Category Archives for Recumbent Bikes

Recumbent Exercise Bikes Review

What is a recumbent exercise bike?

So why do they call it recumbent? What does that word even mean?

Well, lets start with the word recumbent… it comes from the latin root meaning to lie… so basically a recumbent bike is one in which you are reclined.

I think they stretch it a little using that term, but basically a recumbent bike is where you are seating in a reclining position as opposed to an upright position.

How does it differ from a regular stationary bike?

As mentioned, since it’s a bike where you sit reclined, the seat is much larger and more comfortable and it has a backrest to support your lower back.  Also, your legs are NOT moving directly below your pelvis to pedal, but are moving out in front of you.

What can you do with it you cannot do with a regular stationary bike?

For starters it’s just plain more comfortable. Most bike seats are very small and are made for younger folks who either have a lot of muscle to hold their pelvic bones away from the hard tiny seat or they are wearing those biking shorts with a big patch of gel pad between them and the tiny hard seat.

For most regular people, a reclined comfortable seat is MUCH more pleasurable and because it is, most regular people are more likely to continue their exercise regimen if it is actually enjoyable.

Also the head position is much more comfortable and better for reading or watching television. Less probability of neck aches and pains as you are not arching your neck upwards to see things.

So a recumbent bike is perfect for those who fit the following:

  • Just want comfortable workouts, so they ensure a continuing and successful program.
  • Have injuries or joint pain.
  • Want to make sure they don’t get neck, back or other joint problems.
  • Want to be able to watch T.V. or read comfortably while they work out.
  • Are within the height range of between 5’0″ and 6’3″ as 99% of all recumbent bikes are adjustable for those heights.
  • Need a low impact workout.
  • Don’t enjoy tiny hard seats.
  • Don’t see themselves wanting to stand and pedal (think hard core cycling classes at the gym).

Can you train hard?

Of course you can, but most fat burning occurs at the level where you can still speak comfortably. For most folks, this will be around 50-70% heart rate max (which is 220 – your age).

So the formula is (220-Your Age) x 0.5 = 50% of Heart Rate Max (H.R.M.). You can replace the 0.5 with any number up to 0.7 which would be 70% of your heart rate max. SO lets do an example of a 52 year old person220-52 = 168 H.R.M. . This says that your heart rate maximum for safety is 168 beats per minute. (If you go over, don’t stress out, some people are just genetically in better shape than others). Then for your Training Heart Rate Max (T.H.R.M.) we multiply your HRM x (lets say 0.6 which is 60%).. so 168 x 0.6 = 101 beats per minute, which would be a great training zone for fat loss.

So while going to a super fit cycling class will push you WAY past that, it’s not necessary to burn fat and get lean and we know burning fat and getting lean lowers diabetes risk, heart disease, stroke risk and a host of other medical issues.

What are some Good recumbent bikes?

Well, fortunately for you reading this, we like to really look into every nook and cranny of everything we review, so we’ve done just that with several of the most purchased recumbent exercise bikes.

On the down side of things, we found that virtually all of the recumbent bikes on the market seem to be only slightly different that the others. It appears as if they are all produced at the same manufacturing plant and are given different plastics, knobs, and other outward features so they appear different but really all their inner parts are almost identical.

The best thing we could suggest is to click one of the pictures of the bikes below and head on over to Amazon.com and read the recumbent bike reviews and look for customer service issues. Because if most bikes are the same, then price + customer service is the deciding factor.

Below we have done a summary review in a sortable table format, so you can compare however you like. We do a specific review for each bike and if you click the link in the table below, it will take you to the specific review for that bike.

 

NordicTrack GX 4.7 Recumbent Bike- Review

The NordicTrack GX 4.7 is our TOP PICK in recumbent bikes because: 1. Nordic Track has a history of quality, 2. It is priced well below the Schwinn 270 and the Schwinn 230. It has almost as many features as the as the 270 and more than the 230.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the GX 4.7 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • Unlimited preset exercise programs when used with iFit. Resistance automatically adjusts to match terrain! VERY COOL!
  • 22 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat gives you the most comfortable ride.
  • Cooling fan
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • MP3 input with in-console speakers
  • Track your progress on the adjustable LCD screen or transfer your data via Bluetooth to your favorite fitness apps or the iFit app.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media shelf (to hold Ipad or similar device).
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs..
  • Lifetime frame, 1 yr. parts and labor warranties.

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Nordic Track GX 4.7

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike has so many options and extras, it really is a nice bike. This recumbent bike is our first pick –TOP PICK – because of all the features and the quality or Nordic Track Reputation at a very good price. It also has some very understated style to boot!

Exerpeutic 2000 High Capacity Magnetic Recumbent Bike – Review

The Exerpeutic 2000 is the same basic bike as the Exerpueutic 4000, only lacking some resistance levels and the Bluetooth capability. So you won’t be able to use the MyCloudFitness app that is used with the 4000 model. But do you really need that anyway? It has all the basics and everything you NEED to start getting in shape comfortably, though it doesn’t have maybe all the things you WANT.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Exerpeutic 2000 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 12 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat with “breath through” technology gives you the most comfortable ride.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media shelf (to hold Ipad or similar device).
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • Ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.

Note: The Ipad in the picture does NOT come with this bike or any other that we are aware of.

 

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Exerpeutic 2000

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike is a basic model, it’s a very comfortable bike. It’s not our first pick… Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, if you are a little older, a little more out of shape, or just really value comfort, then this is probably the bike you want. Also, if you are currently in rehabilitation for some injury and they have you coming in to physical therapy and riding a recumbent bike, you could probably save yourself a trip if you wanted and only a few visits and you’ve probably paid for it.

Make sure you compare this with the Exerpeuitic 4000 so you can see if it’s worth it to you to have the MyFitnessCloud app to track your progress.

Schwinn MY16 230 Recumbent Bike – Review

The Schwinn 230, which is now called the MY16 230 is really just the most current version, the next model will be called the M-17 270 until they change the model schema (which all companies do just to confuse us all). So for the sake of simplicity, let’s just refer to it from here on out as the “230”.

The 230 is basically the black and white or grey LCD screen model of the Schwinn 270. It also has a few less programs, but essentially is the same bike minus a few things like number of preset exercise programs (who uses those anyway??) and a few less levels of resistance and a few more…. let’s look below.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the 230 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 22 preset exercise programs. (270 has 29 programs)
  • 20 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges. (270 has 25 levels)
  • Ventilated, contoured, and cushioned seat gives you the most comfortable ride along with
  • 8 heart rate programs (270 has 9 programs)
  • Three-speed cooling fan
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • MP3 input with in-console speakers
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen or transfer your data via Bluetooth to your favorite fitness apps or the Schwinn Connect™ app.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media shelf (to hold Ipad or similar device).
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  •  USB charging port.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Made of steel materials in gray.
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs..
  • 10 year frame, 2 year mechanical, 1 year electrical, 90 day labor warranties.

You can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Schwinn 230

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike has so many options and extras, it really is a nice bike. It’s not our first pick, it’s our third. Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features, but is significantly less in cost than the Schwinn 270 (our second pick) and even a bit less than this Schwinn 230, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced. If you can’t find a Nordic Track GX 4.7 or you are in love with Schwinn, and you don’t care about a few preset programs or a color LCD screen, then this is your bike.

Exerpeutic 4000 Magnetic Recumbent Bike – Review

The Exerpeutic 4000 is probably the most comfortable recumbent bike and most suitable for seniors or those riding the bike for rehab + exercise. Be aware that the MyCloudFitness App. that is free must be used on your smart phone, ipad or other notebook. SO if you don’t have one of those, then be prepared to buy one to use that app. Of course you don’t need it to track your progress during your workout, but if you want long term statistics, then you will want to use the MyCloudFitness app that they suggest.

 

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Exerpeutic 4000 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 12 preset exercise programs.
  • 24 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat with “breath through” technology gives you the most comfortable ride.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen or transfer your data via Bluetooth to MyCloudFitness mobile app.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media shelf (to hold Ipad or similar device).
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 325 lbs.

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Exerpeutic 4000

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike has a fair amount of options and extras, it’s a very comfortable bike. It’s not our first pick, it’s our 5th.. Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, if you are a little older, a little more out of shape, or just really value comfort and lots of programs and bells and whistles are not your thing, then this is probably the bike you want. Also, if you are currently in rehabilitation for some injury and they have you coming in to physical therapy and riding a recumbent bike, you could probably save yourself a trip if you wanted and only a few visits and you’ve probably paid for it.

Stamina Elite Total Body Recumbent Bike – Review

The Stamina Elite Total Body recumbent bike really isn’t like the rest of the recumbent bikes in that it not only has pedals, but also has rotating hand grips so you can get an upper body workout as well as lower body. Hence the name TOTAL BODY recumbent bike.

As far as the bike part goes, it is a pretty basic model, we’ll go over it below and at the end we’ll discuss who this bike is a good fit for.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Stamina Elite has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 0 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Made of steel materials in gray.
  • Weight capacity: 250 lbs..

 

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Stamina Elite Total Body Fitness

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike has so many options and extras, it really is a nice bike. It’s not our first pick. Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7.

Having said that, the reason this bike was included in the top ten is because of what it offers. It offers the user the ability to use most of the upper body muslces as well as lower body. This bike is in many physical therapy clinics because after surgeries, strokes, etc. many people need to work their whole body and sometimes, they just need to work their upper body portion, which you can do with this bike. The bottom line is this bike is the best when it comes to rehabilitation and unless you have a great medical plan, it can get pricey to visit the physical therapists office a couple times a week just to use this bike. It would be a better investment to actually buy this bike and save money on the office visits.

Now, in case you haven’t reviewed our other reviews on recumbent bikes, this bike is most like the Exerpeuitic 2000 (except it has rotating handle bars for upper body workout), so it’s a real basic model. If you want to track progress, you will need a bike with Bluetooth capabilities (like Schwinn 270, Nordic Track GX 4.7 or the Exerpeutic 4000). Also this bike has the lowest max weight limit at 250 lbs. which could be an issue.

Again we included it because of the upper body workout features, if this is important to you, this is the bike for you.

Exerpeutic 900XL Extended Capacity Recumbent Bike – Review

The Exerpeutic 900XL is the exact same bike as the Exerpeutic 2000, but comes with a wider seat for more comfort. same basic bike as the Exerpueutic 4000, only lacking some resistance levels and the Bluetooth capability. So you won’t be able to use the MyCloudFitness app that is used with the 4000 model. But do you really need that anyway? It has all the basics and everything you NEED to start getting in shape comfortably, though it doesn’t have maybe all the things you WANT.

This is actually the most popular recumbent bike out there.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Exerpeutic 900XL has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 12 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned EXTRA LARGE seat gives you the most comfortable ride.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • Ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 325 lbs.

 

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Exerpeutic 900XL

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike is a basic model, it’s a very comfortable bike. It’s not our first pick… Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, this bike, the 900XL is the most popular bike for a reason and that reason is it is pretty middle of the road of the top picks. It has a moderate amount of programs, a good amount of resistance levels, comfortable extra large seat, can handle a little more weight that the normal 300 lbs., plus it has all the little extras like water bottle holder, over sized pedals with straps..etc. So since most people want to get “the best bang for the buck” they choose this one. You get most of what you want and the price is very low.

Like we’ve said before, our only down side to this is that it does not come with Bluetooth compatibility, which means if you want to track your progress, you have to write it down in an excel spreadsheet or something, rather than use any one of the feature rich 3rd party apps that are made to track progress. When you are not feeling like you’re making progress, but you have the data to show you are, it really helps with motivation.

Make sure you compare this with the Exerpeuitic 4000 so you can see if it’s worth it to you to have the MyFitnessCloud app to track your progress.

Marcy ME 709 Recumbent Bike – Review

The Marcy ME 709 is very similar to the Exerpeutic 1000 recumbent bike only with a smaller price tag and no heart rate monitor. It made the list because of the very small price tag for bikes in this genre’.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the ME 709 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 0 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat.
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Marcy ME 709

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike, the Marcy ME 709 (which is the same as the 1000 model) is a basic model, it’s a very comfortable bike. It’s not our first pick… Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, if you want a recumbent bike for the comfort factor but cannot afford one, this might be what you are looking for as the price tag is the smallest of the best of the bunch. Also, since they are probably all the same basic bike, if you don’t need the added pre-configured workout programs, heart rate monitor, water cup holder, magazine or Ipad (notepad) holder, …etc., then there is really no reason to buy one of the more expensive models.

The only thing that is a bummer, not only with this bike, but with all of them that have no Bluetooth capabilities, is that if you like to track your workouts with a fitness app., you can’t and I don’t know about you, but seeing results when you’re not feeling them, is very helpful for motivation. For that reason I wouldn’t buy any of the bikes without it, UNLESS, I was on a really tight budget and in that case, THIS is the bike I would buy.

Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike – Review

The Exerpeutic 400XL is the same bike as the Exerpueutic 2000 except it folds up for smaller storage and has no preset programs.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Exerpeutic 400XL has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 0 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Exerpeutic 400XL

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike, the Exerpeutic 400XL (which is the same as the 2000 model) is a basic model. The main difference is it’s fold-ability. It’s not our first pick… Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, if you are short on space and need to fold up a bike and put it in a closet, then this is probably the bike you want. It also nice for watching television because the LCD panel is so low and out of the visual field where a television usually sits.

If you like this bike because of the fold-ability but you need more leg room (say you are 6’5″ in height) or you weight more than 300 lbs., check out the Exerpeutic Gold 525XLR which is basically the same bike as this only expands more to fit taller people and is sturdier to fit heavier people ( up to 400 lbs.).

Exerpeutic 1000 High Capacity Magnetic Recumbent Bike – Review

The Exerpeutic 1000 is the same bike as the Exerpueutic 2000 and NOT to be confused with the Exerpeutic 1000 Workfit Desk Station (which we reviewed here), it is just an older model.  We only added it because inevitably someone will ask what the difference is between the 1000 and the 2000 and you can still buy them on Amazon.com It has all the basics and everything you NEED to start getting in shape comfortably, though it doesn’t have maybe all the things you WANT.

If you’ve read the top ten recumbent bike review, then you already know the benefits of training with a recumbent bike as compared to a regular sit up straight and crank your neck bike. So let’s just focus on what the Exerpeutic 1000 has going for it.

This recumbent bike features:

  • 12 preset exercise programs.
  • 8 levels of resistance to match your level of fitness and challenges.
  • Contoured, and cushioned seat with “breath through” technology gives you the most comfortable ride.
  • Heart rate monitor pulse grips
  • Track your progress on the LCD screen.
  • Adjustable seat Perimeter.
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media shelf (to hold Ipad or similar device).
  • Oversized pedals (for no slip operation).
  • Ergonomically-positioned handlebars.
  • Front transport wheels for easy moving and storage
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.

Sometimes it’s better when you can see it as the features are explained:

Check out the Exerpeutic 1000

Final word: While in our main article on recumbent bikes we make a case that virtually all of the bikes on the market seemed to be manufactured by the same company (probably in China) with small variations (the Chinese are now expert at this)… This recumbent bike, the Exerpeutic 1000 (which is the same as the 2000 model) is a basic model, it’s a very comfortable bike. It’s not our first pick… Our first pick is the Nordic Track GX 4.7 because it has almost as many features as the Schwinn 270, but is less in cost, which is rare as Nordic Track is high quality and they are typically much higher priced.

Having said that, if you are a little older, a little more out of shape, or just really value comfort, then this is probably the bike you want. Also, if you are currently in rehabilitation for some injury and they have you coming in to physical therapy and riding a recumbent bike, you could probably save yourself a trip if you wanted and only a few visits and you’ve probably paid for it.

Make sure you compare this with the Exerpeuitic 4000 so you can see if it’s worth it to you to have the MyFitnessCloud app to track your progress.