Buying Guide – How To Buy Best Spin Bikes
Indoor exercise bikes are great pieces of exercise equipment. A stationary cycle can be used for cardio, as a weight loss aid, and to build up strength in your legs. Spinning bikes can be quite expensive, though, so it’s important that you do some research on how to buy the best spin bike, and pick one appropriate to your needs.
How To Buy Best Spin Bikes – An Insane Buying Guide
Spinning bikes for indoor use vary from simple, magnetic-based bikes to ones with friction brakes and strong flywheels. You can spend anything from a few hundred dollars through to a couple of thousand dollars, depending on the features that you want, and how much you care about brand names.
Let’s take a look at a few of the most important things to remember when buying a spinning bike.
Height and Weight
Your height and weight will dictate the type of bike you buy, to an extent. Spinning cycles are adjustable, so you will have a decent amount of leeway, but if you’re very short you will need a more compact bike. If you’re heavier than average then you’ll need to make sure that the bike can safely accommodate you. Not all budget bikes are suitable for people with larger frames.
Most bikes use a flywheel these days, and the bigger the weight of the flywheel, the smoother the action of the bike will feel. Ideally, if you can afford it, you should look for a bike with a flywheel of more than 20kg, and a good bearing too. Low quality bearings make the bike unpleasant to ride, and will cause a lot of vibration and noise.
You may not think it’s important, but it’s a good idea to think about the pedals that you buy. The most common options are ‘basket’ pedals, and then basket pedals with cycling clips for the shoes. Standard basket pedals can be used with any type of shoe, while pedals with cycling shoe clips will need to be used with more specialist shoes. The shoes clip into the pedal, and this stops your feet from slipping off the pedal while you’re cycling.
When you’re riding long distances on the roads, this can be a really nice feature, but for indoor spinning it’s not so much of a requirement. People who do a lot of cycling outside often like to use clips indoors as well, though – just out of habit.
Another thing to look at is the way the bike offers resistance. There are two main types – friction pads and magnetic breaks. Friction braking uses a lever or a knob at the top of the frame that will change how much resistance you encounter by moving the friction pad closer to the flywheel.
Friction bikes are more affordable than magnetic bikes, but the pads will wear down over time and will eventually need replaced – which is why you don’t see them in commercial gyms very often. Magnetic brakes, in contrast, us magnets to make the flywheel harder to turn. These are more expensive, but require less maintenance, so are a better long term option.
You should look at the drive type too. The flywheel can be connected to the crank and the bike’s pedals by a bike or a chain. Lower-end/mid-range indoor bikes use belts, because they’re quiet, low maintenance and relatively easy to adjust. Chain drives are more popular on higher end bikes because they feel more like a real bike.
However, they require a fair bit more maintenance. If you’re just a fitness enthusiast who fancies enjoying something a bit like a spin class in the comfort of your own home, then it makes sense to get a good belt drive bike. If you’re an outdoor cyclist and you want to get some indoor training in, then opt for a belt drive instead.
You may have noticed that some bikes are marketed as ‘indoor cycles’, and others are marketed as spinning bikes. The truth is that these bikes are really all the same sort of thing. The only difference, if any, is in the extra features that the bike might offer.
There’s little difference between an indoor bike at the lower end (with just pedals and an adjustment knob), and some of the higher end models with heart rate monitors, programmable routes, computers to track your best times and distances, etc. A bike is a bike – those extras may make cycling more fun and may make it easier for you to track your performance, but that’s all.
Price and Accessories
Depending on your budget and the brand of bike you’re planning on buying, you might get some accessories – such as a computer, heart rate monitor, clips, etc. You might also want to look at other accessory options – mats to combat vibration, shoes to cycle in, etc. These are optional – unless you are putting the bike upstairs on a hardwood floor where sound would travel, in which case your neighbors would appreciate you getting good mats! But they are things that will make cycling that little bit more fun and enjoyable.
Some great indoor cycling bikes that you should check or read the reviews
- Sunny Health and Fitness Pro
- Sunny Health and Fitness Belt Drive
- Sole SB700 Spin exercise bike
- Keiser M3 Plus Indoor spin bike
- Evo Fitness CX Indoor Cycle
- Fitleader FS1 Stationary spin bike
- Schwinn IC2 Indoor cycling bike
You can spend a lot of money on a spin bike, but if you think about how to buy best spin bike, and pick your priorities carefully, then you will be able to save some money. Not everyone needs all the same features. Choose a bike that does what you need it to do, and that will fit your cycling style and your level of experience, and you can’t go far wrong!
If you plan on spending a lot of time on your bike indoors, and you’re not training to cycle outdoors, look for an exercise bike with a nice comfortable seat. If you’re looking for an indoor version of an outdoor bike, then you should look for something that is a little more traditional in configuration, and that lets you mirror the posture you’d use on your outdoor bike.
At the end of the day, however, anything that lets you exercise is a good thing, so pick whatever you can afford that will fit your home, and that you can use safely and comfortably.