We test exercise bikes for exercise range, ergonomics, construction, safety, and more. Prices range from about $200 to $2,000.
Pricier machines generally have sturdier designs and more features, but some bargain-priced machines can offer a good workout.Running is the gold standard for cardiorespiratory fitness, but exercise bikes might help strengthen your legs, hips, and glutes more than running because you can ramp up the resistance to work your muscles harder.
There are two kinds of exercise bikes. The traditional upright type resembles a regular bicycle; a recumbent bike has back support. They provide similar workouts; an upright might work your glutes better because you can fully extend your hips. Because body weight is supported, both types are options for people who have difficulty with balance or have lower-limb injuries. A recumbent might be more comfortable for those with back problems.
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