Whether you are looking to lose a few of those extra pounds, or you simply want to stay fit for an overall feeling of well-being, gym enthusiasts will tell you that cardio is one of the best ways to go about it. But in most times, the intense, uncomfortable hours on exercise bikes and treadmills – especially if you suffer from back pain – only end up leaving you exhausted and bitter. Well, luckily, there’s now a way to achieve all this while enjoying your favorite sitcom at the comfort of your home with recumbent exercise bikes!
Recumbent bikes are like the gentle version of exercise bikes. You see, unlike ordinary upright bikes, recumbent bikes feature a unique reclined design that makes them way more comfortable to use. They have in place comfortable ergonomic chairs with backrests and padded cushioning, which provide lumbar support, therefore eliminating any stress you’d normally experience on your knees and ankles.
So, whether you are looking to get an idea of what you’ll be working with, or you’ve already made your choice to settle for one, here are some of the best recumbent exercise bikes.
Top 10 Recumbent Exercise Bikes of 2020 Reviewed
1. Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike ME- 709Best Drain Cleaner for Grease
First, on our list, the Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike is really quite a simple machine. Its design is centered on simplicity, prioritizing on strong performance over unnecessary amenities. With this, you get that great, comfortable work out experience, but at a really affordable price. The bike features its signature step-through frame, which optimizes the ease of mobility and quick mounting and dismounting. It also makes it appear a little smaller and less bulky than most other models; therefore, if you fall a little short on space in your house, Marcy would be the perfect fit. Its construction is heavy-duty, consisting of 14 gauge steel tubing and powder-coated finish.
The machine works using magnetic resistance mechanisms. With this, it is able to offer up to 8 levels of magnetic resistance. It also has tension knobs in place that let it simulate riding on different levels of terrains, so you get to customize your workout experience. At the front is a mini, easy to read LCD screen that shows you your time, speed, calories burned and distance covered. And we can’t go without mentioning the ergonomically designed seat completed with high-density foam to enhance your comfort. Its pedals are also designed to offer foot support and control together with foot straps that can be adjusted for the best fit.
- Affordable price tag
- The simplistic design makes it less bulky
- Solid heavy-duty construction
- The straps on the pedals may not accommodate sneakers
- The instructions are a little vague
- Highest resistance may not be as suitable for high-intensity workouts
2. EXERPEUTIC 300SR Heavy Duty Foldable Recumbent BikeBest Hair Drain Cleaner
The Exerpeutic 300SR prides itself on being a foldable recumbent bike. What this means is, once you are done with your daily work out, you can easily fold it up and store it away in your closet. This will come especially handy for small apartments of home spaces. Well, despite its compact size, the recumbent bike features the same benefits you’d expect on a full-sized recumbent bike. This includes a precision-optimized flywheel with 8-level magnetic controls, an easy to read LCD display to track your calories, time, speed, distance end heat rate as well as a heavy-duty construction that allows it to hold as much as 300 pounds.
The beautiful machine is also among the most lightweight recumbent bikes you will find out there. It can double up as a desk bike on an adjustable height desk, and with a semi-recumbent design, entry and exit is simply a breeze. For comfort, you get a large seat cushion and backrest plus, it uses a quiet v-belt transmission system to guarantee a noiseless workout session.
- Compact, easily storable
- Heavy-duty; can handle up to 300 pounds
- Quiet operation
- Poor assembly instructions
- No backlighting on the screen
- The bike can’t be easily moved or adjusted without removing the locking pins or completely folding the bike up
3. Schwinn Recumbent Bike SeriesBest Drain Cleaner for Grease
Schwinn is a brand that is widely known for the quality and overall performance of its products, which is why our next unit, the Schwinn Recumbent Bike Series, comes so highly recommended.
The bike boasts of having a little bit of everything to support this notion, with little extras that make it stand out from its company of peers. One such outstanding feature you’ll find is its unique go track, which allows multiple users to set their profiles so you can monitor your exercise progress. Also in place are console speakers with an MP3 input that allow you to play your favorite music as you cycle and USB ports to keep all your gadgets at full battery.
The bike is perfectly fine-tuned to give the best exercise experience. It has in place a high speed, inertial drive system so you can pedal harder against more resistance. The system also helps guarantee smoother and quieter workouts. In place, you’ll find a dual-track LCD screen with good backlighting so you can see all your programs and track your goals. You also get up to 22 preset works out programs, including 9 profiles, 2 fitness tests, 8 heart rate control, and 1 quick start. Another fine perk to its design is the seat rail slider system that lets you customize the fit for every user.
- Has a large array of handy features
- The seat rails slider system makes it adjustable to all sizes
- Smooth noiseless pedaling
- Some users claim that the display as rudimentary; falling low of expectations
- Has a frequent loud beeping that may be annoying
- The power cord is poorly positioned
4. Nautilus Recumbent Bike SeriesBest Clog Remover
The Nautilus Recumbent Bike Series is built for the more contemporary or modern user in mind. It features inbuilt Bluetooth syncing capabilities that you can pair with a smartphone app and track your progress through. The bike itself features a sleek design that looks good and blends easily with any modern décor. It comes with all the comprehensive specs, including an adjustable seat, a supportive back, and a display screen. It especially prides itself on its onboard computer.
The computer features up to 29 workout programs and displays all the necessary information you’ll possibly need, like the speed and intensity of your workout. It comes with a RideSocial app as well, so you can ride alongside all your friends in virtually real-time. Additionally, you also get intuitively positioned handlebars together with resistance controls and a 3 piece chrome crank system integrated with weighted pedals for a more productive experience.
- Sleek futuristic design
- Bluetooth connectivity with an app to track progress
- Easy assembly
- The seat is not as comfortable according to users
- poorly positioned wheels
- poor programming on app especially layout
5. Exerpeutic 900XL Extended Capacity Recumbent BikeBest Drain Cleaner for Grease
Yet another unit from the Exerpeutic brand is the 900XL Extended Capacity Recumbent Bike. And as with every other Exerpeutic product, you can expect it to deliver high-quality output at a relatively affordable price tag. As implied by its name, the unit boasts of extended capacity, which means it is capable of supporting just about anyone. Therefore, whether you are 5’’2’’ or 6’’4’’, the machine will adjust to you, so you get to exercise in ultimate comfort.
The bike features an 8-level magnetic tension control system, common to most high-end recumbent bikes out there. With this, you can control your workout intensity depending on your physical needs. The machine comes with a fairly large LCD screen and has a 300-pound weight limit. Another handy thing is the transportation wheels that allow for easy transportation.
- Easy, straight forward assembly process
- Affordable price
- Extended capacity for tall or short individuals
- The seat tends to get uncomfortable after lengthy use
- Not Bluetooth compatible
- No place to secure a phone or tablet while working out
6. Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent BikeBest Alkaline Drain Cleaner
There are plenty of recumbent bikes making rounds out there. However, very few of them offer you the additional option of cross-training and working out your arms simultaneously. Well, with the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Bike, you can achieve this. The machine has movable handlebars in place, which work in combination with the foot pedals for an all-rounded training session. Despite this, it’s also surprisingly one of the most affordable bikes you’ll find out there.
The bike features your usual 8 adjustable gears for more options on resistance training on both your arms and legs. It has an ergonomic seat paddle with a backrest, made both comfortable with a weight capacity of a whopping 350 pounds, which is by far the most we’ve seen by far. The seat can be adjusted to your optimal distance to the handlebars and pedals. The bike also has other extra features like a pulse sensor that keeps track of your heart rate as you exercise. It has an LCD display in place, well-positioned such that it is really easy to read.
- Comfortable oversized seat
- You get to work out your arms too
- Zero noise
- The controller is uncomfortably close to the operator
- Its upper body arms travel far; might be a little hard for shorter people to access
- You have to adjust the seat all the way down if you are short
7. MaxKare Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise BikeBest Bead Drain Opener
The MaxKare Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike stands out from other bikes you’ve seen so far. This is because it features a more upright design. This, in turn, allows it to be more space-efficient, so much that it can fold to up to 1/2 its original size. Despite this, the bike still offers all the benefits you’d expect from a recumbent bike. It is still as equally as comfortable, with special magnetic resistance mechanisms that enhance a more stable, quiet, and low-maintenance experience.
Another feature that will stand out with the device is the arm and leg resistance bands. With this, you get to target and other various muscles of your body while maintaining a wider range of motion. Its seats are padded, fully adjustable, and can hold a weight of up to 330 lbs. Also inclusive is a digital monitor that lets you track your speed, time distance, and heart rate. And for durability, it is reinforced using sturdy steel on its frame so you can be sure it will take you through the long haul.
- Folds up really efficiently
- Really smooth and quest operation
- Easy to move around
- Users claim that its backrest is positioned a bit far away
- Lacks conclusive setup instructions
8. 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent BikeBest Drain Cleaner for Septic Systems
The 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike claims to be one of the most comfortable recumbent bikes out there today. Well, much the statement may come out like a gimmick that all other brands will claim; this one has a lot going for it to back it up. Starting with its highly compact frame, at only 48’’ * 27’’, the Elite RB is significantly shorter than other models. This allows it to easily fit in small areas. This design also gives it an overall robust look and feel to it, able to support the weight of up to 350 lbs, which is impressive by any standard.
The good people at cardio 3G went the extra mile of crafting the seat in a rather intuitive manner. It features oversized cushioning and a vented backrest. It is also fully adjustable in such a way that you can not only move it to a suitable height, but you can also adjust the angle of the backrest and the seat itself. Other features include 12 workout programs, 16 levels of resistance, a chest-strap heart-rate-monitor, and 4-user profiles, so you can save your personal work out. Its console is fairly easy to operate.
- Compact frame occupies a small footprint
- Fully adjustable seat for more comfort
- Smooth and quiet operation
- Not compatible with a fitness app
- On-screen programming may be hard to get around at first
9. Circuit Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Exercise BikeBest Liquid Drain Cleaner
At first glance, it is impossible not to immediately gravitate towards the Circuit Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike. The incredible piece of machinery simply looks well crafted. And indeed, it has the features to support it. The piece is built like a tank. It features a heavy-duty steel frame that is not only scratch and chip resistant but also supports the weight of up to 300 lbs. It has a flawless step-through design that facilitates one of the easiest entry and exit motions.
The Circuit Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike is made to cater to enthusiasts at different levels too. With 15 workout programs in place, you get to personalize your training to your intensity level. The bike also has textured pedals in place, with straps to secure your feet in place. With two pairs of contoured handles in place, you get a much comfortable grip when either sitting up or laying back further. It also has one of the largest LCD displays, with intuitively positioned controls to easily control and keep track of your settings. Its seat can be moved backward or forward depending on your height; plus, you can also adjust the elevation to get the setting just right.
- High-quality, sturdy construction
- Belt drive I smooth
- Has many setting levels to choose from
- No documentation to maneuver through the controls
- Plug awkwardly positioned in the front
- Pain to assemble
10. MaxKare Recumbent Exercise BikeBest Drain Cleaner for Grease
This next recumbent model is brought to you by MaxKare, which is a giant in the recumbent exercise bike industry. Safe today, you can rest assured of its quality. You can also rest easy because of the ergonomic seat on this fine piece, which is specially crafted and complete with a high-density sponge for maximum comfort. The seat is fully adjustable too, and will, therefore, fit almost any user.
The recumbent bike also has vinyl foam padding on it handles, so you get a solid grip as you work out. Its LCD monitor is also made easy to use so you can keep track of all your exercise stats with ease. Another nice touch is the iPads holder. With this, you can set up your iPad or foldable laptop and enjoy all your motion pictures or music just the way you like it. To top it all off, the MaxKare also has transportation wheels in place, so you can move your exercise freely to any room.
- Easy to use and adjust
- The console uses AA batteries, therefore, doesn’t have to be plugged in
- Very quiet operation
- Much as the seat is ergonomic, it may come off as a little small/snug
- the instruction manual can be difficult to interpret
Choosing The Best Recumbent Exercise Bike – The Ultimate Buying Guide
What Is A Recumbent Bike?
Let’s start with the basics. What’s exactly is a recumbent bike? This is not the same as typical exercise bikes. It still takes the form of stationary bikes; only, in this case, they feature a laid back design that lets you actually sit back as you exercise. What you get from this, is a more intense, yet low impact workout.
These bikes take some weight off your lower back and are so comfortable that you can get to do other things like watch television or read books while getting your cardio.
When choosing a recumbent bike, there are a few factors that you need to consider. We shall go over some of these so you can stand a better chance of getting the best value for your money.
Size And Fit: Can It Accommodate Your Weight And Height?
This is one of the first things you should consider when selecting a bike. This includes the size of the machine and how well it will fit inside your home. It also refers to how well it will accommodate your individual height and weight. Most units are bulky, including ones with small footprints; therefore, you should still expect them to occupy a significant portion of your space. Check for wheels, which will facilitate easy movement.
Most units will also come with a weight capacity, which refers to the amount of weight the machine can handle. Most of our selected models range from 250-350 lbs., which is relatively good. And when it comes to height, many of our top selections can be adjusted to fit almost any sized individual.
Ride Comfort: What Are The Features That Enhance Comfort?
The main reason why people go for recumbent bikes is because of their comfort. And comfort will mostly be determined by the shape of the frame. Here, the seat itself should first of all feature an ergonomic design and ventilated backrest. With this, you get healthy back support, plus it prevents overheating of the seat during a lengthy workout. It should have a frame that facilitates easy mounting and dismounting.
If you happen to have problems with your back, you should also check that the seat is cushioned or well padded. You’ll also find recumbent handlebars on some models which are often incorporate pulse sensors so you can monitor your heart rate during monitors. You should also check for any other adjustments like seat angles and the pedal position to enhance your overall comfort. A good bike should keep you in a neutral position throughout the ride.
Budget: You Don’t Need The Most Expensive Model!
A recumbent bike, like any other piece of gym equipment, is an investment. And when making any investment, it is important that you set aside a certain budget. You can get recumbent bikes that are as cheapest $150, and you can get others that go up to $5000.
As you may expect, you stand to get higher quality and a wider array of accessories from the expensive models. Now some of them tend to be overpriced in that you can find more affordable models having the same features. For this reason, we have chosen our bikes with this in mind, bringing you the very best in terms of price to quality ratio to suit your budget.
Work Out Programming and Adjustment Options
Most modern models will often feature a mini-computer with an LCD display, containing inbuilt programs that may come in handy during your work out. They often include a user profile that you can save to keep track of your progress and metrics such as the ride intensity, your heart rate, distance covered.
It is important that you check that your machine has as many of these programs as possible for a more convenient experience, and to enjoy a good number of exercises right at home. However, this doesn’t mean that you dismiss all the bikes without these flashy displays. If these features are not important to you, you can opt to settle for the cheaper, more simplistic models and still get equally outstanding workout experiences.
The bikes will also feature certain adjustment options like several resistance levels. Here, the computer simulates different terrains and steepness that, in turn, affect the intensity of your workout. The resistance levels will often range from 5 to even 40 in more advanced models. In this case, the more resistance levels, the better
Ride Noise: Don’t Wake The Neighbors!
Some bikes produce a lot of noise during use, and you definitely don’t want that. You can determine this by checking for user reviews on the product. Some models will also have certain mechanisms specially intended to reduce noise, such as magnetic resistance to the flywheel. We’ve specified such models in our reviews, so you’ll get to single out the best silent operators out there.
Recumbent bikes are really quite unique machines. The main idea behind them is to make comfort a priority during workouts. By so doing, it encourages endurance in that you’ll find yourself easily working out for longer periods without fatigue.
We’ve based our top selection on vast studies on modern recourse, manufacturer recommendations, and expert suggestions, thus guaranteeing that anyone you pick will be satisfactory in delivering the required output, making it the perfect fitness gift for any fitness enthusiast. All in all, if a fun, effortless workout is what you are looking for, then a recumbent bike is just what you need. All that is left now is to saddle up and pedal your way to fitness!