Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes in 2021
The recumbent exercise bike is an effective, low-impact cardio machine that offers benefits comparable to those of its upright, stationary cousin. The ergonomic design takes stress off of your neck, shoulders, and supports your lumbar spine, without that after-ride muscle tension and saddle soreness typical of upright cycling.
In keeping with the times, most current recumbent bikes feature technology that controls and records various training regimes and metrics; some models are Bluetooth-capable.
We’ve compiled this quick guide to the best recumbent exercise bikes available to help you find your very own. So, saddle-up and get ready to take these babies for a virtual spin.
- Best Overall: Schwinn Recumbent Exercise Bike Series
- Runner Up: Nautilus Recumbent Exercise Bike Series
- Best Bargain: Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike With Resistance
- Best Low Impact: Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Most Ergonomic: JEEKEE Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Best Capacity: Vanswe Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Best Step-Through: Exerpeutic Easy Step Thru Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Best for Beginners: pooboo Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Best Bluetooth: Exerpeutic 2500 Bluetooth 3 Way Adjustable Desk Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Best Recumbent Exercise Bike
With many features to write home about, it’s no wonder the Schwinn Recumbent Exercise Bike Series stands out as one of the very best recumbent exercise bikes available. You can take advantage of Bluetooth connectivity to sync fitness data with the Schwinn app, and the wide range of preset programs makes it perfect for all levels.
It offers 25 resistance options, and the adjustable fan keeps you cool. It also comes with a heart rate monitor, so tracking your training zones should be easy.
Bluetooth connectivity sync with Schwinn app
25 resistance levels
High speed/inertia drive system
DualTrack LCD display
USB charging port
Media desk for device
Quick Start function
Heart rate monitor does not seem consistent
Anyone who is looking to upgrade their current recumbent bike model should look no further than the Nautilus Recumbent Exercise Bike Series. Here, you can set, track, and monitor progress via the Nautilus app. It boasts 25 resistance levels and 29 customizable programs for every level of rider.
Note: some reviewers claimed that the seat wasn’t as comfortable as expected, so keep that in mind when purchasing.
Are you looking to take your at-home training to new heights? Check out our list of the best vertical climbers on the market right now.
Enhanced Bluetooth connectivity
Set, track, monitor progress via app
DualTrack backlit LCD display console
25 resistance levels
29 customizable workout programs
Maximum 300 pound weight capacity
- Weight91.9 pounds
Explore the World app potential
Track calories and heart rate
Easy to assemble
Seat may not be as comfortable as expected
The well-crafted and quite affordable Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike With Resistance offers eight resistance, an excellent bike for the beginner or casual rider.
The Marcy Bike’s comfortable seat, smooth-operating counterbalanced pedals, and the detailed display panel (although not backlit) have earned it a well-deserved spot on our list.
Ready to step up your home gym game even more? Scope our top stepper machines buying guide.
Eight resistance levels
Heavy dusty construction
Easy to read computer screen
Comfortable and adjustable padded seat
Counterbalanced pedals with safety straps
Tracks time, speed, calories, ODO
- Weight61 pounds
300 pound weight capacity
Built-in wheels for effortless movement
Monitor is not backlit
One feature that stands out about the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Bike is the movable handlebars. Like the pedals, the bike arms attach to the resistance system, making for a versatile, full-body exercise bike.
Moveable handlebars increase versatility
Eight resistance levels
Oversized seat and back
Easily adjustable seat
350 pound maximum weight capacity
- BrandSunny Health & Fitness
- Weight94.8 pounds
Tracks time, distance, speed, calories
Multi-control magnetic resistance
Convenient step-through design
Resistance may not be varied enough for some users
JEEKEE Recumbent Exercise Bike offers eight resistance levels and employs one of the most ergonomic designs available, perfect for anyone suffering from lower back pain. Its weight capacity is 300 pounds, and the seat adjusts to fit riders between 4’9” and 6’5” tall. The tablet holder is also a nice touch, especially for those longer sessions.
For resistance training on-the-go, consider these top-of-the-line resistance bands.
Smooth and quiet operation
8 levels of magnetic resistance
Alarm system with iPad holder
Heart rate monitor
300 pound weight capacity
- Weight66 pounds
9 seat positions
Adjustable pedal straps
4’9” – 6’5” ideal rider height
Tablet holder is not as secure as we hoped
The Vanswe Recumbent Exercise Bike offers one of the most comprehensive resistance systems for the price, and its Bluetooth connectivity sets it apart from other bikes at this price-point. The bike also offers the highest weight capacity of 380 pounds.
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16 magnetic resistance levels
Preset tension option
Fully adjustable design
Digital tracking panel
Bluetooth Smart Technology
380 pound weight capacity
- Weight53 pounds
Fitness app compatible with iOS and Android
Comfortable padded seat
3 year frame warranty
Might not be suitable for anyone taller than 6’2”
Durable and comfortable, the Exerpeutic Easy Step Thru Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike boasts an oversized seat cushion and backrest for optimal comfort; the step-through design means you can climb on with ease.
It offers 16 magnetic tension levels and an impressive 24 preset workout programs, making it perfect for beginners and low-key pros alike. You can track time, distance, and calories.
One thing worth noting is Exerpeutic’s less-than-flattering customer service ratings. It might be a good idea to register the bike warranty.
Want to tone up your core? Peep these ab machines.
Stable rigid metal frame
310 pound weight capacity
Suitable for users between 4’11” and 6’6”
Simple Step-Through design
16 magnetic tension levels
24 preset workout programs
- Weight87.5 pounds
Tracks Time, Distance, Calories
Oversized seat cushion and backrest
Bluetooth connectivity and app compatibility
Poor customer support
The pooboo Recumbent Exercise Bike is a simple, affordable, and beginner-friendly option. The LCD panel displays detailed metrics to help you stay on track with your training goals.
Looking to spice up your fitness regimen? Take a look at our guide to assault bikes.
Eight resistance levels
Comfortable padded seat
LCD display with training metrics
220 pound weight capacity
Adjustable chassis raiser
- Weight55 pounds
Suitable for all levels
Counter balanced pedals
Computer is not very accurate
The Exerpeutic 2500 Bluetooth 3 Way Adjustable Desk Recumbent Exercise Bike features a fully-adjustable desktop so that you can work, read, or binge-watch while exercising. And, true to the name, it’s Bluetooth capable.
This bike offers 14 tension levels, silent operation, and an oversized seat. Fair warning, it’s the heaviest bike on our list by a lot. Consider recruiting a friend to help you move this beast around.
Prefer a more basic setup? Peruse our adjustable workout benches hotlist.
Sliding fully adjustable desktop
Smart CLOUD Fitness Bluetooth functionality
14 tension levels
3 angle adjustable backrest
Comfortable oversized seat
250 pound weight capacity
- Weight2.2 pounds
3 workout goal settings
Multiple fitness tracking metrics
Large, heavy, difficult to move even with wheels
Recumbent Exercise Bike Buying Guide
Features to Look for in Recumbent Exercise Bikes
Design - In choosing the bike best suited to you, let your goals be the guiding force. Basic models may prove more than sufficient for someone whose focus in injury rehabilitation. In contrast, those seeking to supplement a dedicated training regimen may benefit from more nuanced models.
Frame - Look for a bike with a sturdy frame of brushed steel or aluminum. Both materials are known for their longlasting durability. The weight capacity of most recumbent exercise bikes hovers between 220 and 380 pounds.
Frames with step-through configurations are the easiest, least gymnastic to navigate.
Footprint - Upright bikes do hold one thing over recumbents — the footprint. The nature of the design means that recumbent exercise bikes occupy more area, an essential consideration if you're working with meager floor space.
Resistance - The majority of recumbent bikes house eight levels of resistance at the minimum; some offer as many as 25 levels. The greater a machine's resistance span, the more you can keep pushing your limits.
Console - If you're someone who likes to track a variety of metrics during your exercise, you'll want a digital readout console. Typical bike consoles feature all the standard metrics — time, distance, speed, and energy expenditure. Less common, but still widely available, is an odometer function.
Consoles also house a variety of preset programs, useful if you are unsure of where to start.
Secondary Features - Transport wheels, holders for cups and personal items, handlebar-integrated heart rate monitors, and adjustable seats are pretty standard secondary elements.
More advanced models boast Bluetooth connectivity and a smartphone app that helps track your fitness by pulling data from the bike.
Recumbent Exercise Bike FAQ
Q: What is a recumbent bike?
A: A recumbent bike is an exercise bike that offers more ergonomic seating that the traditional upright bike. The backrest and large seat encourage the rider to sit recumbently, which alleviates pressure on the lumbar spine, neck, and shoulders, and won't leave you saddlesore.
Q: What is the difference between a recumbent bike and an upright bike?
A: While both recumbent and upright bikes provide similar results, there are a few distinctions between the two. The most obvious is that recumbent exercise bikes have a backrest and larger seat compared to upright exercise bikes. This configuration is especially beneficial for those suffering from chronic pain and inflammatory diseases and has proven useful in injury rehabilitation.
Q: Can you lose weight on a recumbent bike?
A: Besides the overall design, the mechanics of a recumbent bike do not stray too far from upright bicycles. You can expect the same potential for weight loss and calorie burning as you would a regular exercise bike, especially if you take advantage of the range of resistance levels.
Q: What are the benefits of a recumbent bike?
A: The best recumbent exercise bikes come with a range of benefits regardless of who you are and what your skill level. These benefits include:
- Improved comfort and support.
- Low impact on joints and muscles for fewer injuries and injury rehabilitation.
- Weight loss and stamina training.
- Suitability for beginners, seniors.
- Fitness tracking through distance, time, speed, and calories.
Q: How long should I ride a recumbent bike?
A: Daily exercise is something everybody should aim for, but it's often difficult to motivate yourself to go to the gym. However, with a recumbent exercise bike, you can get a sufficient workout from the comfort of your home.
However, you might be unsure how much exercise to do, especially if you're not used to doing any activity at all. As recumbent exercise bikes are cardio, the recommended amount is at least 30 minutes, as this will give you enough time to burn energy and get a sweat on. Of course, as 30 minutes is the minimum, you can go for as long as you're able.
Despite this, you shouldn't work yourself too hard, as this could cause aches and pain the next day. If you are not familiar with recumbent cycling or regular exercise, it's best to start small, especially with the tension levels, and then gradually increase depending on what you believe you are capable of doing.
Q: Do recumbent bikes burn belly fat?
A: Recumbent bikes will burn calories, and this enables you to lose weight all over your body, which includes your stomach. However, you cannot rely solely on cardio and recumbent exercise bikes to flatten the tummy and burn belly fat.
You must maintain a balanced diet and combine your cycling with other workouts, such as lifting weights and performing bodyweight exercises such as pushups, situps, crunches, and planks.
- Recumbent Bicycle - Wikipedia