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The Best Exercise Bikes for Your Home Gym: Peleton and Bowflex

Bowflex

That perfect home gym you’ve been carefully curating for the last nine months isn’t complete without cardio equipment. I know, I know, cardio is the least liked part of anyone’s workout routine, but cardio is great for burning fat and weight loss, especially when paired with your classic weight training. Aside from your physical fitness goals, cardio is the best exercise for cardiovascular and cardiorespiratory (heart and lung) fitness. Like it or not, you need it in your life if you want to live a healthy lifestyle.

Indoor exercise bikes are a great way to incorporate some low-impact cardio into your workout routine that is easy on your joints and tough on your heart rate. If you plan to run a marathon or compete in any other endurance fitness event or triathlon, you need to build up your stamina, and an exercise bike will help you get there. Exercise bikes can also be used in high-intensity interval training (HIIT) in order to lose fat and gain muscle. Even if you think you hate cardio, you’ll love the results you get from adding this versatile piece of equipment to your home gym.

Indoor exercise bikes are one of the more expensive exercise equipment you can purchase, so to help you narrow down your options, we’ve rounded up the best bikes for every kind of rider below.

Best Smart Bike: Bowflex C6

Bowflex C6 Bike
Bowflex

Bowflex has been the king of home gym fitness for decades and the C6 bike is proof that the brand deserves to keep its crown. It offers a smooth, quiet ride and the backlit LCD metric console tracks your workout in real time so you can track your progress. Bowflex didn’t try to reinvent the wheel with this exercise bike: It connects via Bluetooth to your favorite fitness apps including Peleton, Zwift, and others. If you love a challenging ride, the C6 features magnetic resistance with 100 micro-adjustable resistance levels along with dual-link pedals with toe cages, a pair of thee-pound dumbbells, and a Bluetooth-enabled heart-rate armband monitor. It’s everything you need to get a full-body workout in from one small corner of your home or garage.

Best Rated Exercise Bike: Echelon Connect Sport

Echelon Connect

If you think the Echelon looks and sounds eerily similar to the Peleton, you are correct except for one huge factor: The price point. The Echelon costs one-fourth of what a Peleton will cost you and many reviewers say the bike itself is just as good. There’s no tablet preloaded with hundreds of classes, but if you have a tablet, you can prop it up on the bike and watch the same content with the Peleton app. Although it’s affordable, the Echelon still features all the bells and whistles of a standard indoor cycling bike including 32 levels of resistance for varied intensity, no-slip handlebars, and a cushioned seat. If you can’t stomach the price of a Peleton, the Echelon is a great pick.

Best Exercise Bikes For Spin Class Regulars: Peleton

Peleton

If you miss your group spin classes more than you miss some family members, you need the Peleton. At this point in the indoor cycling craze, the bike itself is no longer special or innovative, but that doesn’t make its fans love the bike any less. The livestreaming and on-demand classes feature high energy trainers who improve your mood and your physical fitness in the same ride. Competitive riders love the leaderboard that gives this solo workout more of a community feel. The price might seem steep at first, but it pays for itself quickly if you were a spin class regular pre-pandemic.

Best Interactive Bike: ProForm Carbon CX

The ProForm Carbon CX turns your home gym into a cycling studio with trainer-led workouts and automated resistance control, which allows your trainer to control the resistance on your bike to realistically match their terrain for your workout. Spin classes aren’t limited to hot, sweaty rooms anymore either: trainers can take you on outdoor rides that allow you to see the world.

Best Compact Bike: Schwinn IC4

Schwinn IC4 bike

Schwinn knows bikes. The brand’s indoor exercise bike is no exception to their dedication to high-quality biking, indoor or outdoors. The bike is 10 inches shorter than a Peleton, which makes it ideal for use in small spaces. Featuring magnetic resistance, the bike doesn’t come with a tablet but it does come with a mount for you to easily set yours up on to stream your favorite spin classes on any fitness app. It also comes with a Bluetooth heart rate armband that syncs with the bike and other apps, along with three-pound weights. Overall, it can definitely compete with the pricier bikes on this list and a good value for a studio-quality exercise bike.

Best Budget-Friendly Bike: Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Exercise Cycling Bike

Sunny Health & Fitness Indoor Exercise Cycling Bike

For under $300, you can’t get more basic than the Sunny. Featuring a 49-pound flywheel and adjustable handlebars, seat, and resistance, it’s nothing fancy but it’ll get the job done. The bike has a performance monitor to track your workout, along with a pulse sensor. The device holder allows you to stream your favorite workouts or TV shows while you ride. It won’t win an indoor bike beauty pageant, but over 4,000 reviews on Amazon agree it’s a great value.

Best Exercise Bike For Cycling Enthusiasts: Wattbike Atom

Wattbike Atom

The Wattbike Atom looks like a bike from the future – and it costs like one, too. At over $2,000, it’s more expensive than the Peleton, but while Peleton is made for the masses, the Wattbike Atom is made to attract serious cyclists who are used to the feel of a true road bike. This sturdy bike delivers in terms of top-notch design, features, and customization. It can adjust completely to your size and preferences, and it’s built with a rock-solid foundation that makes you feel supported while you push through challenging workouts. The app is free, unlike Peleton, which means the hefty price tag pays for itself, and pays dividends, the longer you use it.

Best Upright Bike: Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike

Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike

If you’re low on space and think you don’t have room for an indoor exercise bike, think again. This foldable exercise bike tucks away under your bed or in your closet until you use it, and at under 40 pounds, it’s to move around. The large seat cushion, LCD display, and eight-level magnetic tension gives you a comfortable yet difficult ride without the clutter. If you’re not sold on spending a ton of money on an exercise bike, this is a solid investment.

Best For On-Demand Streaming Services: JOROTO Belt Drive Indoor Cycling Bike

The Joroto Belt Drive Indoor Cycling Bike is designed with streaming in mind. The bike puts your tablet and content at the center of your experience so you can immerse yourself in your workouts from Peloton, Studio SWEAT onDemand, or other popular streaming fitness apps. The chrome flywheel and magnetic resistance make for a smooth ride, while the digital monitor tracks your workout progress. It’s one of the more affordable indoor exercise bikes on this list, and pairs well with on-demand streaming services.

Best Desk Bike: Exerpeutic ExerWorK 2000i Bluetooth Folding Exercise Desk

Exerpeutic ExerWorK 1000 Desk Station

Workout while you work with this ergonomically designed desk bike. Featuring a large fully adjustable desktop with the ability to tilt forward, back, up, and down, this bike allows you to get your heart rate up in a meeting or a conference call without stepping away from your desk. It’s also foldable which makes it easy to stow away after your workday is over. Never use the excuse of “I don’t have time to work out” again with this 2-in-1 desk bike.

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