In modern times it's common knowledge that daily exercise is beneficial towards positive attributes but mostly a lot of long term health. What isn't so common knowledge is the best exercises to continue to challenge your body, build muscle and stay fit.
There are tons of machines, some affordable or not, that allow you to achieve your fitness goals, and the ab twist on the informercial isn't one of them.
The spin bike however, allows for a challenging and intense workout that isn't too time consuming. Most don't understand how efficient of a workout machine the spin bike actually is.
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Spin Bikes And Their Purpose
Contrary to the believe that the best spin bikes only tackle your cardio and legs, it actually works on a numerous amounts of places around your body.
It works the shoulders, back, chest, abs and the entire lower body. It's easier on the joints than other forms of cardio, such as running and even helps to stimulate joints to keep them healthy.
Personal spin bikes, offer the user a real life cycling experience from the comfort of their own home. The ability to change from uphill to downhill, with either high intensity or low intensity are offered, as well as the modern ergonomics which make the ride that much more comfortable.
Although spin classes are great, the feeling of a private workout is unmatched, it can really help loosen you up and keep you motivated to reach your goals.
Especially if you prefer your own comfort and don't like to be pressured by coming in on time to make it to the spin class, owning your own best spin bike is a real treat.
There are so many pros of owning a personal spin bike, the only real negatives are the small space it takes, the small investment you have to make to own a bike and during those unmotivated times and most of all the guilt of having to look at it every time you go to your basement.
What To Look For When Choosing Your Bike
Just like paper towels, cars, computers, shoes, or anything consumers may buy, there are several different products made by several different manufactures all varying in some sort of way.
Spin bikes follow the same trend, however some features are found in most current models with some differently built quality, mechanisms and parts being used for each.
Spin bikes are quite affordable, but by no means are cheap, so here are some things to keep in mind when trying to get great value out of the best spin bike to be yours.
A quick overview of some of the essential parts of a spin bike will help you understand the importance of each feature and spec:
- The First Important Part Is The Flywheel
This is the big wheel normally at the front of the bike that spins as you pedal. Build quality and material are not very important because it is a metal wheel, but weight on the other hand matters.
The heavier the flywheel, the smoother the pedalling. This is very important. Most personal spin bikes have a flywheel weighing 18kg.
The spin bikes found in most gyms, which are generally one of the best spin bikes, as they need to last longer and get a lot more use compared to personal ones, tend to have flywheels weighing around 20-22kg.
The importance of this is to remember that any flywheel weighing less that 18kg should not be considered, because it will result in a less desirable ride.
- The Frame Of The Spin Bike Is Also Very Important!
Most frames are quite durable and strong. Some frames however are noticeably weaker around the stabilising legs. If the legs are too weak the bike may sway a little from the side to side, when riding and creak.
Weak legs can lead to an unpleasant noisy ride. When buying online look for frames with thick dimensions and sturdy legs which support the entire frame. Unlike on real bikes where a a weaker frame would mean more problems.
The Drive System Is Also A Very Important Part
It contributes to ride with comfort. There are two different types of drive systems, which are the belt and the chain system.
The belt is the more desirable option as it's quieter and produces a smoother ride.
The chain drive system is just as smooth when oiled but not as quiet, if you have to choose between a belt and a chain, choose a belt.
The ability to change resistance is usually offered on all of the best spin bikes, however there are different mechanisms how resistance is controlled, which we'll go through below.
The four types of resistance are:
- The cable system is most popular on older lower end bikes and although the system works, it works worst out of the four. The system can slip making it unreliable and frustrating which can ruin the spin bike experience for you.
- The manual screw is the next type of resistance mechanism used on mid-high level spin bikes. Unlike the last system it is very reliable, but there is no indication of what your actual resistance is. This ok at best but in order to push your limits and reach new high's it is actually fairly important to know where your limits are.
Therefore it is recommended to look for other mechanisms that actually show you how much of a resistance you are riding at.
- Electronic magnet and electromagnetic resistance is found in higher end and usually all the best spin bikes. Both of these systems do the same thing except that the electromagnetic resistance has no moving parts.
Electronic magnet resistance is done by using a motor to move a magnet closer to or further away from the wheel , which adds and removes resistance.
The great thing about this is the computer in your spin bike. The computer aids to convert this data into a form of feedback which can be useful to the user.
Electronic magnets are much more common than electromagnetic systems which are actually quite rare.
Other Important Features
Another important feature is adjustments. Although often overlooked because it seems very basic, adjustment plays a vital role. Height adjustment and handlebar adjustment might be more important than you think and is always a good feature to have.
Certain height adjustments are actually vital if you prefer not to injure your joints and legs. The wrong height adjustment can actually cause a lot of chronic pain as an aftermath, especially if you like to work out for longer periods of time.
Additionally you shouldn't underestimate the ease of use. Just because a spin bike offers adjustment doesn't mean it's easy or efficient to adjust.
Speaking of ergonomics, remember to find a seat that supports you comfortably. Some may prefer a bigger seat for maximum comfort while others may prefer a smaller thinner sear for agility and the ability to easily switch from standing to sitting.
If you find the perfect bike with a bad seat, it's not the end of the world as most seats can be swapped out for one that better fits your needs.
So Which Are The Best Spin Bikes?
Some of the best spin bikes have special features which set them apart such as a built in fan to cool you off. Most of these features are not essential, but are nice to have as a treat.
Another example would be built in speakers which allow you to play your music through your machine or bottle holders to keep your water near by.
There are definitely work arounds to provide the same experience with a bike with none of these features, such as using speakers, a fans and a table beside your spin bike with your drink.
You don't really need to be a rocket scientist to manage without these features. In most cases the work arounds end up working a lot better than the implemented features.
One feature that some couldn't live without is their console. It gives the user information on current calorie loss, duration of workout and ability to change programs.
Although a spin bike can be used without a console it is quite useful. Some things to also remember before your purchase is to make sure the bike can support our weight, as well as safety features of the bike, in case you have children or pets.
Finally excessive noise is something you really want to make sure to look into before a purchase. Although at first you may hardly notice it this can end up as a real issue.
If the machine has negative reviews regarding noise it can get progressively worse throughout use. These are some of the informations needed to buy a spin bike. Just keep these in mind you'll find a spin bike with great value.
The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike with Pulse is definitely a step forward in the spin bike market, it is compact and quality made.
The machine has a Heavy Duty Design which allows it to have a 300 pound weight capacity.
The frame is not too bulky and much less invasive than other machines, but still provides the support that is needed. The seat cushion is large making it usable by people of all sizes, it can also be easily adjustable making a workout that much more comfortable.
The 3 piece "high torque" cranking drive system provides smooth pedalling. The flywheel is precisely balanced and is accompanied with the V- belt drive which provides both, smooth and quiet cycling.
The resistance system used in this bike is magnetic and includes 8 levels. The user can easily raise or lower the tension to make the workout more difficult or easier.
The hand pulse sensors located on the handle bars are used to measure heart rate. This is in turn used to measure calories lost. The 3.6 inch LCD is easily viewable and displays distance travelled, calories burnt, time, speed and heart rate.
The build of this spin bike allows for easy mounting and dismounting which means a more comfortable workout in the long run.
Additionally this machine can be folded to half its size allowing for easy storage in a closet, or the corner of a room.
At first glance this bike may look weak and wiggly, but it is quite the opposite. Exerpeutic Therapeutic Fitness did a great job with build of this bike.
The frame is made of thick steel, but still light enough to move from different rooms and the seat is very comfortable.
The technicalities are also very impressive. The magnetic tension technology is perfectly implemented into the bike and provides enough resistance for most users. The only thing that is negative about this bike is that it's not fully upright.
This can cause some stress on your back, because you are pushing the pedals away from your body. Bikes with the pedals underneath rather than in front are more ergonomic. Overall this is an excellent bike especially for the price it goes for!
The Pro Indoor Cycling Bike by Sunny Health & Fitness is a quality mid range bike. Unlike the last bike it cannot be folded, which many find displeasing.
However it has a solid strong steel frame and weighs 97 pounds in total. The frame can hold up to 275 pounds which makes it usable to most.
This makes for a sturdy and firm stance and it feels that way as well. Even for those who like to pedal extremely fast, you won't fly off and wobble on your seat.
The seat is similar to a regular bike seat which makes it easier to transition from seated to standing riding.
The seat can be fully adjusted which means it can be moved up, down, as well as back and front which is essential for people with longer legs.
The seat can be adjusted to a maximum of 41 inches and a minimum of 28.5 inches. The handle bars are also adjustable and padded allowing you to squeeze them and get a good grip on them, when the workout gets intense and sweaty.
The 40 pound chrome solid flywheel provides smooth, quiet, stable and stylish riding. The weight of the flywheel directly affects the noise produces and smoothness of the ride which is why this flywheel is so heavy.
The heavy duty cranking system and smooth chain drive system mechanism also provides the user with a smoother ride.
Sadly this machine does not come with a console. One thing to remember with this bike though, is that it's really solid and very durable. It feels far from cheap and can easily be compared to the bikes at the gym.
Some might say that the assembly is a little bit more demanding than other items it's not difficult and just requires patience and careful reading instead of improvisation skills.
Although this bike does provide that classic standing pedalling feeling with the pedals being directly under the user, this can lead to problems with shorter people not being able to reach the pedals.
You may end up looking twice at the price tag and believe you hit a jackpot but it is actually the price this high end piece of art is going for!
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1110 Indoor Cycling Bike is another durable indoor spin bike.
Throw away your gym membership and forget the spinning classes you won't attend because this bike will probably cost you the same as your membership and gives the same value and quality!
Only difference being, is that you can actually use it when you have time in stead of rushing home from work to go to the gym.
This bike is made with quality parts to last long with vigorous use. The steel frame provides all the support needed to provide a comfortable ride with up to 250 pounds.
The bike weight is around 120 pounds and includes a quality 44 pound flywheel.
This heavier flywheel provides plenty of benefits to the user. It greatly helps to stabilize the bike so it doesn't rock from side to side.
It also helps making the ride smoother so that when the user is coasting the pedals, they move in a more controlled and consistent manner.
The flywheel also reduces noise when pedalling at all speeds.
The heavy duty crank also allows for smooth pedalling and quieter motion which is always a plus when it comes to spin bikes.
A chain drive system is used in this machine and with such heavy duty materials used around it, it works efficiently, smoothly and quietly. The tension can also be adjusted and the controls are super easy and accessible for the user.
The seat and handle bars can also be adjusted for comfortable and easy use which is a huge benefit.
The large flywheel really helps this bike excel it makes it very quiet and provides a smooth effortless pedal at low tension.
One con of this machine is the tension wheel, minor tweaks can result in major tension differences.
Instead of spending thousands on a high end quality bike, you can get this one for a fraction of the price and incredible results. The positive feedback from users to this bike is almost overwhelming.
Many gyms actually buy these in bulk and use them for their spinning classes.
The Sunny Health & FItness SF-B1423 Belt Drive Indoor Cycling Bike is one of the most stylish feature packed bike on the list.
This bike is made with good parts, but not the best parts that Sunny Health & Fitness uses in their bikes.
Some durability and quality materials are sacrificed for features, which is not a negative thing if your into a lot of features. The steel frame is strong and does a decent job by holding a maximum capacity of 250 pounds.
The machine is fitted with a 40 pound chrome flywheel which adds to the overall noise reduction, stability of the machine and smoothness of the ride.
A belt drive system is used to further reduce noise, the 40 pound flywheel is not heavy enough to reduce the sound to an accepted level.
The heavy duty crank system is used to make pedalling smooth and it does it very well. Tension is controlled by a brake pad which is micro adjustable, this system gets the job done, but is not overwhelming impressive.
The pedals include foot cages, which are quite useful and are more comfortable to the user.
The bike includes water bottle holders in a very convenient place, for easy access to your water at all times during your workout. The seat and handle bars can be easily fully adjusted.
The seat can be moved up, down, forward, and backward to a maximum height of 36 inches and a minimum height of 28 inches.
The handlebars can be moved up and down to a maximum of 42 inches and a minimum of 38 inches. It is very adjustable even for shorter people to have a great stance.
Sadly it doesn't include a console which displays time, speed, distance, calories, and heart beat sensor. However this can be purchased separately.
This bike is good at everything but not overly impressive at anything either. Nor is it bad at anything, its at a happy medium and offers great value.
People actually tend to be stunned how great it works for the price it goes for so in terms of quality and price this is definitely one of the best spin bikes you can get!
The Exerpeutic 500 XLS Foldable Magnetic Upright Bike focuses on durability and strength in a foldable bike package.
Don't be fooled by the skinny look of it because this bike actually qualifies as one of the best spin bikes for it's sturdy built!
The steel frame is very strong allowing a maximum of 400 pounds, this strength allows for the overall machine to be more stable while in use or out of use. The frame is heavy duty and very durable, it can last for a long time with several uses.
The three piece cranking system provides smooth and consistent feedback from the pedal to provide a better overall motion. The large pedal design with a strap prevents the users foot from slipping when at high rpm's.
The precision balanced flywheel and V-belt drive also provide smooth pedalling and quiet operation.
This machine uses a magnetic tension system with 8 levels to challenge every user. A large seat cushion is provided for comfort and it can support many different body sizes and shapes.
The heart pulse sensors located on the handle bars monitor heart rate.
This machine can be folded and wheels into another room, area or closets near by, thanks to it's transportation wheels.
This bike is very quiet and offers a comfortable ride for most. However, the large seat can be quite uncomfortable for some. This is due to the wide seat rubbing on the inner thighs of users which can be rather displeasing after longer workouts.
Because this bike doesn't require a lot of parts to be put together, you can actually set this up in under half an hour by following the simple instructions a kid could even follow (note please don't force your kids to assemble your new spin bike).
Finally you shouldn't worry about it being reachable for smaller people. If you're of the shorter category, you can still have a perfect adjustment for your height and get a great workout.
The Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycle Trainer's focal point is around the flywheel. This is one of the main features for a specific reason.
The frame, like most bikes produced by this company, are quite durable and strong. However, this bike is on the weaker and less durable side.
The maximum weight capacity if 275 pounds and the bike is around 130 pounds.
The flywheel is a massive 49 pounds which means ultimate stability, ultimate smooth motion from the pedals and ultimate noise reduction.
In addition to the heavy flywheel, is a belt drive which also significantly reduces sound and increases the smoothness of the ride.
The resistance is adjusted with a press brake down system, which isn't the most quality system but does the job correctly.
The handlebars and seat are adjustable for additional comfort. This bike is all about the comfort for the user it will last very long and always give a consistent smooth ride.
Also noteworthy is that the seat not only moves up and down but also back and forth to get that extra bit of comfort missing between your legs. The feet are also adjustable which makes it the perfect stance for any rider.
Due to its firm construction and quality materials, it stands rock solid on the ground!
Upon arrival of this magnificent piece of equipment, you'll find that it is very easy to assemble. So no worries on that aspect!
You'll be able to have a midnight workout and not wake up a single soul thanks to the quiet performance.
The ProGear 100S Exercise Bike/Indoor Training Cycle has a durable and strong frame able to withstand the most intense workouts.
The frame can hold a maximum capacity of 250 pounds, which allows for various sizes and weights to use this machine.
A 22 pound cast iron inertia driven flywheel is included to provide smooth and consistent pedalling.
It doesn't make a lot of noise in general and its stability is very remarkable. Even when you switch on your beast mode and start pedalling like a maniac, you'll find that it stands firm and can handle your pressure.
The assembly is also very user friendly and can be done within or under an hour, even for very unskilled hands.
The bike is chain driven to simulate the sensation or an actual road bike exercise. Although this makes sense, a chain is not necessarily needed to simulate road bike exercise.
An easi dial tension adjustment is used to easily increase or decrease workout intensity. The seat is quite practical and comfortable, also offering 4 way adjustment.
An LCD screen is also included which monitors your heart and displays various useful details such as: distance, calories burned, speed, time, pulse and scan. This is a stable bike but doesn't offer anything extraordinary to compete with it's competitors.
The Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Cycle Trainer has a strong frame but by no means is it heavy duty.
When trying to set it up, you don't have to end up frustrated or crying on the floor because it's actually fairly easy and can be mounted quicker than you might imagine.
Surprisingly it can hold a fair amount of weight, the maximum capacity being 240 pounds while the total weight of the bike is only around 70 pounds.
It has a 22 pound fly wheel which provides a smoother ride, stability and less noise. The heavy duty crank also helps smoothen out the ride along with the chain drive mechanism.
Even if you crank the seat up real high to get that fresh air from the top, you will notice that it is very stable and doesn't wobble as most cheaper bikes tend to do with a high adjusted seat.
A felt fabric brake pad is used to adjust tension. The seat is fully adjustable is four different directions. An LCD is also included which is quite useful displaying speed, distance, scan, time, and calories burned.
This bike is a very ergonomic bike built with the users comfort in mind, however it is not the best bike for those of you that are extremely tall.
People of 6 feet have said to have reported no problems though, so unless you are above normal you shouldn't face any major issues.
All bikes, although mostly similar and all following the same purpose, are all different in their own ways.
Some bikes are more durable, some are more lightweight, some sacrifice features for durability, others sacrifice durability for features.
Although each bike is great, which one provides the most value? When carefully analyzing each brand and each product on it's own, it becomes clear that the Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike with Pulse has the most value.
This is simply because each of it's categories and performances is being done in a great way.
Noise reduction is great by using the flywheel and belt drive. The motion of the pedals is smooth due to the flywheel, belt drive and 3 piece crank system.
Magnetic tension is used which is the best tension system, in addition 8 different levels of tensions are offered. The ergonomic build and ease of use of the LCD is great touches on an already excellent machine.
Finally the ability to fold and wheel it away for storage is also convenient for some users. For the price of this machine and the abundance of high quality features included right out of the box screams of value!