Best Recumbent Bike Review – Top 5 Fittest List for Aug. 2017
Upright stationary bikes have been a popular means of exercising at home for a long time, but the entire field underwent a momentous change with the invention of the recumbent bike.
It allowed people to do their workouts in the perfect training position in order to maximize the cardio benefits while burning the greatest number of calories – and not ending up with a sore back. In recent years, spin bikes have been all the rage, but recumbent models continue to offer a great workout at what’s often a much more palatable price.
If you’re one of those who doesn’t want to tackle the often-arduous task of spinning, here’s our updated compilation of the top 5 best recumbent exercise bike reviews.
1. Nautilus R614 Recumbent Bike
The Nautilus R614 Recumbent is a lot of training bike for the money. The R614 features a classic recumbent design with the rider positioned at a 20 percent angle above the pedals. This isn’t to say the bike is boring. The R614 comes with a load of bells and whistles. Features include a USB charging port so you can track and upload workouts to a fitness program online, a fan system to keep you cool, and even an acoustic speaker system to provide you with clear sound during your workout.
As for workouts, you can choose between 22 of them with the Nautilus R614 and there are 20 possible levels of resistance to each program, giving you more than 440 different workouts to choose from. The R614 also comes with an LCD system designed to track 13 workout measurements, all of which can be viewed real time while training.
Designers have included a heart rate monitor on the seat handles, so you can adjust your effort to stay within a targeted heart rate zone at any time during the ride. A vented seat helps keep you cool as well, which is no small thing when working out on a sweltering summer day.
The Nautilus R614 is a solid, sturdy bike that you can count on for years. If you are looking for a well-built recumbent bike with a lot of bells and whistles, the R614 is hard to beat.
The specifications for the Nautilus R614 Recumbent Bike:
- Dimensions: 67.8 x 28 x 12.5 inches
- Maximum User Weight: 300 pounds
- Weight: 93 pounds
- Warranty: Ten years on frame, two years on mechanical parts, one year on electrical parts
2. FitDesk v2.0 Desk Exercise Bike with Massage Bar
…and now for something a little different: the FitDesk v2.0 Desk Exercise Bike.
Our bodies are designed to be active, and sitting at a desk for extended periods while working is very unhealthy. The sedentary sitting position can lead to cancer, Type 2 diabetes, deep vein thrombosis, and cardiovascular disease, according to one study in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The solution is to either get up and walk around every few hours or move while working. The FitDesk v2.0 focuses on the move-while-you-work approach.
The FitDesk v2.0 is a combined recumbent bike and desk. The “desk” is actually a desktop mounted on the bike in place of handlebars. A non-slip material coats the desktop, so you can place paperwork or a laptop on it without worrying about anything falling off while riding. The bottom of the platform consists of two rolling pads designed to support your arms, to avoid elbow and shoulder fatigue. LCD display and control pads are located at the top of the platform. To get a workout, you simply select a workout program, start pedaling and get to work. Don’t feel like working or need a break? Keep pedaling while you surf the web, watch videos or listen to music.
An important thing to know about this FitDesk offering is that it’s the second version of the recumbent bike/desk. Any new product of this type will have inevitable design issues, and the first version of the FitDesk certainly did with the lack of arm supports being a significant problem. The new version 2.0 incorporates design solutions to this and other problems nicely, making the bike a great option for people who need to exercise but simply can’t get away from the desk.
Key specs for the FitDesk v2.0 Desk Exercise Bike with Massage Bar:
- Dimensions: 45 x 28 x 16 inches
- Maximum User Weight: 250 pounds
- Weight: 45 pounds
- Warranty: One year
3. Sunny Health and Fitness Pink Magnetic Recumbent Bike
Recumbent bikes are not particularly stylish. They tend to come in either battle gray or Darth Vader black. The Sunny Health and Fitness Pink Magnetic Bike aims to bring a little light to the recumbent bike niche. As the name suggest, the bike is painted with a light pink and gray color pattern; a stylish combination. While recumbent bikes theoretically should be stored away after every workout, the vast majority of us leave the bikes out where guests can see them. If you fall in this category, the pink design is a nice look.
Of course, the best looking recumbent bike is useless if it doesn’t provide a good workout. Despite its sleek look, this recumbent bike does just that. With eight levels of resistance, the sweat will be pouring as you pump away on the pedals while watching the shows you have saved on the DVR. As an added advantage, you can peddle backward to target different leg muscles and even your abs while riding. There is an LCD display for speed, distance, pulse, time and calories burned, as well as a heart rate sensor, and the adjustable seat and pedal straps make this a comfortable ride for a very low price.
Key specs for the Sunny Health and Fitness Pink Magnetic Recumbent Bike:
- Dimensions: 35 x 50 x 11 inches
- Maximum User Weight: 265 pounds
- Weight: 49 pounds
- Warranty: 90 days
4. Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike
Many people purchase recumbent bikes so they can watch television while riding. Unfortunately, recumbent bikes often have a low seat position, making it difficult to see over the LCD display on the front of the bike. The designers of the Exerpeutic 400XL have recognized this problem and found a solution. The large front LCD display is gone. In its place, designers have placed a smaller display on the lower frame between the rider’s legs, tracking calories burned, distance traveled, time, speed and heart rate. When riding the bike, there is nothing to block the view in front of you, making this a perfect bike for watching television while working out.
The 400XL uses a flywheel and V-belt drive propulsion system with eight levels of resistance. The use of a belt mechanism is important because it produces almost no noise while riding. This near-silence contrasts nicely with bikes that use chains or wheel fan systems which make so much noise it is difficult to think straight, much less hear your show while riding.
One of the aspects of this bike we particularly love is the seat. Road bike seats can be as hard as granite. For some unknown reason, recumbent bike manufacturers often use similar seats and after only 20 minutes of riding your derriere can feel like it went through a fraternity paddling ceremony. The designers of the Exerpeutic 400XL have dealt with this issue by providing a large, contoured seat cushion. You can ride for an hour feeling none the worse for wear – except, of course, for the calorie-burning exhaustion you’re seeking in the first place.
Key details of the Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike:
- Dimensions: 33 x 46 x 19 inches
- Maximum User Weight: 300 pounds
- Weight: 43 pounds
- Warranty: One year limited
5. Schwinn 230 Recumbent Exercise Bike
We close with the Schwinn 230 Recumbent Exercise Bike. With more than 100 years of bike design experience, Schwinn knows how to build bikes with all the features a rider needs, placed in locations on the frame that make sense. The 230 certainly continues this tradition.
The 230 is a large, full-featured recumbent bike of near-fitness club quality. The bike provides riders with an LCD display which looks like it came out of a space shuttle flight. You can track more than ten different workout measurements while you take on the challenge of riding through one of the 20+ workout programs, and you can adjust the resistance level of each program up to 20 different levels, making it highly unlikely you will ever need a new bike as your fitness level improves.
Designers of the 230 also included little features which you will enjoy as you use the bike more and more. You can track and upload your workout to the Schwinn site or any fitness program online using a USB port. The seat bottom and back of the bike are vented to help keep you cool while working through the last half of each workout. The pedal system uses a belt drive which remains quiet, so you don’t have to turn the volume on the television up high enough to wake aliens on another planet. All in all, the details add up to a great recumbent. If you are looking for a classic recumbent bike with all the modern features, the Schwinn 230 Recumbent Exercise Bike is an excellent choice.
The specifications for the Schwinn 230 Recumbent Exercise Bike:
- Dimensions: 50 x 64 x 27 inches
- Maximum User Weight: 300 pounds
- Weight: 81.6 pounds
- Warranty: Ten years frame
The other alternative if you are interested, are the Top 5 Best Spin Bikes.