Ok, so we know a treadmill is going to be better for your knees in the long term than running out on the road, and on top of that you can use a treadmill indoors in any weather, so when it’s not great out you can still get your exercise in! But what about the alternatives to a treadmill? Perhaps you prefer cycling for instance? Well there are loads of options here as well, for instance: upright exercise bikes, recumbent exercise bikes or spin bikes? What are the benefits and disadvantages of each?
Well in brief, you will generally get the best cardio workout from a spin bike, more muscle gain in the legs from a standard upright exercise bike and less damage to your bones with a recumbent bike. Each has a particular purpose you see, all still give you a cardio workout as well! Our preference however will be for a recumbent bike, as this will be the easiest for most people to use. Generally they don’t take up much more space than a normal exercise bike, and in our opinion an hour will pass much more quickly on a recumbent bike as there is less stress on the body joints, and therefore spending longer time on a recumbent exercise bike won’t ache as much as with the other two, but just what are your options?
Our number one recommendation is the Nautilus R616 recumbent bike. This little gem is a snip at around $550. Strong and sturdy, with 29 individual training programmes, and data collection connectivity so you can keep a track of your performance over time, this is our recommendation for the best recumbent exercise bike. All that whilst you can sit back and watch your TV. We like Nautilus equipment, and we definitely like the R616! We also took a look at the Nautilus R614 and Nautilus R618, which come it at around $350 and $800 respectively, with similar overall packages. Take a look at our review to see why we opted for the Nautilus R616 in the end.
If you’re looking at Schwinn you want a trusted name with a good price tag. The Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bike may be a good place to start. At a shade under $400, and with the solid Schwinn name and reputation for quality home gym equipment you really couldn’t go far wrong with this affordable and reliable recumbent bike. There’s not a lot to choose between this and the Nautilus 614 though, so maybe look in to both machines before making your mind up, after all the Nautilus 614 recumbent bike is around $350.