BEST EXERCISE BIKES | NOVEMBER 2017

Many of us are constantly vowing to exercise more, and exercise bikes are a fun, convenient and economical way to get a good, cardiovascular workout. The ReviewLab team researched different types of exercise bikes to help you choose the one that best fits your needs. We delved into low impact and folding exercise bikes, those best for legs and arms, as well as the best overall and the best value. Each exercise bike in our list includes its top features, specifications and other considerations. And don’t forget to check out our buying guide below that includes some key considerations and price breakdown. Read more about our methodology.

Best Overall

92

The ProGear 100S Exercise Bike is our top pick with its long list of features, including some extras not found on many other models such as four-way seat adjustment (forward/back and up/down) and double direction pedaling.

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90
RUNNER-UP

The FitDesk 2.0 Exercise Bike is another great choice with its unique desktop, which allows you to work, read or surf the Web during your workout. The massage rollers add to your comfort, and you can adjust the bike to use as an upright or recumbent style.

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Best Value

88

Buying an exercise bike doesn’t have to break your bank, and the Marcy Upright Mag Bike is a great choice with extra features typically found on higher priced models. And though compact in size, this bike will accommodate people who weigh up to 300 pounds.

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90
RUNNER-UP

The low price and excellent features, including different resistance levels and seat positions that let you adjust the bike to your exercise needs, make the Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycling Bike a great choice whether you’re shopping on a budget or simply looking for a reliable exercise bike.

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Exercise Bikes BUYING GUIDE

  • KEY CONSIDERATIONS

    Your Fitness Level and Workout Goals

    Your health and fitness level, what physical limitations you may have and what you want to achieve in your workout can help determine which exercise bike is right for you. Low impact, or recumbent, bikes are a good choice for all fitness levels, including seniors, people with bad knees or arthritis, or if you simply want less stress on your joints or lower back. Recumbent exercise bikes typically have larger, more comfortable seats. These exercise bikes will work the muscles in your thighs and gluteus and your hip flexors. With upright bikes, besides working your legs and gluteus, your abdominal muscles and upper arms and shoulders also get a workout. An upright exercise bike can be a good choice if you’re an outdoor bicyclist since you use the same muscles for both bikes.

    Size of Bike

    You should consider the size of the bike for two reasons. First, make sure you have the space for the type of exercise bike you’re considering. Low impact, or recumbent, models typically need the most room; uprights take up less space; and folding exercise bikes are the best option if you have a small house or apartment. Second, you need to check that the bike is the right size for your body type. Some bikes have weight limitations. Others may not accommodate taller people.

    Basic or Advanced Workout Features

    You should also decide what features you want on your exercise bike. Most, but not all, models include some type of display showing calories burned, distance, time and speed. Some exercise bikes include heart pulse sensors that help keep you at your targeted heart rate. Resistance adjustment is also common, but some models offer more levels than others. Advanced features may include a USB charging port and MP3 input so you can listen to music during your workout. The exercise bike may have preset exercise programs, multiple user setup and the ability to upload your workout progress to fitness tracking apps.

  • PRICE BREAKDOWN

    Exercise bikes range from $100 to $2,000. But you can find a good bike of any style that fits your needs for under $500. Exercise bikes in the $100 to $200 range can include resistance adjustment and a display that tracks time, distance, speed, and calories burned. For $300 to $500, the bikes may include such advanced features as preset exercise programs or an MP3 input.

FULL product reviews

We research hundreds of products in order to bring you a final, unbiased list of the very best. We also use a proprietary algorithm to score each product in terms of quality, value, and brand reputation. These subscores are then weighted to calculate our overall scores. Read more about how we calculate our scores.

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Best Overall

TOP PICK

ProGear 100S Exercise Bike

The ProGear 100S is loaded with features that make this upright model ReviewLab’s top choice in exercise bikes. Adjustments to pedaling resistance will allow you to get a great, cardiovascular workout regardless of your fitness level. And the LCD monitor will track your progress, including your pulse rate. This bike is a convenient size with wheels for easy transportation, and it will accommodate users up to 250 pounds and a height of 6’2”. Many users state how easy this exercise bike is to assemble, and several others write about its good quality.

  • 92overall
  • 93quality
  • 90value
  • 88brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Workout features track your progress. The ProGear 100S Exercise Bike includes an LCD monitor that tracks the calories you burn and the distance, time and speed you pedal. Heart pulse sensors monitor your pulse rate so you’re sure to stay in your target heart rate zone. The pulse rate is also displayed on the monitor.
  • Bike design helps you achieve your workout goals. No matter what your fitness level is, you can achieve your goals with the adjustable features on the ProGear 100S Exercise Bike. Many reviewers say they get a great cardiovascular workout on this model. The easy dial tension adjustment can increase or decrease your pedaling resistance. For outdoor bicyclists, this exercise bike is chain driven to simulate road cycling. The double direction pedaling allows you to work your leg muscles differently and diversify your workout. And the toe cages allow you to pedal with an extra forward thrust, and they make stand-up pedaling easier.
  • Size and weight and height capacity. The ProGear 100S upright exercise bike, measuring 40” long x 22” wide x 46” high, takes up a relatively small amount of space and includes wheels for easy transportation to and from rooms or closets. This exercise bike will accommodate a person weighing up to 250 pounds. And with the four-way seat adjustment—forward/backward and up/down—you can set the seat so you’re the proper distance from the pedals depending on your height. The recommended height range is 5’1” to 6’2”.

Other Considerations

  • Noisy at high speeds. A few reviewers write that the bike can be noisy when pedaling at high speeds.
RUNNER UP

FitDesk 2.0 Desk Exercise Bike with Massage Bar

The FitDesk 2.0 Exercise Bike’s unique built-in desktop lets you get a good cardiovascular workout while working on your laptop or other device. The non-skid surface keeps the computer in place, and the massage rollers make typing more comfortable. With other features that enhance your workout, such as eight-level magnetic resistance, a digital display to track your workout progress and resistance bands for arm workout, the FitDesk 2.0 is an all-around great choice in an exercise bike.

  • 90overall
  • 93quality
  • 70value
  • 86brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Unique desk feature. The FitDesk Exercise Bike includes a non-skid desktop, allowing you to use your laptop or other device to read, surf the web or finish an important report all while getting a good workout. The desk also has a drawer that’s easily accessible while exercising, and massage rollers add an ergonomic feature to make typing comfortable and help you avoid carpal tunnel syndrome. Some users note that because of the desk feature, they’re exercising more since they can work and exercise at the same time.
  • Adjusts to upright or recumbent style; foldable. Usually when buying an exercise bike, you have to choose between an upright or recumbent style. With the FitDesk model, that choice is built into the design with an adjustable seat back and extender that transforms the bike from an upright to a recumbent, and vice versa. The recumbent style gives you a good cardiovascular workout while putting less stress on your joints and lower back, making that adjustment a great choice if you have bad knees, arthritis or other physical limitations. The upright adjustment simulates outdoor bikes and also works your abdomen and upper body. And for convenience, this exercise bike has wheels for easy transport and folds to a 16 x 28 inch footprint.
  • Features that help you achieve your workout goals. The FitDesk 2.0 Exercise Bike has magnetic resistance for a smooth pedaling motion, also a plus when using the desk feature to keep it steady. You can easily adjust the eight resistance levels with the control knob that’s mounted on the front of the bike frame. A digital display tracks your time, distance in miles and calories burned. This exercise bike also comes with integrated resistance bands for an upper body workout.

Other Considerations

  • Display not always visible. A few reviewers state that the cover of their open laptop blocks the digital display.

Best Value

TOP PICK

Marcy Upright Mag Bike

You don’t need to spend a lot to get a good exercise bike, and the Marcy Upright Mag Bike is a great choice for those watching their budget. Included on this model are features typically found on higher priced exercise bikes such as eight levels of preset resistance and a user-friendly computer that displays your workout progress. These features plus a height-adjustable seat, adjustable foot straps and a weight capacity of 300 pounds make the Marcy a great buy for most body types and fitness levels.

  • 88overall
  • 88quality
  • 92value
  • 84brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Achieve your workout goals at a reasonable price. The Marcy Upright Mag Bike includes many features that aren’t included on many other lower priced exercise bikes. This bike is designed with a magnetic resistance system which provides smooth, quiet pedaling. There are eight levels of preset resistance that allow you to get a good cardiovascular workout no matter what your fitness level is. The monitor tracks your workout by displaying the time, distance and speed you pedal, as well as the calories you burn.
  • Easy and comfortable to use. The Marcy Upright Mag Bike includes easy-to-use features such as the large monitor and user-friendly computer interface. The bike also includes a height-adjustable seat, padded hand grips and counterbalanced pedals with adjustable foot straps. Many users comment on how comfortable this exercise bike is to ride.
  • Convenient size with high weight capacity. This exercise bike measures only 31.5” long x 18 inches wide x 48.75” high, making it convenient to place in your home or apartment or to store in a closet. The bike weighs 43 pounds and includes wheels for easy transport. The weight capacity for this bike is 300 pounds, higher than many other bikes on the market.

Other Considerations

  • Pedaling area is small. One reviewer commented that the pedaling area is tight, giving you a small circle of movement.
RUNNER UP

Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycling Bike

The Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycling Bike is another great low-cost choice in exercise bikes with features such as adjustable resistance and an LCD display to track your workout progress. This bike also has ergonomic features, including a road bike style seat, to make your ride more comfortable. Many users agree that the workmanship of this bike is of good quality, and Sunny Health & Fitness offers a three-year limited warranty.

  • 90overall
  • 90quality
  • 95value
  • 85brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Reasonably priced with great features. A simple twist of the knob that’s mounted to the front bike frame will change the pedaling resistance so you can achieve your goals while exercising at your fitness level. The LCD display allows you to monitor your workout performance and progress by displaying your speed, distance and time, as well as your calories burned.
  • Exercise comfortably. The Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycling Bike has features that will make your workout more comfortable, including a road bike style seat that can be adjusted not only vertically, but horizontally as well. The upright foam-padded handle bars give you different gripping options. And the caged pedals provide more support while you’re pedaling and prevent your feet from slipping.
  • Quality backed by manufacturer’s warranty. Many reviewers write about the good quality of this exercise bike, especially when compared to higher priced models. And Sunny Health & Fitness backs this up with a three-year manufacturer’s limited warranty.

Other Considerations

  • Not recommended for all body types. The specifications for this Sunny Health & Fitness model state that the maximum user weight is 220 pounds.

BEST BY CATEGORY

Best Low Impact Exercise Bike

why buy?

Low impact, or recumbent, exercise bikes are the best choice if you have physical limitations, such as bad knees. Because of the way you sit on a recumbent exercise bike, there’s less impact on your joints and lower back. And with their larger seats, these exercise bikes are comfortable to use.

Top Pick

Schwinn MY16 230 Recumbent Bike

If you’re looking for a low impact, or recumbent, exercise bike, the Schwinn MY16 230 is an excellent choice. Using a recumbent exercise bike puts less stress on your joints and lower back, and the Schwinn MY16 230 is absolutely loaded with features to give you a good cardiovascular workout, including lumbar support, preset exercise programs, two-user setup and multiple levels of resistance. Add to that a warranty that tops the industry standard, and you’ll see why ReviewLab makes this Schwinn model our best choice in low impact exercise bikes.

  • 90overall
  • 94quality
  • 74value
  • 83brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Advanced workout features. The Schwinn MY16 230 includes profile setups for two users, 20 levels of computer-controlled resistance and 22 preset exercise programs such as heart rate control, beginner, advanced and custom user defined. Two LCD windows track time, distance and calories burned, and these results plus the grip-enabled heart rate can be transferred via USB to different apps such as GoogleFit and MyFitnessPal.
  • Ergonomically designed for comfort. Features to keep you comfortable during your workout include a contoured, ventilated seat with a lumbar support backrest and contoured leg area, a three-speed fan, an MP3 input and acoustic chambered speakers. With a weight capacity of 300 pounds and the seat rail slider system to adjust for different heights, this exercise bike accommodates a variety of body types.
  • Quality backed by excellent warranty. Several reviewers comment on the great quality of this model, and Schwinn tops most industry standards with a warranty that includes 10 years for the frame, two-year mechanical, one-year electrical and 90-day labor.

Other Considerations

  • Size. Because of the recumbent style, this model (and most low-impact exercise bikes) takes up more space than an upright style.
RUNNER-UP

Exerpeutic 1000 High Capacity Magnetic Recumbent Bike

The Exerpeutic 1000 High Capacity Magnetic Recumbent Bike is another great choice to give you a low impact yet good cardiovascular workout. This model includes features such as the magnetic tension control to adjust resistance, exercise results tracking, large LCD monitor and oversized seat cushion that not only help you achieve a successful workout, but also add to your comfort while exercising. And several reviewers agree that the Exerpeutic 1000 provides great quality at a reasonable price.

  • 91overall
  • 91quality
  • 95value
  • 88brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Achieve your workout goals with advanced features. The Exerpeutic 1000 exercise bike includes many extras such as a large LCD display that monitors your calories burned, your heart rate and the distance, time and speed you pedal. The eight-level magnetic tension control allows you to adjust the resistance; the magnetic design also creates a smooth, quiet ride. And the hand pulse monitor helps you stay within your target heart rate zone.
  • Accommodates most body types. Most people will be able to comfortably use this exercise bike with its weight capacity of 300 pounds and easy seat adjustment for users 5’3” to 6’3” tall.
  • Easy and comfortable to use. The Exerpeutic 1000 exercise bike, like all recumbent exercise bikes, puts less stress on your joints and lower back. This model adds to your comfort by including extended leg stabilizers to prevent movement or tipping, large pedals with safety straps and a large seat cushion and backrest. Wheels allow you to easily move the bike to different locations in your home. Several reviewers say the Exerpeutic 1000 is very comfortable to ride.

Other Considerations

  • Seat adjustment can be difficult. A few reviewers say it’s difficult to adjust the seat while sitting on the bike since the adjustment knobs are under the seat.
  • Size. Because of the recumbent style, this model (and most low-impact exercise bikes) takes up more space than an upright style.

Best Folding Exercise Bike

why buy?

If you have limited space in which to keep your exercise bike, a folding model is a great option for easy storage when you aren’t using it. Folding exercise bikes are available in upright or low impact (recumbent) styles, as well as models with either basic or advanced features.

Top Pick

Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike

Buying a folding exercise bike doesn’t mean you have to do without some advanced features, and the Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike provides more than you may expect in such a compact design. Multiple levels of resistance, heart monitoring and results tracking help you get the workout you need for your personal fitness level and goals. And Exerpeutic ensures your comfort with its extra-large seat and a sturdy construction that accommodates users up to 300 pounds.

  • 94overall
  • 94quality
  • 98value
  • 88brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Advanced features. You may expect a foldable exercise bike to include only the most basic features, but that’s not the case with this Exerpeutic upright bike. Hand pulse sensors monitor your targeted heart rate zone, and the large LCD display tracks your heart rate and distance, time and speed pedaled. The eight-level magnetic tension system allows you to adjust the resistance to your personal fitness level while providing a smooth, quite ride. Many users comment that this bike is very quiet and doesn’t interfere with talking or watching television.
  • Space saving design. When in use, this upright exercise bike measures only 31” long x 19” wide x 46” high. And when folded, its half that size. Wheels are included so you can easily transport the bike to a storage area. The bike weighs 42.8 pounds.
  • Accommodates most body types. Though the Exerpeutic is very compact and unlike most folding exercise bikes, this model’s heavy duty construction accommodates users up to 300 pounds. The seat adjusts for users 5’3” to 6’1” tall. And the extra-large seat cushion makes this bike a comfort to ride.

Other Considerations

  • Seat may be too large. One reviewer says the seat may be too large for smaller people, and the seat can’t be changed to a different style.
RUNNER-UP

Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Folding Recumbent Exercise Bike

If you’re looking for a low-impact exercise bike, but have limited space in which to store it, the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Folding Recumbent Exercise Bike is an excellent choice. This model folds up to an amazingly compact size so you can still enjoy the benefits of a recumbent bike, which puts less stress on your joints and lower back. Included in this bike are such features as multi-level adjustable resistance and a digital display that tracks your time, speed, distance and calories burned.

  • 87overall
  • 86quality
  • 89value
  • 85brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Advanced features. This Sunny Health & Fitness exercise bike proves you don’t have to give up features when you buy a folding bike. This model includes a magnetic eight-level resistance system that’s easily adjusted with the tension knob mounted on the front bike frame. The digital monitor tracks your time, speed, distance and calories burned. The non-skid foot pedals with straps and the cushioned seat and back help make your workout safe and comfortable.
  • Folds to compact size for easy storage. The Sunny Health & Fitness Recumbent Exercise Bike folds into a compact size measuring only 18” long x 18.5” wide x 52” high. The bike includes wheels so you can easily move the bike to a different room or storage area.
  • Low-impact workout. Recumbent bikes are a great choice if you’re looking for a low-impact workout. Because of the way you’re positioned on the bike, you’ll have less stress on your joints and lower back. Recumbent bikes typically take up more space, but with the Sunny Health & Fitness folding model, you can have the advantages of a low-impact exercise bike with the convenience of storing it when not in use.
  • Quality backed by manufacturer’s warranty. Many reviewers write about this exercise bike’s sturdy construction. And Sunny Health & Fitness backs this up with a three-year manufacturer’s limited warranty.

Other Considerations

  • Lower Weight Capacity. The user should consider the weight capacity for this exercise bike, which is 220 pounds maximum, before buying this model.

Best Exercise Bike for Legs and Arms

why buy?

You can knock out two workouts at once with an exercise bike designed to work your legs and arms. These models come in either upright styles with a variety of options for exercising your arms or ones that can be used on the floor for legs and a table for arms.

Top Pick

Schwinn AD2 Airdyne Bike

The Schwinn AD2 Airdyne upright model is an excellent choice for exercising your legs and arms at the same time, which is not only convenient, it’s also a great cardiovascular workout. With this Schwinn model, you can isolate your upper body workout by using the stationary foot rest pegs. And when exercising both arms and legs, the synchronized motion simulates your natural movement. These and other features ensure you’ll get the workout that’s best for your personal fitness level and goals.

  • 88overall
  • 91quality
  • 70value
  • 83brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Exercise arms and legs together or separately. Exercising your arms and legs at the same time will give you a great full-body, cardiovascular workout. The Schwinn AD2 Airdyne exercise bike has synchronized arm and leg motion that simulates your body’s natural movement. If you want to isolate your upper body workout, simply rest your feet on the stationary foot pegs.
  • Features that enhance your workout. The Schwinn AD2 Airdyne uses a quiet, patent-pending fan design that gives you an infinite number of resistance levels. The fan’s air flow will also help keep you cool. The bike includes an easy-to-read monitor that tracks your speed, RPMs, distance, time and calories burned. You get added comfort with the extra-padded, anatomically correct seat. The maximum recommended weight for this exercise bike is 250 pounds.
  • Schwinn warranty. Several buyers say the quality of this exercise bike is good or excellent, and Schwinn offers a five-year warranty on the frame, a one-year warranty on mechanical and electrical and 90 days on parts and labor.

Other Considerations

  • Size and weight of exercise bike. You should consider the size and weight of this Schwinn stationary upright model before buying. It measures 46" long x 25" wide x 50" high and weighs 96 pounds.
RUNNER-UP

MagneTrainer-ER Arm and Leg Exerciser

The MagneTrainer-ER is a compact exerciser that allows you to workout either your arms or legs without taking up the space an exercise bike requires. You can place the exerciser on the floor or table and sit in a chair while working out, a safe option for seniors or those needing physical therapy. And though this exerciser is small, it includes many features you’ll find on exercise bikes, such as a wide range of resistance levels and an LCD display.

  • 92overall
  • 92quality
  • 97value
  • 92brand

Why We Recommend It

  • Exercises either arms or legs. With the MagneTrainer-ER Exerciser, you can use the same machine to work out your arms or your legs. The compact design has pedals that work with your hands or your feet, and you can pedal both forward and backward. The pedals have adjustable Velcro straps for safety and to accommodate any foot size. Whether the exerciser is placed on the floor or on a table, you can sit in a chair while working out, which can be a safer option than an exercise bike for seniors and those needing physical therapy.
  • Same features as many exercise bikes. This mini exerciser includes features you may only expect to find on exercise bikes, including a patented magnetic resistance system, which provides a large range of resistance levels and ensures smooth and quiet pedaling. Adjust your resistance level with the knob mounted on the front of the exerciser. An LCD display tracks your time, distance, speed and calories burned, and automatically turns on and off when you start and stop using the exerciser. There’s also an online calorie calculator based on your height, weight, age and gender.
  • Compact design needs little space. Compared to an exercise bike, the MagneTrainer-ER Exerciser measures approximately 15.5” long x 15.5” wide x 15.5” high, so it can be stored in a closet or kept in a corner of your living room, office or bedroom. Many reviewers comment on the sturdy construction of the steel base and other components.

Other Considerations

  • Possible limited workout advancement. One reviewer feels that it may not be challenging enough if someone wants to move on to more advanced fitness goals.