Spin bike buyers guide
Spin bikes can give you an effective and enjoyable cardio workout from the comfort of your own home. Whether you are looking to burn fat, increase your strength and stamina, stay in shape or just improve your overall cardiovascular health, spin bikes provide a great way to help you reach your fitness goals.
The best spin bikes for exercising at home are those which meet your own individual objectives. What do you specifically need from a spin bike? Do you want something that will allow you to follow live spin classes, do you want something simple that easily folds away, do you want a budget friendly spin bike or are you willing to pay through the nose for all the bells and whistles?
There are many modern and stylish spin bikes to choose from, which may seem overwhelming at first. That’s why we have compiled this handy guide showcasing the best spin bikes and what to look out for when on your search.back to menu ↑
What are the best spin bikes?
Here we will take a look at our best spin bikes from the hundreds of spin bike reviews that we have researched and analysed in great detail.back to menu ↑
How to choose the best spin bike for you
There is a reason why spin bikes have become so popular in recent years. The evolution of the home workout and available technology has meant that spin bikes have become one of the must have pieces of fitness equipment for anyone who wants a high impact cardio workout at a time that is convenient for them.
Investing in your own spin bike can save you the gym membership costs and the hassle of travelling, whilst still replicating that studio spin class experience. Here we will take a look at some of the key features to look out for in order to help identify the best spin bikes for your needs.back to menu ↑
Size matters! Why? You can have the best spin bike in the world, but if you don’t have nowhere to keep it then it won’t be of no use to you. Make sure that you identify and measure the space in your home where you wish to keep and use the bike. You should then make sure that any bike that you are considering will comfortably fit into this space.
The majority of spin bikes will have wheels on their base which allows them to be moved around with relative ease. It would be worth thinking about how convenient it would be to manoeuvre the bike in your allocated space and where you plan to store it when not in use. The amount of time you plan on using the bike can help be a deciding factor when choosing a suitable size and checking portability.back to menu ↑
Weight & Height Range
Spin bikes are designed for a wide range of weight and height capacities. The majority of bikes should easily be able to hold users of around 250 lbs (113kg) in weight. Check to make sure that the spin bike has suitable weight limits for anyone who will be using it. Also check the height range shown on the description of the bike to make sure that the users will be able to spin away without any restrictions. Some spin bikes are geared more towards shorter users whereas others can cater to the taller riders.back to menu ↑
Spin bikes can give one the most intensive cardio and muscular workouts of all exercise machines. You will want to make sure that the spin bike can cater to any specific physical limitations that you may have so you avoid any potential discomfort or safety issues during demanding spin sessions.back to menu ↑
Comfort is one of the most important things to consider when choosing the best spin bike for your home gym. If the spin bike is not comfortable, chances are that you will want to avoid using it as much as possible. You want something that will let you exercise away for long periods of time without giving you any soreness.
The best spin bikes will let you adjust the seat and handlebars into a position suitable for people of various shapes and sizes. You will want to make sure that you feel comfortable sat in the seat and can easily reach the handlebars and read the monitor display without straining yourself.
Some spin bikes have toe straps / pedal cages. A snug strap or cage can help to ensure that you are channelling your energy more into forward motion, rather than heat and sweat. They are also an important safety feature to prevent your feet from slipping off of the pedals. Check that the pedal size is suitable for your feet and that the straps can be easily adjusted.back to menu ↑
Another important aspect to look for when choosing a spin bike is the type of resistance used and levels of resistance. Most bikes will come with at least 8 resistance levels. Generally speaking, the more resistance levels there are, the more choice you will have between an easy and hard work out.
You should also consider the needs of anyone else using the bike and how the resistance could influence the potential sell on value in the future.
The location of the knob or buttons to adjust the resistance is also important. They should be in easy to reach place, ideally without requiring you to stop when adjusting.
Magnetic resistance spin bikes can give a smooth and quiet ride that can be set to any resistance level that you wish. Generally, the heavier the flywheel is, the more realistic the ride experience will be.back to menu ↑
The majority of spin bikes will have a built-in electronic console that displays your workout performance data. This should show the most important statistics such as calories burned, distance, speed, reps per minute, cadence, heart rate, etc.
You will want to ensure that the display monitor is user friendly and has all of the features that you need. Some users may be happy with a basic design that has minimal information whereas others may require a more advanced display.
The best spin bikes will have a range of preprogramed workouts that cater to a wide variety of user fitness levels and goals.back to menu ↑
Now that we have covered some of the most import features to look for, perhaps the most important decision you need to make is how much you will spend on your spin bike. You can narrow down the features that are a “must have” and set a limit on the price are willing to consider.
Don’t worry too much, whatever your price range is, there are spin bikes that cater to a wide range of budgets. Even on limited funds, you can find spin bikes which are well-built, comfortable, fully adjustable and suitable for all shapes and sizes.back to menu ↑
Other Key Features
To wrap up this section on what to look for when choosing a spin bike, we will take a look at some of the other key features you may wish to consider;
- Does the bike come assembled?
- Is it easy to put together or will you need help?
- Are clear instructions and tools included?
- What reputation does the company have?
- How good or bad are the customer reviews?
- Does it come with a warranty?
- Is there a bottle holder?
- Is there a smart device holder?
- Does it have a safety stop function?
- Does it require batteries or is it mains operated?
- Does it have Bluetooth functionality?
- Is it compatible with third-party apps?
Types of spin bike
There are three main types of resistance on spin bikes to look out for; magnetic, mechanical and fan-based. The best spin bikes tend to have magnetic resistance as it is quiet, durable, smooth and easily adjustable.back to menu ↑
Magnetic resistance spin bikes provide a consistent resistance with magnetic bars either side of the flywheel that determine the resistance. They offer a greater ability to adjust the resistance level during your workout. Some bikes come with tension knobs, but electromagnetic bikes will enable you to change the level of resistance digitally.
Magnetic resistance spin bikes are ideal for high-speed workouts. They can cost slightly more upfront but are durable and require minimal maintenance which can make them a better purchase in the long run.
They are also very quiet so you are less likely to cause any disturbance to anyone nearby. This means you can watch your favourite shows and listen to music without hearing the bike in operation.back to menu ↑
You can get mechanical resistance in spin bikes that works similar to the brake mechanism on a road bike. They have pads either side of the flywheel that cause friction which determines the resistance. You can increase or decrease the pressure between the flywheel and rubber pads by adjusting a tension knob – just as you would adjust gears on a road bike.
This type of resistance can cause some noise as the pads rub against the flywheel. The pads will require more maintenance such as frequent lubrication and will need to eventually be replaced.back to menu ↑
Fan-based spin bikes incorporate a large fan that rotates via a pulley and belt mechanism as you pedal away. The faster you pedal, the faster the fan rotates. Thus, pedalling fast increases the resistance to the fan blades and makes the workout more difficult.
The fan gives off a nice cool breeze whilst spinning away. Just like magnetic resistance, these bikes require minimal maintenance.back to menu ↑
Benefits of spin bikes
Spin bikes have a huge range of benefits to users of all fitness levels and from all backgrounds. They provide a superb cardiovascular and strength training workout that is fun and has many health benefits. This includes;
- Burning calories
- Losing weight
- Increasing endurance/stamina
- Improving muscular strength
- Toning lower body muscles (legs, buttocks, etc)
- Improving mental health
- Helps prevent or manage health conditions and diseases
- Promotes better sleep
In addition to the above, buying a spin bike can save you money in the long term from gym memberships, spin classes and travelling. There will no longer be any excuses to skip exercise such as bad weather, the gym is busy/closed/too far away, the spin class is cancelled and every other excuse in the book! You will feel more inclined to exercise from the comfort of your own home at a time that suits you.back to menu ↑
Tips for using your spin bike
I know it can be an exciting time getting a brand spanking new spin bike! I loved the day that mine arrived and I have used it on a regular basis ever since. I am proud to say that not one piece of clothing has been hung on it, just a towel for those sweaty spin classes!
Whilst it is an exciting prospect to jump on the bike and spin away at your hearts content, there are a few things that you should consider in order to get the best spin bike experience possible;
- Take your time to setup the bike
- Test a few different positions until you find what’s comfortable for you
- Keep the bike in a suitable location that will encourage you to use it
- Warm up and warm down for a few minutes by lightly spinning on a low resistance
- Pick an exercise program that is designed towards your specific goals
- Start slowly and increase the difficulty as you improve your fitness level
- Stay well hydrated throughout your workout
Buying a spin bike can present a big change in your lifestyle and is one of the first steps to improving your health. They have so many benefits that you cannot really put a price on – strengthening your heart, lungs and overall cardiovascular health.
Compared to some other types of monotonous fitness equipment, a spin bike can present a fun and sociable way to get in shape. They provide a convenient way to burn fat and tone muscle whilst taking up minimal space in your home.
When you are searching for the best spin bikes on the market, it is important to consider your own personal requirements. If you are just looking for general fitness then a budget or middle of the range spin bike could probably be sufficient. However, if you are a serious rider that needs advanced functionality, you would be looking at the more premium spin bikes.
Whatever option you go for, hopefully this best spin bike guide has helped to make it easier for you to make your decision!