In the U.S. practically all fitness gyms have their own set of exercise bikes, and people often use them regularly. This type of equipment is prevalent for many decades now probably because of the simplicity and ease of use for the machine yet giving you a really great cardiovascular workout.
You may be more familiar with the upright type of bike as it’s the most common, but there’s another type of bike which is called as the recumbent bike. The upright bike is just like a regular bike but is made stationary and is either missing 1 wheel or even both wheels.
The recumbent bike is very different and may seem strange to you at first as you are lying down and you are going to put your feet on the pedal that is in front of you.
There’s actually another kind of exercise machine that somehow falls into this category and it’s the bike trainer. It’s actually just a stand where you put a real bike in, and it lifts its rear wheel and makes it stable. You can even add resistance to the rear wheel, and that’s what will give you a more powerful workout. It pays to get a great bike trainer as it can handle even the fastest pedaling of a biker. This is a great idea for those who are already comfortable with their own bike and want to use it both indoors and outdoors for their workout.
If you have already decided whether you’d go for the upright bike, the recumbent bike or the bike trainer, you should then choose what model you’d want by checking the features being offered. There are different features you should look for, and the most useful are usually the electronic display and the heart rate monitor.
The heart rate monitor must be interactive and gives you your pulse rate, and it adjusts the intensity of the workout based on that while making sure that you are getting the most from your workout. This means that you no longer have to constantly monitor your own heart rate and make the necessary adjustments to keep your heart rate at the optimum level and not go over or below it.
Electronic display on bike machines must be readable and clear and lets you manually adjust it even while you continue to pedal your way to fitness.
Exercise Bike or Elliptical Trainer: Comparing Features
For decades, gyms and health clubs always have exercise bikes, but it’s only recently that the elliptical trainer came around. The beauty of this trainer is becoming more popular as it became one of the top favorites of people from the young and to the elderly. Usually, you have to even be on the waiting list in gyms before you could use one.
Both exercise bikes and elliptical trainers are great exercise machines. Let’s compare the features of the two machines.
Both the exercise bike and the elliptical trainer are low impact exercises so your joints won’t feel the stress of the workout. Elliptical trainers are oval shaped, and the motion of the exercise is smooth and gliding.
Exercise bikes, on the other hand, can be used even by people who suffer from back pain as it does not stress the spine and back muscles. Exercise bikes are even recommended for patients who just underwent surgery or have joint problems. Exercise bikes and the elliptical trainers have a low impact on the feet, ankles, and knees.
Both exercise machines are great even for beginners who want to start exercising. You can adjust the resistance levels so you’ll have a harder workout. It’s so easy that you can start right away and start from the lowest resistance and move your way up.
Both exercise machines allow you to exercise in a reverse direction as this lets you exercise different leg muscles to give you that all around type of workout.
Now for the difference:
Elliptical trainers let you do the weight bearing type of workout. Exercise bikes don’t have this feature.
Elliptical trainers have handlebars that boost up the type of exercise you get to give you that cross training workout. With the handlebars, you are not just working out your lower body but also with your upper body all at the same time which makes it an even better cardio exercise burning more calories at a shorter time.
Exercising bikes are smaller than the elliptical trainers, and they cost less too.
The exercise bike is a great exercise machine for strengthening the leg muscles particularly the calves and quadriceps which is a specific need for many kinds of sports. By increasing the resistance, you are progressively strengthening your muscles as well.
Figuring out which exercise machine is best for you is depending on how you feel about them. Try them first and choose one if planning to buy one for your home.