Now you're armed with the right information, it's time to make a shortlist. Here are the questions you should ask yourself before you buy.
Decide what you want from your decision to buy an exercise bike. Are you looking to lose weight, or feel healthier, or keep up with your 'real' cycling during cold and wet winter months?
|IF YOU WANT TO...||TAKE A LOOK AT...|
|Lose weight||An exercise bike with resistance settings and calories burned display.|
|Get fit||Any exercise bike, but a heart rate monitor will help you train.|
|Become stronger||An exercise bike with different resistance settings and programmes to build strength and endurance, such as Hill Climb or Alpine Pass. Alternatively, a recumbent bike will build leg strength.|
|Become faster||An exercise bike with the most common console functions (speed, time and distance) plus cadence will let you build fitness smoothly.|
|Have fun||An exercise bike with a range of different programmes, or that you can link to a videogames console or computer.|
|Train for an event||An exercise bike that lets you set goals and targets, such as distance in a set time or constant cadence.|
Exercise bikes take up a lot of space. In general, allow at least the same space you’d allow for a single bed, with half a metre or so on each side to make sure you can dismount easily. A few bikes also fold up for easy storage.
Simple exercise bikes are great value, and many now include advanced functions to display your speed, time, and distance. But if you want to build or maintain fitness instead of just burn calories, look at magnetic pedalling resistance models that can vary your workout by simulating hills. There are some excellent machines available for the same costs as a couple of weeks' groceries!
An exercise bike as part of a healthy lifestyle will keep your heart healthy. But it won’t exercise your upper body or back muscles much. If you’re not buying any other piece of equipment, add some press-ups, pull-ups, and sit-ups to your exercise routine to round out your workout.
There’s a huge variety of exercise bikes on the market - but the one you choose needs to fit your healthy lifestyle, too.
Sometimes you want to see features side-by-side. It’s easy! When you view any range of exercise bikes - by price, brand, or other criteria - you’ll see a ‘Compare products/Go’ link on the right, with a tickbox for each piece of equipment.
Tick the bikes you’re interested in and hit ‘Go’ - you’ll be shown a handy table comparing all their main features, making it easier to choose. Why not try it right now?