The console also comes with Bluetooth connectivity, which allows you to sync your workout data with the Schwinn Trainer app or other popular fitness apps like MyFitnessPal. You could use the QZ app to also connect the bike to Kinomap or Zwift if you want to.
The Schwinn 270 is a smooth and quiet ride, with a high-speed, high-inertia drive system that ensures a consistent workout experience. The bike’s 25 levels of electronically adjustable magnetic resistance provide plenty of options for users of all fitness levels and the adjustable seat and handlebars make it easy to find a comfortable riding position.
Although I like its electronic magnetic resistance because it changes automatically for heart rate programs and to mimic virtual terrain on the apps, I wish there were resistance controls on the handlebars. This way you wouldn’t need to lean forward to reach the buttons on the screen for changing intensity and you could do it while leaning back as you would on the Nautilus R618.
The bike’s pre-programmed workouts are a great feature, providing a wide range of training options, including interval training, hill climbs, and endurance rides. The bike’s heart rate monitor is also a useful tool for monitoring your fitness level and ensuring that you are getting the most out of your workouts.
The Schwinn 270 is easy to assemble, and its adjustable seat and handlebars make it easy to find a comfortable riding position if you are anywhere from 4’5″ to 6’6″ tall. The adjustment range is wider compared to Sole R92 recumbent so if you are shorter, this is a better fit for you.
For sliding the seat backward and forward, you don’t need to get off the bike as you would on some other cheaper recumbent exercise bikes. You can do the adjustment while seated on the bike. The actual quality of the saddle cushion is not as good or thick as 3G or Nautilus R618 but it’s still pretty good. You can add a recumbent exercise bike seat cushion later if you feel saddle-sore or irritated.
Unlike the Schwinn 230 which has a 13-lb flywheel, this model has a heavier flywheel of 17-lb which is better is about the same weight of 3G and Sole R92 but a little lighter than the Nautilus R618. It’s good because it doesn’t wear out bearings like a 40-lb flywheel would but at the same time it has less momentum. So, as soon as you stop pedaling, the flywheel stops turning.
I am not impressed by its 90-day labor warranty but the 10-year frame, 2-year mechanical, 1 year electrical aren’t bad for a mid-range recumbent exercise bike especially compared to what brands like Sunny Health and Fitness offer.
The Schwinn 270 is not the cheapest recumbent exercise bike on the market, but it is a good-quality product with many impressive features. Its sturdy step-through frame and customizable settings make it a great choice for users of all fitness levels, and its Bluetooth connectivity and pre-programmed workouts make it a versatile and convenient recumbent exercise bike for home workouts.
- Large comfortable seat and backrest for extended workouts.
- Adjustable seat and handlebars to accommodate different users.
- 25 levels of electronic magnetic resistance for a silent and challenging workout.
- Large, easy-to-read dual-screen display with 29 workout programs.
- Built-in speakers and USB charging port for convenience.
- Bluetooth connectivity for tracking fitness data and syncing with apps.
- 1-year electronic and 2-year mechanical part warranty for added peace of mind.
- Tablet holder and bottle holder to stay hydrated and entertained.
- Backrest is breathable but it’s plastic and not mesh and soft like 3G RB.
- Assembly can be time-consuming and require two people.
- No resistance controls on the handlebars like those on Nautilus R618.
- Flywheel is lighter than Nautilus R618 recumbent.
- 90 day labor warranty is very poor compared to 3G Elite with 360 day labor warranty.
- More expensive but has fewer features than the Nautilus R618 recumbent.
How Schwinn 270 Evolved From the Previous Model
As someone who has firsthand experience with both the Schwinn 270 and Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bikes, I can say that the Schwinn 270 has evolved significantly from the previous model to provide users with more advanced features and better overall quality.
One of the most significant improvements in the Schwinn 270 over the Schwinn 230 is the resistance levels. The Schwinn 270 offers 25 electronic magnetic resistance levels compared to the Schwinn 230’s 20 levels, which provides users with more options for their workout intensity.
Additionally, the Schwinn 270 offers 29 programs and 4 profiles, while the Schwinn 230 only has 22 programs and 2 profiles. This means that the Schwinn 270 provides users with more workout options and the ability to save multiple user profiles.
Other improvements in the Schwinn 270 include a Bluetooth connection, a dual-screen blue backlit console, and the ability to connect to apps like Explore The World and even Zwift via QZ app. The Schwinn 230, on the other hand, does not have Bluetooth connectivity or app integration. And its pulse sensors on the grips require really long arms to reach them as they are below the seat level.
The Schwinn 270 and the 230 have some extra features such as built-in speakers, fans, a tablet holder, and a USB charging port. But the 270 Schwinn recumbent has a larger flywheel of 17-lbs compared to the Schwinn 230’s 13-lbs which affects the pedal stroke and momentum. Also, the Schwinn 270 has a more comfortable seat which is softer and has a good layer of cushion while the 230’s seat is plastic without cushion.
However, it is worth noting that the most advanced model in the Schwinn recumbent lineup is the Schwinn 290, which has a 7″ screen and better overall quality. But, for connecting to Zwift, it requires a JRNY membership.
Despite these improvements, I must say that while both the Schwinn 270 and Schwinn 230 are great recumbent exercise bikes, they just don’t have enough to compete with the Nautilus R618. The Nautilus R618 has a better seat, a better-built 3-piece crank, a heavier flywheel, more programs, and resistance controls on the grips. Overall, the Nautilus R618 is a better option for those looking for a high-quality recumbent exercise bike at a good price.
Note: There are two Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bikes. One version is called Schwinn 230 MY2016 (Made Year 2016) and the other version is called Schwinn 230 MY2020 (Made Year 2020). The MY2016 doesn’t have Bluetooth for application and heart rate monitor connectivity like the 230 MY2020 but it has 22 programs and 20 resistance levels which is more compared to MY2020’s 13 programs and 16 resistance levels. Schwinn MY2020 also has a larger screen which is 5.5″ but it doesn’t have speakers or a cooling fan like the Schwinn MY2016. Other than that, both models are the same and have USB port for charging and an AUX port for music, and the same drive and overall built.
|Features||Schwinn 270||Schwinn 230|
|Resistance||25-level electronic magnetic resistance||20-level electronic magnetic resistance|
|Seat||Foam cushioned (horizontally adjustable but vertically fixed)||Plastic breathable (horizontally adjustable but vertically fixed)|
|Backrest||Plastic breathable (fixed)||Plastic breathable (fixed)|
|Pedals||Basic pedals with 1-piece cranks||Basic pedals with 1-piece cranks|
|Console||Dual-screen blue backlit||Dual-screen (no backlit)|
|Applications||Explore The World (other apps through QZ)||None|
|Extras||Speakers, fans, tablet, and bottle holders, USB charging port||Speakers, fans, tablet, and bottle holders, USB charging port|
|Transportation||Transport handle and wheels||Only wheels|
|Support||4’5″ to 6’6″ | 300 Lbs||4’5″ to 6’6″ | 300 Lbs|
Sole Fitness R92 Recumbent Bike
The Sole R92 recumbent exercise bike is a comfortable and affordable option for fitness enthusiasts. Its zero-impact design makes it ideal for users of all fitness levels.
The bike is priced at $999, which is less expensive than Sole LCR, another model from the same brand that costs $1500. Sole LCR has some different features, including a higher max user capacity, larger workout display, more resistance levels, and a heavier flywheel, making it more comfortable with a smoother pedal stroke.
The Sole R92 has 20 magnetic resistance levels and 10 programs that offer interval exercises. The console features a 9-inch LCD display which is not backlit like 3G or Nautilus recumbent bikes but it allows users to monitor workout progress, even if they have a device or tablet in the holder on the top screen.
The console also includes speakers and a cooling fan to keep users entertained and fresh during the workout. The bike’s Bluetooth connectivity enables syncing with Sole App and other fitness tracking apps, but it doesn’t have a USB charging port like the Nautilus R618 recumbent bike.
You can connect your devices to the bike and save and track your workout data on the app but not on the bike like you would with the Nautilus. Connecting the bike machine to QZ App enables users to connect to Zwift and other apps.
While the bike has 10 preset workout options, including six standards, two custom, and two HR, it is not as impressive as the 29 programs offered by the Nautilus R616 and R618 recumbent exercise bikes.
The Sole R92 has a 20 lb flywheel that is perimeter-weighted, making it easy to start up and providing smooth and consistent workouts. The actual feel of the flywheel is smooth but the momentum would have been better if it was a little heavier flywheel.
I do like that the Sole R92 recumbent exercise bike features a step-through design, making it easy to mount the seat and ideal for seniors and those recovering from injuries. It’s easy to mount and dismount compared to 3G recumbent machine.
The adjustable pedals and straps keep your feet firm and steady during the workout but they are smaller and not as comfortable as 3G’s pedals. The bike also includes two pulse hand grips on the sides of the seat to monitor heart rate and two hand grips next to the console to help users sit and get off the seat easier.
Comfort is the most crucial factor when it comes to the best recumbent exercise bikes. The R92 features a padded seat bottom with a large cushioned back seat. It’s not breathable but definitely more comfortable than Schwinn and Nautilus’s backrests.
Although the backrest is fixed, the slide rails are adjustable, allowing you to adjust the seat forward and backward to find the right position for your height if you are anywhere between 5 to 6’4″ tall. This feature makes the R92 one of the best home recumbent exercise bikes.
The Sole R92 recumbent bike is suitable for residential use and can accommodate up to 300 lbs of user weight. The bike includes two large transport wheels in front and a lift handle at the back for easy transportation. It also requires electricity during the workout, and an adapter is included.
In summary, the Sole R92 is a high-quality and comfortable recumbent exercise bike suitable for users of all fitness levels. It is an affordable option compared to other models from the same brand, making it a top-rated recumbent exercise bike that provides good value for money. Sole Fitness is a top-rated brand known for manufacturing high-quality recumbent exercise bikes, making the R92 a recommended choice for the elderly who want optimal backrest comfort.
- Comfortable and unique durable construction with a 300 lb user weight capacity.
- Lifetime frame and 3-year parts, and 1-year labor warranty with US-based support.
- Forward and backward adjustable seat with lumbar support for users between 5 – 6.4 height.
- Low-maintenance quiet belt drive with 20 levels of electronic magnetic resistance system.
- Backlit 9-inch LCD console with Bluetooth connection capability, speakers, cooling fan, and tablet holder.
- Step-through frame which is suitable for everyone including novices, seniors, and those on recovery.
- The flywheel is only 20 lbs, which is provides a decent challenge for advanced users.
- Chest strap heart rate monitor included and pulse sensors are perfect angles for comfortable grip.
- The backrest is fixed and not height or angle adjustable, which may not be suitable for all users.
- The seat may not be suitable for users with prostate problems without purchasing an extra large gel.
- Fewer preset programs than competitors like Nautilus R618 and Schwinn 270 exercise recumbent bikes.
- The quality of the speakers is not great, and the cooling fan is slow and blows a very gentle breeze.
- There is no resistance controls on the handlebars for a quick resistance change.
- There are only 2 user profiles, not 4 like the Nautilus R618 recumbent machine.
How Sole R92 Evolved From the Previous Sole LCR Model
As I said earlier in this review and comparison article, if you’re in the market for a high-quality recumbent exercise bike, Sole Fitness offers two great options made in Taiwan: the R92 and the LCR. While the R92 is less expensive than the LCR model, it still provides an exceptional workout experience with a range of features that are designed to help you achieve their fitness goals.
One notable improvement in both models is the addition of new workout programs, including Manual, Hill, Fat Burn, Cardio, Strength, HIIT, and 2 Heart Rate Program. With the ability to create two profiles on the bike, users can easily switch between different workout programs without having to manually adjust the settings every time. The 3-piece cranks are also a nice improvement over Schwinn’s 1-piece cranks, providing users with a more durable and long-lasting machine.
The R92 and the LCR Sole recumbent exercise bikes also include a heart rate chest strap, eliminating the need for you to constantly hold the pulse sensor grips. But if you don’t like to wear heart rate straps, you can use pulse sensors. The grips are built at a comfortable angle, making them easier to hold than the pulse sensors on the Schwinn model. Additionally, the grips are located above the seat rather than below it, making it more convenient for users with average or shorter arms to reach them.
While the LCR model offers more resistance levels and a longer warranty, the R92 model still provides a great workout experience with 20 electronic magnetic resistance levels and a 3-year warranty on all parts and 1-year labor. The R92 model is also slightly lighter, making it easier to move and store when not in use.
In terms of quality, both the R92 and LCR models are among the highest quality recumbent exercise bikes available on the market. They both feature a step-through frame design for easy access, self-adjusting pedals with straps, Bluetooth connectivity, cooling fans, tablet holders, USB charging ports, bottle holders, and speakers. They also support various applications such as Sole, Zwift, and Kinomap via QZ.
Overall, the Sole Fitness R92 recumbent exercise bike provides an exceptional workout experience with a range of features. It’s a little heavy and might scratch your floor if you don’t use a floor exercise mat under the bike but other than that it’s a good deal. It has several workout programs, a comfortable design, and durable construction so it’s a great choice for anyone looking for a high-quality recumbent exercise bike at an affordable price. But if you can afford to spend more money, the Sole LCR is the best choice.
|Features||Sole R92||Sole LCR|
|Resistance||20 electronic magnetic levels||40 electronic magnetic levels|
|Warranty||3 Yrs on all parts, and 1 Yr Labor||5 Yrs on all parts, and 2 Yrs Labor|
|Flywheel||20 Lbs||31 Lbs|
|Support||5′ to 6’4″ | 300 Lbs||5’3″ to 6’5″ | 350 Lbs|
|Console||9.0″ LCD||10″ LCD (TFD)|
|Weight||134 Lbs (H 50″ W 30” L 57″)||145 Lbs (H 50″ W 30” L 57″)|
|Seat||Foam cushion standard size||Foam cushion large size (more comfortable)|
|Backrest||Foam cushion standard size||Foam cushion large size (more comfortable)|
|Pedals||Self-adjusting with straps (3-piece cranks)||Self-adjusting with straps (3-piece cranks)|
|Extras||Cooling fan, tablet holder, 2 bottle holders, and speakers.||Cooling fan, tablet holder, 2 bottle holders, and speakers.|
|Applications||Sole (Zwift and Kinomap via QZ)||Sole (Zwift and Kinomap via QZ)|
|Programs||10 (6 standards, 2 custom, and 2 HR)||10 (6 standards, 2 custom, and 2 HR)|
NordicTrack VR21 Recumbent Exercise Bike
As a world-leading fitness equipment manufacturer, NordicTrack produces high-quality and affordable exercise equipment, including the NordicTrack Commercial VR21 Recumbent Exercise Bike. In this review, I will cover all the important features of this mid-level recumbent bike and how it compares to other options on the market.
The NordicTrack VR21 is a great option for those looking for a comfortable and efficient exercise bike. The bike comes with a 5-inch backlit LCD display that provides all the important workout data you need, including heart rate, rpm, speed, time, distance, and resistance.
This exercise recumbent bike also has 32 preset programs, including four heart rate control programs, to keep you on target with your workout goals.
The NordicTrack VR21 features iFit connectivity through IP address, which allows you to connect to the iFit application or other apps like Zwift and Kinomap via the QZ bridge app.
For Zwift and Kinomap connectivity, you need to contact the developer of the QZ application (Roberto Viola) and send him the NRF screenshots of the bike’s wireless protocol so he can add the machine to the QZ application.
Once the recumbent machine is added to the QZ, you will be able to transmit workouts to QZ app and from the QZ app send the workouts to the application of your choice.
Otherwise, you can just stick with iFit which is a great application for indoor cycling exercise bikes. For $180 per year, you will have access to cycling classes including studio and scenic rides.
When you start pedaling, it gives you the prompt to go to iFit.com and activate your subscription but if you keep the “iFit” button on the right side of the console for 20 seconds, it will bypass the prompt and you can use the bike without any paid membership.
The computer also features MP3 input to allow you to connect your device and listen to your favorite music through the built-in speakers on the machine. There is also a 2-speed fan right below the console to keep you fresh during the cardio workout.
Additionally, the bike has an MP3 input to connect your device to the built-in speakers on the machine, as well as a 2-speed fan to keep you cool during your workout.
The exercise recumbent bike also has a 23-lb flywheel and 25 levels of magnetic resistance, which are electronically adjustable for ease of use.
The seat on the NordicTrack VR21 is a little firm compared to 3G elite recumbent, but it adjusts forward and backward easily without requiring you to get off the bike.
The backrest is vented and mesh, which helps to prevent overheating or excessive sweating during summer rides. The bike also features adjustable foot levelers and pedals with adjustable straps to keep your feet securely in place.
The NordicTrack VR21 does not have a high-end touchscreen like the NordicTrack R35, but it is still a great mid-level option. The bike is also not recommended for users under 5’3″ or over 6’6″.
It has 25 levels of magnetic resistance which is electronically adjustable so you don’t need to twist a knob to change intensity. But unfortunately, it doesn’t have resistance controls on the handlebars like Nautilus R618 does.
The frame is made of durable steel and can support up to 350 lb user weight which is 100 lb more than the Schwinn and Nautilus recumbent exercise machines.
Overall, I think that the NordicTrack VR21 is an excellent mid-level recumbent exercise bike for seniors and other users. However, I do not recommend it at its current price of $1,299, as I believe it is overpriced.
There are other options on the market, such as the Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bike and the Nautilus R618, that offer similar features for a more reasonable price.
In comparison to the NordicTrack VR21, the Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bike and the Nautilus R618 are both great options for those looking for a recumbent exercise bike in this price range. The Schwinn 230 features a comfortable seat and 20 resistance levels, while the Nautilus R618 has 29 programs, a 30-lb flywheel, and Bluetooth connectivity.
A few things that I liked were the adjustable foot levelers and pedals with adjustable straps, as well as the vented and mesh backrest. However, I found the seat to be a little firm and not as comfortable as some other options such as 3G and Nautilus on the market.
I tested the NordicTrack VR21 by using it for a series of indoor cycling workouts. I appreciated the ease of adjusting the seat and the pedals, as well as the variety of workout programs available. In summary, the NordicTrack VR21 is a great mid-level recumbent exercise bike with iFit connectivity but as long as it is around $700 to $800 price range, not its current $1299 price.
- Comfortable and efficient recumbent exercise bike with adjustable seat and pedals.
- 5-inch backlit LCD display provides important workout data, including heart rate, rpm, speed, time, distance, and resistance.
- 32 preset programs, including four heart rate control programs, to help you reach your workout goals.
- iFit connectivity through IP address allows you to connect to iFit application or other apps like Zwift and Kinomap via the QZ bridge app.
- MP3 input and built-in speakers to listen to music plus 2-speed cooling fans to keep you cool during longer summer rides.
- 23-lb flywheel and 25 levels of magnetic resistance that are electronically adjustable.
- Vented and mesh backrest like Nautilus R618 to prevent overheating.
- Adjustable foot levelers and pedals with adjustable straps to keep your feet secure.
- Durable steel frame that can support up to 350 lb user weight, which is more than other recumbent exercise machines in this guide.
- Expensive price of $1299 compared to other similar options on the market.
- No resistance controls on the handlebars like the Nautilus R618 has.
- Firm seat compared to some other options on the market.
- Not recommended for users under 5’3″ or over 6’6″ tall.
- Handlebars are a little low and hard to grip for those with shorter arms.
How Nordictrack VR21 Evolved From the Previous Model
As someone who has used both the Nordictrack VR21 and Nordictrack R35 recumbent exercise bikes, I am going to share my personal experiences and observations about their similarities and differences.
One of the most significant similarities between these two machines is that they are both recumbent exercise bikes with step-through frames, standard pedals, and three-piece cranks. They also have forward and backward sliding seat adjustments to accommodate users of various heights.
Both machines have electronic magnetic resistance systems which is near silent, but the R35 offers one more level of resistance than the VR21, with 26 levels compared to the VR21’s 25. The R35 also has resistance controls on the grips next to the seat, while the VR21 does not. So, it’s easier to change resistance on R34 because you can do it while leaning backward and pedaling.
Another key difference between these two machines is their consoles. The VR21 has a 5-inch LCD screen with a Bluetooth connection, while the R35 has a larger 14-inch HD touchscreen with WiFi connection. Both consoles have angle adjustable settings which help to have a better view of the console.
The VR21 also comes with 32 built-in programs on board, whereas the R35 has none which is mainly because the company wants you to subscribe to iFit application so they can make more money which I think is wrong.
The R35 has two bottle holders on both sides of the seat where I normally used one to keep my phone and the other to keep my water, while the VR21 only has one and it’s below the console which is not an ideal location.
The seat on the R35 is also different from the VR21, with a grippy cushioned design instead of the flat cushioned seat on the VR21. Although the R35 is the superior model, it does lack grips on the sides of the console, which are present on the VR21. So it’s not really easy to mount and dismount if you have knee issues because there is nothing to hold on to.
Finally, the price is another significant difference between the two recumbent exercise bikes, with the R35 being more expensive than the VR21. The VR21 costs $1299, while the R34 costs $1499.
In summary, both the Nordictrack VR21 and R35 recumbent exercise bikes have many similarities, such as their weight capacity, frame warranty, and sliding seat adjustments.
However, the R35 has several additional features, such as a larger touchscreen console, better speakers, and easy-to-reach resistance controls on the grips. But if you want to connect this indoor exercise bike to cycling applications outside iFit, you need to hack the Nordictrack console. Before doing that, I suggest you contact the QZ application developer to see if this specific Nordictrack exercise bike still needs hacking because you might be able to connect the bike to QZ and other apps via bike’s IP address.
On the other hand, the VR21 is more affordable and has grips on the sides of the console and it has Bluetooth connection so you can use the QZ application as a bridge to connect the machine to Zwift and Kinomap apps. I hope it helps when you are deciding which Nordictrack recumbent exercise bike to choose.
|Features||Nordictrack VR21||Nordictrack R34|
|Resistance||25 levels of electronic magnetic||26 levels of electronic magnetic|
|Grips||Yes, grips on both sides of the console||No grips on the sides of the console|
|Controls||No resistance controls on the grips next to the seat||With resistance controls on the grips next to the seat|
|Programs||32 built-in programs||None|
|Seat||Flat cushioned||Grippy cushioned|
|Holders||1 bottle holder||2 bottle holders|
|Pedals||Standard pedals and 3-piece cranks||Standard pedals and 3-piece cranks|
|Console||5″ LCD (adjustable)||14″ HD touchscreen (adjustable)|
|Adjustment||Forward and backward (sliding)||Forward and backward (sliding)|
|Applications||iFit (other apps via QZ)||iFit (other apps require hacking)|
|Flywheel||23 Lbs||20 Lbs|
|Weight||149 pounds (52″ H x 22″ W x 59″ L)||190 pounds (53″ H x 23″ W x 68″ L)|
|Support||5’3″ to 6’6″ | 350 Lbs||5’2″ to 6’7″ | 350 Lbs|
|Warranty||2-Yrs parts and 1-Yr labor||2-Yrs parts and 1-Yr labor|
Sunny SF-RB4850 Recumbent Exercise Bike
As someone who has had the pleasure of using the Sunny Health and Fitness SF-RB4850 recumbent exercise bike, I can say that it is truly one of the best exercise recumbent bikes available under $500. I was initially drawn to this bike because of its compact design, and the fact that it comes equipped with a tablet holder. As someone who likes to catch up on shows while exercising, this feature was a must-have for me.
One of the things that I appreciated the most about this recumbent exercise bike was the ease of adjusting the seat. Unlike other cheap recumbent exercise bikes that require you to get off the bike and kneel on the floor to adjust the seat, the SF-RB4850 recumbent bike has a lever handle that allows you to easily slide the seat to your desired position without having to dismount the bike. This is especially useful for households with multiple people of different sizes who want to use the bike.
In terms of resistance levels, this exercise bike has 16 levels of computerized magnetic resistance, which is a great feature. You can set preset programs that will automatically adjust the resistance for you. While I would have loved it if the bike had resistance controls on the handlebars like the Nautilus R618, it’s not a dealbreaker for the price.
The console on this bike is also quite impressive compared to other Sunny Health and Fitness recumbent exercise bikes. It has a 5×3″ LCD screen that lights up so you can see your workouts even if the room is dark.
There are 12 preset workouts, and you can cycle through manual, user-customizable, target heart rate, and wattage workout modes to test your cycling stamina. The console does lack in bells and whistles such as speakers, charging ports, and cooling fans, but that’s to be expected at this price point.
One thing to note is that this specific model of the Sunny recumbent bike doesn’t have Bluetooth, application, or chest strap compatibility. However, there is a smart version of this exact recumbent exercise bike (SF-RB4850 SMART) that has these features. It costs an additional $150, so you would be paying $500 instead of $350. In my opinion, whether or not the Bluetooth technology is worth the extra cost depends on how important app connectivity and Bluetooth are to you.
The SF-RB4850 has four handlebars, two in front and two on the sides of the seat for better stability during an intense workout. The front handlebars are fixed and come in handy when getting on or off the bike. The side handles feature heart rate sensors to allow you to track your heart rate on the screen. You can also track calories, speed, watt, resistance, and pulse.
It does have some drawbacks that you should knob. For instance, the quality of the pedals is not great especially compared to Sole and 3G recumbent exercise bikes. Also, its crank system is 1-piece which is not as durable or easy to maintain as 3-piece crank systems seen on top-notch recumbent exercise bikes I reviewed for this article.
The 6.6-pound weight of the flywheel is also not impressive either especially when you compare it to Nautilus which has a 30-lb flywheel. So, you can’t expect to get the same momentum and smooth pedaling experience as you would on Sole R92 or Nautilus R618.
Overall, I would recommend the Sunny Health and Fitness SF-RB4850 recumbent exercise bike for those who can’t afford to spend more than $300 to $400. While it may not have all the features of more expensive models, it is one of the best recumbent exercise bikes in its price range.
- 16 electronically adjustable magnetic resistance levels with belt drive for a smooth and quiet system.
- 12 different preset workout programs including heart rate programs allow for a wide variety of workouts.
- Console allows for tracking of a good variety of workout statistics including watt, speed, calories, and distance.
- Bonus tablet holder to watch a movie or program and a water bottle holder to stay hydrated.
- Large padded seat and mesh backrest is actually pretty comfortable.
- Sturdy frame with 300 lb weight limit and wide range adjustment for to fit most users.
- Metal transport handle and wheels allow for easy transportation around the home.
- Affordable price compared to other recumbent exercise bikes with similar features.
- Lower quality drive mechanism compared to Schwinn and Nautilus.
- 1-piece cranks are always inferior as they are harder to maintain.
- No online or Bluetooth connectivity for heart rate chest straps.
- No additional bonus features like USB plugs, speakers or cooling fans
- Poor warranty package that is put on every SHF recumbent exercise bike.
- Light flywheel and no resistance controls on the handlebars for easy access.
- Console doesn’t adjust or tilt for better viewing for shorter users.
How SF-RB4850 Evolved From the Previous Model
After trying and reviewing both the Sunny SF-RB4850 and Sunny SF-RB4905 recumbent exercise bikes, I can confidently say that the SF-RB4850 has evolved significantly from the basic model, the SF-RB4905.
One of the major improvements in the SF-RB4850 is its resistance system. It has 16 levels of electronic magnetic resistance, which provides smoother and more precise resistance adjustments than the SF-RB4905’s manual magnetic system with only 8 levels. The 4850 also has 12 preset programs that can help vary your workout and keep you motivated, whereas the SF-RB4905 has no programs at all.
The SF-RB4850 also features an ergonomically designed seat with extra padding and wider surface (16.5″W x 12.5″L) and a breathable mesh backrest, which makes for a more comfortable and cooler workout than the SF-RB4905’s basic design with minimal padding (11″ W x 15″ L) and a non-breathable backrest with minimum support.
The SF-RB4850’s console also has a larger 5×3″ backlit screen that displays more stats, including watt, resistance, calories, pulse, speed, time, and distance. In contrast, the SF-RB4905 only has a small 2×1.5″ dark screen that displays fewer stats, including calories, pulse, speed, time, and distance.
Additionally, the SF-RB4850 can support up to 300 lbs and is designed for users between 4’10” to 6’4″, while the SF-RB4905 can only support up to 250 lbs and is designed for users between 5’2″ to 6’1″. So, maybe not all members of your family can fit the Sunny SF-RB4905.
However, both models have a step-through frame design, 1-piece crank, and similar warranties of 3 years for the frame and 180 days for parts which is horrible. The minimum Sunny could do was offering 1-year parts warranty as every other recumbent exercise bike manufacturer is doing for recumbent machines at this price point.
Overall, if you’re looking for a good value recumbent exercise bike and can afford to spend a little more, I would suggest the Nautilus recumbent machines. However, if you’re choosing between the Sunny SF-RB4850 and Sunny SF-RB4905, the SF-RB4850’s upgrades in resistance, seat and backrest design, console features, and user support make it a better choice for a more comfortable and versatile workout experience.
|Features||Sunny SF-RB 4850||Sunny SF-RB 4905|
|Resistance||16 Levels of electronic magnetic||8 Levels of manual magnetic|
|Programs||12 Preset programs||None|
|Seat||Ergonomic wider seat with 3″ foam padding (16.5″W x 12.5″L)||Basic smaller seat with 2″ padding (11″W x 15″L)|
|Backrest||Breathable mesh backrest||Basic padded backrest (not mesh)|
|Console||5×3″ backlit screen||2×1.5″ dark screen|
|Stats||Watt, resistance, calories, pulse, speed, time, distance.||Calories, pulse, speed, time, distance.|
|Support||300 Lbs | 4’10” to 6’4″||250 Lbs | 5’2″ to 6’1″|
|Cranks||1-piece crank||1-piece crank|
|Flywheel||6.6 Lbs||5 Lbs|
|Warranty||3-Ys frame and 180 Days parts||3-Ys frame and 180 Days parts|
Exerpeutic 900XL Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Exerpeutic 900XL is a compact heavy-duty long-lasting and budget recumbent bike, no question about that. If it weren’t lacking in some of the bells and whistles such as a cup holder, cooling fans, iPod input, speakers, and preset workouts, it would have been placed way above the 8th position in the best recumbent bikes review.
However, if these features are important to you, you can add an extra 200 Dollars and purchase our favorite budget recumbent bike, the Nautilus R616. The Exerpeutic recumbent bike is more for entry levels, seniors, and those in recovery and not for elite exercisers. This budget recumbent bike features 8 magnetic resistance levels easily adjustable.
While there are only 8 levels of tension on the Exerpeutic recumbent exercise bike, the resistance power is enough to become challenging after a few minutes of recumbent exercise. The flywheel weight is not available but the 300-lb user weight support indicates a good user weight. The frame is very well constructed using durable steel.
There are two sets of handlebars, one in front and one along the seat to keep you firm and stable on the bike during use. There is also a set of pulse sensors built-in in the hand grips to allow you to track your heart rate. The pedals feature adjustable straps to keep your feet firm at all levels of exercise. While the console is very basic and not blue back-lit, it displays the necessary feedback in a big size and easy to read. You can track your distance, calories burned, time, speed, scan, and heart rate.
This compact budget recumbent bike also features a forward & backward adjustable seat. The seat is soft, cushioned and larger than most recumbent bikes in this price range. The backrest is also padded and while it’s not adjustable, it has a fixed angle for extra comfort. What’s not really great about the seat is the adjustment.
The user has to get off the bike to loosen 3 different knobs to be able to slide the seat. It would have been much easier if they made one lever instead of all these knobs. If multiple users want to use this machine and they constantly need to adjust the seat for their height, you might want to consider a recumbent bike with lever adjustment.
This budget recumbent bike also comes with two transport wheels for easy portability. What we don’t like about the Exerputic recumbent bike is the lack of a tablet holder and water bottle holder. You also don’t have the option to use the chest strap that comes to monitor your heart or plug in your MP3 or iPod.
To run the console you need two AA batteries and no cord. Overall it’s one of the best recumbent exercise bikes for those who are tight on budget and want something light to store after use. And compared to other recumbent bike prices, the Exerpeutic is a really cheap recumbent bike.
- Affordable price compared to similar recumbents from other brands I tried.
- Its less bulky and lighter weight makes it easier to move and assemble the machine quickly.
- Well-designed handlebars are easy to hold even for those with shorter arms.
- Tablet holder, so you can watch a movie or something when cycling.
- Easy seat sliding adjustment system which is hard to get these days with budget recumbent exercise bikes.
- Overall good value for the money.
- Resistance is only manually adjustable via twisting the knob.
- Screen is not backlit and I find it hard to see my progress in the dark.
- Lower quality and less durability than Nautilus or Schwinn recumbent bikes.
- No preset programs or heart rate programs.
- Light flywheel does not have as much momentum as you would get from other bikes I reviewed in this article.
- Backrest is fixed and it has a short warranty.
How Exerpeutic 900XL Evolved From the Previous Model 400XL
As someone who has used both the Exerpeutic 900XL and 400XL recumbent exercise bikes, I would highly recommend going for the former. While both models offer the same 8-level manual magnetic resistance and basic console stats, the 900XL has several features that make it a better investment.
One of the most significant improvements is the seat. The 900XL has an easy adjustment mechanism, and the cushion surface is thicker and wider, measuring 16″ W x 12.5″ L x 3″ D. This makes for a more comfortable experience, especially for longer workouts. On the other hand, the 400XL’s seat has a basic adjustment mechanism and a smaller foam cushion surface (15″ W x 11″ L x 2″ D).
Another noticeable difference is the frame design. The 900XL has a step-through design, making it easier to mount and dismount, while the 400XL has a step-over design that can be more challenging to maneuver for some users.
Additionally, the 900XL is equipped with a tablet holder, which is absent in the 400XL. This feature is handy for those who prefer to watch movies or stream their favorite TV shows while exercising. The 900XL also has a slightly heavier flywheel (7-lbs) than the 400XL (5-lbs), providing a smoother ride.
In terms of dimensions, the 900XL takes up more space and is heavier than the 400XL. It measures 54″ L x 22″ W x 34″ H and weighs 74 lbs, whereas the 400XL measures 40″ L x 20″ W x 54″ H and weighs only 39 lbs. However, the 400XL can be folded, making it more convenient to store in smaller spaces.
Both models come with the same 1-year frame and 90-day parts warranty which is a poor warranty similar to Sunny recumbent machine, but the 900XL has a few extra features that the 400XL lacks. For instance, it has a more extensive and thicker seat, a tablet holder, and a step-through frame design, making it easier to mount and dismount. These improvements make the 900XL worth the extra cost, in my opinion.
|Features||Exerpeutic 900XL||Exerpeutic 400XL|
|Resistance||8-Level manual magnetic (not auto resistance)||8-Level manual magnetic (not auto resistance)|
|Programs||None (no heart rate or fat burn or hill climb program)||None (no heart rate or fat burn or hill climb program)|
|Seat||Easy adjustment and a thicker and wider foam cushion surface (16″ W x 12.5″ L x 3″ D)||Basic adjustment and a smaller foam cushion surface (15″ W x 11″ L x 2″ D)|
|Shelf||A tablet holder included||None|
|Frame||Step-through (easier to mount and dismount)||Step-over (more difficult to mount and dismount)|
|Support||5’1 to 6’2″ | 300 Lbs||5′ to 6′ | 300 Lbs|
|Dimensions||54″ L x 22″ W x 34″ H. | 74 lbs (takes more space and is harder to move)||40″ L x 20″ W x 54″ H. | 39 lbs (takes less space and is easier to move)|
|Console||3×2″ dark screen (hard to see)||3×2″ dark screen (hard to see)|
|Stats||Distance, calories, time, speed, and heart rate||Distance, calories, time, speed, and heart rate|
|Warranty||1-Year frame and 90 days parts||1-Year frame and 90 days parts|
|Extras||No speakers, cooling fan, or charging port||No speakers, cooling fan, or charging port|
Recumbent Bikes – Buying Guide:
What features to expect from the best recumbent bike for home use depends on how much you are investing. However, there are a few things that are important to have in a recumbent exercise bike.
Adjustable seat: Fore/Aft adjustable cushioned, soft, and large seat, preferably with an adjustment lever rather than a knob. The wider the surface and thicker the cushioned the more comfortable it can be. A layer of “air soft” or gel cushion would be also great. There are cases in which good recumbent exercise bikes still might give you a little bit of saddle sore. If that happens to you, I suggest you read my tips on how to make the recumbent exercise bike seat more comfortable.
Tilt-adjustable backrest: Adjustable backrest, preferably Airflow mesh to keep you cool during a longer period of exercise. Try to avoid flat straight backrests as they are not supportive or even ergonomic. One of those examples are the Exerpuetic recumbent exercise that I tried.
Durable pedal and cranks: Look for larger pedals with nonslippery surfaces and a self-adjusting (aka self-balancing) system. Also, opt for recumbent exercise bikes that have 3-piece cranks like Sole R94 instead of 1-piece cranks like Sunny recumbent. A 3-piece cranks system is more durable and easier to maintain in case you need to change a bearing because you don’t need to dismantle the whole drive system. You can just open the crank arm that requires maintenance.
Backlit console: While many people don’t consider the entertainment options an important factor, I always find it a very important factor for encouraging and ultimately getting better results. I suggest you look for recumbent exercise bikes that have high-contrast consoles so you can see your progress easily. The more data the console provides, the better you can understand where you need to improve further. RPM, Speed, resistance, watt, calories burned, and heart rate metrics are very important.
App connectivity: One of the keys to ride a recumbent exercise bike is to be able to connect the machines to indoor cycling applications like Zwift and Kinomap so you can either do games or just do scenic rides. But unfortunately, even some of the best recumbent exercise bikes I have tried didn’t have the necessary wireless protocol to allow app connectivity. There are a handful of recumbent exercise bikes like Sole LCR/R94, Nautilus R618/R616, and Nordictrack VR that have Bluetooth transmitter that allows app connection.
Programs: Preset programs are one of the most overlooked features of recumbent exercise bikes. I strongly suggest that you consider choosing a recumbent exercise bike that has at least one heart rate, one fat burn, one aerobic, and one anaerobic program. The more programs, the better it is.
Resistance: You should pay special attention to recumbent exercise bike resistance as it’s extremely important in how you experience the ride. The best type of resistance is electronically adjustable magnetic because it can also adjust automatically to keep within your desired program. For instance, if you are doing a fat burn program, only an electronically adjust magnetic resistance can automatically adjust your resistance to keep you within 90 to 110 heartbeats per minute. Manually adjustable resistance that normally uses a twisting knob like Exerpeutic 900XL can’t automatically change your resistance.
Easy access resistance controls: The best recumbent exercise bikes have resistance controls on the hand grips so when you are leaning backward, you can easily access adjust the resistance. These resistance controls have a – and + buttons on the left handlebar and on the right handlebar like Nautilus R618. They are much better than resistance knobs and those that only have controls on the console like Nordictrack VR21.
Extras: Although extras like speakers, a set of adjustable cooling fans, and tablet holders are not dealbreaker factors, can affect the overall experience of using a recumbent exercise bike. These are nice little things to have and not to have to pay for them separately. You can’t expect to get all on cheaper recumbent stationary bikes like Sunny Health and Fitness ones but on mid-range and high-end recumbent exercise bikes like Nautilus, you get them all.
Q-facto: Recumbent Q-factor/distance between the pedals is not as spin bike q-factor because of its design but still worth looking into as some manufacturers do poor designs. The narrower q-factors are always better because they add less stress to your lower body joints. I suggest you opt for recumbent exercise bikes that don’t exceed 210mm of q-factor.
Support, Warranty, and price: When considering purchasing a recumbent exercise bike, it’s also important to pay attention to support, warranty, and price. These factors are often intertwined, with higher prices often correlating with better support and warranty options like 3G recumbents. Good support means that the company you’re buying from is available to answer any questions you might have and provide assistance if needed. On the other hand, a good warranty will give you peace of mind in case something goes wrong with the bike. Of course, price is a major consideration as well, and it’s important to find a balance between affordability and quality.
Step-through frame design: With recumbent exercise bikes, another important consideration is the step-through frame design, which can make it easier and safer to get on and off the bike. This feature is particularly important for older individuals or those with mobility issues who may have trouble lifting their leg over the high central bar on traditional exercise bikes like 3G Cardio Elite. The step-through design like the one on Nautilus R618 allows you to simply walk through the frame and sit down, which can help reduce the risk of falls and make the bike more accessible for a wider range of users.
User weight and height capacity: In addition to other things that I talked about in this buying guide, two other important factors to consider when buying a recumbent exercise bike are user weight and height support. When you are done looking at everything else, it’s very important to make sure that the recumbent stationary bike you’re interested in can accommodate your height and weight, as well as anyone else in your family who might be using it in the future. If that exercise bike is not advised for your weight, it may not provide the stability and durability you need, which could lead to safety issues like breaking seat and seat posts, pedals, or even crank arms. Similarly, if the bike isn’t the right size for your height, you may find it uncomfortable to use, which could lead to a lack of motivation to continue using it. I already mentioned the height capacity of each recumbent in the comparison tablet and have also reviewed the best recumbent exercise bikes for short people.
Read recumbent bike review: last but not least we always consider checking recumbent bike reviews and consumer reports across the web to help us pick the best recumbent bicycles. Before getting into details of which recumbent exercise bike makes it to the list of the best recumbent exercise bikes in 2023, we have a little homework to do: understanding what are the detailed things to know about recumbent bikes before spending your money. If you know better what you should be looking for, making the right decision is way easier. This is why we created an article introducing the recumbent stationary bike, its benefits, and the things to know before buying this type of exercise bike.
Who should use a recumbent exercise bike?
Exercise recumbent bikes are an excellent investment for pretty much anyone looking to improve their fitness level and overall health. But some people with certain needs and fitness level will benefit and enjoy a recumbent exercise bike more than others. If you are one of the following people, there’s no reason not to give a recumbent exercise bike a try.
Individuals in recovery from injury or surgery:
As someone who once was recovering from an injury, I know that it can be challenging to find a safe and effective way to exercise. That’s why I appreciate and recommend the recumbent exercise bike, which provides a low-impact workout that’s gentle on the body compared to spin bikes, and rowing machines while still allowing you to get the exercise you need.
Elderly individuals or those with limited mobility:
If you are an older adult or someone with limited mobility, it can be tough or even impossible to use most exercise machines that are safe and comfortable. I suggest you try a recumbent exercise bike as it is built for comfort while still being able to give a good workout without putting too much stress on your joints or muscles.
People who are overweight or obese and looking to lose weight:
Often I suggest overweight or obese people who don’t have mobility issues use air exercise bikes instead of recumbent bikes. But if you are overweight and have serious heart or mobility issues, then you should probably avoid aerobic and anaerobic workouts and use a recumbent exercise bike. For sure with a recumbent bike, you burn less calories but it’s still a good cardio workout while sitting in a comfortable position. It’s not intense so it’s safer than other types of exercise bikes.
Anyone who wants to improve their cardiovascular health:
If you want to improve your cardiovascular health, you need to do regular exercise which can be done with any type of exercise bike except for folding exercise bikes. But if you want to be comfortable while doing a cardiovascular workout without putting too much stress on your body, recumbent exercise bikes are one of your best options. They are the single most comfortable among all types of exercise bikes on the market.
Individuals with back, neck, or joint pain:
As someone who experiences back, neck, or joint pain, I know that finding an exercise option that’s comfortable and gentle on my body is crucial. That’s why I appreciate the recumbent exercise bike, which provides a low-impact workout that’s easy on my joints while still allowing me to get a good workout.
Individuals with balance or coordination issues:
For whatever reason, age, surgery, illness, or anything else, if you have balance or coordination issues that you can’t stand for long without holding your hands on something, I recommend a recumbent exercise bike. They all have a set of handlebars next to the seat that provides a stable, supportive seating position that helps you maintain your balance while exercising. Normally they also have a set of handlebars on each side of the console so you can use them when setting on the saddle and when getting out of the saddle.
People who enjoy reading, watching TV, or multitasking while exercising:
If you like to read a book, watch TV, or multitask while exercising, you will probably appreciate recumbent exercise bikes because they allow you to be in a relaxed position so you can do all these things while getting a good indoor workout. I tried so many different exercise equipment and reading on an upright bike, spin bike, treadmill, elliptical, or rowing machine is almost impossible because you either need your hands to work out or you are simply not comfortable enough to read. Recumbent exercise bikes on the other hand put you in a comfortable seating position and a stable platform, so you can easily read or watch TV while pedaling away and burning some calories.
Those who want to tone their lower body muscles such as the quadriceps and calves:
If you only want to tone your lower body muscles, such as your legs and calves (not so much glutes, core, arms, chest, and shoulders), you will probably like the recumbent exercise bike, which provides a decent workout for these muscle groups. Based on workout intensity and resistance you can either pedal fast and define your muscles or pedal slower with higher resistance and add muscles and strength.
Who shouldn’t use a recumbent exercise bike?
While a recumbent exercise bike is a great option for many people, if you have certain expectations or needs, you may want to consider alternative exercise equipment. If you are one of these people, a recumbent exercise bike is probably not the best choice:
Those who want quick results:
Recumbent bikes may not be the best option for individuals who want to burn a large number of calories quickly or engage in intense anaerobic workouts. They put you in an inclined position that you can even push too hard.
Those with serious hemorrhoid issues:
Seated exercise machines like recumbent bikes may exacerbate hemorrhoid issues, so individuals with this condition may want to consider standing exercise machines like treadmills or ellipticals. You can read more about which exercises are best for hemorrhoids.
Those with serious knee problems:
The round circular motion of recumbent exercise bikes is not suitable for you if have serious knee problems. So instead of a traditional recumbent bike, I suggest you to consider one like Teeter Freestep that has linear (stepping) motion or ellipse motion or elliptical motion exercise machines.
Road bike riders and virtual cycling enthusiasts:
If you enjoy road cycling or virtual cycling on Peloton and Zwift, I suggest you opt for spin bikes over recumbent bikes, as spin bikes are more similar to road bikes and have more content intended for virtual cycling.
Anyone with limited exercise space:
If you live in a small apartment or have limited space, you may find an upright bike to be a better choice, as they take up less space and are easier to move from room to room. Recumbent exercise bikes are the longest type of exercise bikes so they take up more floor space than air bikes, spin bikes, and upright bikes.
Those who want full-body workouts:
If you’re looking for a full-body workout, using a recumbent exercise bike is not the best choice for you unless it’s a recumbent bike with arm workout. You can target many leg muscles but can’t engage the upper body muscles at all. For full-body workouts, I would suggest rowing machines, elliptical machines, and air bikes because they have pedals and handle so you can use legs and arms.
Muscles used on a recumbent exercise bike:
Before dicing to buy and use a recumbent exercise bike, you probably want to know which muscles you can target and how effectively you can target these muscles. Generally speaking, the main and only muscles that you can target with a recumbent exercise bike are your leg muscle groups.
Keep in mind that because of the fact that you can’t put much pressure on your legs while using a recumbent exercise bike, it’s a less effective leg exercise compared to using spinning bikes, rowing, squats, and sports like basketball, running or climbing.
In fact, because I know I can’t properly tune my leg by only using a recumbent bike, I often do my recumbent exercise as a warm-up for 20 minutes for the “leg day”. So, that way I don’t replace my leg exercise with recumbent exercises. With that said, here are some of the key muscle groups that can be improved:
- Your quadriceps: They are the muscles at the front of your thigh, and can be targeted with a recumbent exercise bike.
- Your hamstrings: These are the muscles at the back of your thigh that can also be worked out on a recumbent exercise bike.
- The adductor muscles: They are located on your inner thighs and are important for stability and a recumbent exercise bike can help improve these muscles and support your overall leg strength.
- Your tibialis anterior: This is the outer muscle of your shin which can also benefit from a recumbent exercise bike workout.
- Your calves: The gastrocnemius and soleus muscles in your calves are essential for walking, running, and jumping and can be improved with recumbent exercise workouts.
Muscles not used on a recumbent exercise bike:
When it comes to using recumbent exercise bikes, there are some muscles that can not be targeted at all or at least as effective as muscles on your legs. Here are some of the muscle groups that you can’t expect to improve with a traditional recumbent exercise bike.
However, if you end up buying one of the modern and bulkier recumbent ellipticals like Teeter LT3 or a recumbent arm-and-leg exercise machine like Stamina Elite, you will be able to target more than just leg muscles.
Note: The following list of muscles will not be targeted with a traditional recumbent stationary exercise bike that doesn’t have any arm pedals or handlebars.
- Core muscles: They include the abdominals and lower back muscles and may not be targeted directly on a recumbent exercise bike like you would be able to target them with specific core equipment. So, keep in mind that engaging your core will not be the primary focus with a recumbent exercise bike.
- Chest and back muscles, as well as arm and shoulder muscles: These muscle groups can not be targeted on a recumbent exercise bike because your upper body doesn’t work while using a recumbent bike. These muscles are more commonly worked out with exercises like rowing and elliptical that involve pushing, pulling, or lifting weights.
- The gluteal muscles: I know these muscles are on your legs but during recumbent exercise, your glutes don’t work out as effectively as other leg muscles. These muscles are important for hip extension and are often targeted with exercises like squats and lunges.
Benefits Of Recumbent Bikes
While giving you a cardiovascular workout similar to other indoor bikes, a recumbent bike is easy on the back and brings way less pressure on your joints and muscles.
Recumbent machines mainly workout on the lower-body muscle groups unless they have moving handlebars. Here is a list of the manuals that work with a recumbent bike: Calves, Hamstrings, Quads, Glutes, and Abs.
Featuring large seat and back support, the majority of users find a recumbent exercise bike to be more comfortable to ride compared to a traditional exercise bike such as upright bikes or spin bike. It has a step-through design and also it’s lower to the ground which makes it easier to get on and off.
Less impact on joints and back
Recumbent bikes feature a design that helps to relieve stress on your knees and hips because your body is in a comfortable seated position and you don’t need to flex much. The backrest improves your posture and takes the pressure off your back while exercising.
Pretty much everyone can use it
Using a recumbent exercise bike can be used by anyone, including those with balance issues, seniors with less flexibility, and those on recovery. The fact that recumbent bikes have large seats close to the ground makes it a practical indoor workout machine for everyone.
Effective cardiovascular exercise
Like the rest of the traditional exercise bikes, pedaling on a recumbent exercise bike is an ideal aerobic workout. Recumbent training helps improve your heart, blood circulation, and lung function, and it works with major lower body muscle groups for effective indoor exercise.
Because of the effective cardio workout that a recumbent bike provides, you can burn hundreds of calories and build lean muscle. Followed by a proper weight-loss program you can get good results using recumbent bikes. With a recumbent bike you can burn excess body fat using only your lower body. It’s also easier to read a book, watch a movie or surf the web holding a phone/tablet while doing recumbent exercises.
Fitting Your Recumbent Exercise Bike
Recumbent bikes are mainly adjustable from the seat forward and backward (sometimes up-down adjustment too). Therefore, your major adjustment is with the fore/aft slide of the seat just like fitting a car seat.
To find the best position, you need to lean back in the seat, put your feet on the pedals and let go of the adjustment lever/handle when you feel it’s comfortable.
Then, you need to pedal once and make sure that your legs don’t fully extend and also don’t fully bend. It’s important to make sure your knees don’t lock when pedaling on the recumbent exercise bike.
If you are a bit shorter than what a recumbent bike is recommended for, you can still use the machine by using a cushion behind you to sit comfortably.
Recumbent Bike vs Upright Bike and Spin Bike
Upright stationary bikes, spinning bikes, and recumbent exercise bikes provide a cardiovascular workout and help to lose weight, burn calories, and improve heart condition. Also, in terms of price, they are all pretty much the same.
However, recumbent exercise bikes are the only ones with large seats, backrests, pedals in front rather than under the seat, and a step-through design. These four features make a recumbent exercise bike different and easier to use for most people.
Spin bikes and upright exercise don’t offer backrests and are not as easy to mount and dismount but they help burn more calories and they are more compact so they take less space. Here is a comparison table I created to make it easier for you to decide which exercise bike is best for you.
|Feature||Recumbent Bikes||Upright Bikes||Spinning Bikes|
|Backrest and large seat||Yes||No||No|
|Easy to mount/dismount||Yes||No||No|
|The most comfortable||Yes||No||No|
|Burns more calories||No (up to 400 calories p/h)||Yes (up to 500 calories p/h)||Yes (up to 800 calories p/h)|
|Best for HIIT||No||Yes (good)||Yes (best)|
Bottom Line On Recumbent Bikes!
One of the most popular gyms and health club fitness equipment is the recumbent bike. Because they offer low-impact cardio exercise. And while they are used mainly for warming up in the gym, the recumbent exercise bikes can offer a good weight-loss cardio workout. Therefore, having a recumbent exercise bike at home can motivate and help you burn fat, and improve your heart rate and blood circulation.
But that’s not the only reason we like recumbent stationary bikes. These bikes are so easy to use that pretty much all your family members in all body shapes can workout on them. And if for some reason you can’t do the spin bike or weight lifting for a while, you can still work out using one of the most comfortable recumbent bikes we featured in this review.
Also, unlike some other types of workouts, it’s easy to do multiple tasks while exercising on a recumbent bike. You can stay entertained reading, working on your laptop, or watching your favorite show. Lastly, to make sure our readers get the best value recumbent exercise bike for the money, we update the top 7 recumbent stationary bike reviews list regularly.