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Schwinn 270

Recumbent Exercise Bikes For Weight Loss

Recumbent Bike WorkoutThe recumbent bike, a staple in most gyms, is often overlooked as a serious weight loss tool.

Are we right to dismiss them as an effective piece of fat burning equipment?

Or, are recumbent exercise bikes good for weight loss?

The recumbent cycle provides a much more comfortable exercise experience than most other cardio equipment.

It also impacts the joints much less than most other forms of cardio. In particular, the knees, which can take a pounding from the treadmill and even the upright bike. [1]

The extra comfort of a recumbent bike is the reason many people feel it is inadequate for a good calorie burning workout.

The “no pain, no gain” mantra has people believing that such levels of comfort cannot possibly be effective for weight loss.

Are they correct, or can you burn enough calories to lose weight with a recumbent cycle?

 

Advantages Of A Recumbent Bike

Before we can properly judge the recumbent bike on its ability to help an individual lose weight, we must weigh up some of the pros and cons of using one.

The most obvious benefit is the extra back support provided by the seat of a recumbent bike. The backrest promotes better posture by eliminating the need to be hunched over a set of handlebars, like on an upright bike.

While we are on the subject of the seat, the overall comfort provided by the larger seat is a huge plus. Being more comfortable, generally, means that longer workouts are more manageable. A definite bonus!

In our review of the best recumbent bikes, you will be pleased to find more comfort and convenience features.

As mentioned earlier, the recumbent cycle can also reduce the load on the knee joints. The low impact nature of a recumbent bike reduces the risk of injury. Staying healthy is a must if long-term weight loss is the goal.

As a result of all of these benefits, we may be inclined to feel that the recumbent bike doesn’t work the muscles as much as the alternatives.

However, it has actually been shown to provide similar peak muscle activation in the lower body. [2]

 

Disadvantages Of Using A Recumbent Bike

Clearly, the recumbent cycle has a host of benefits.

It’s only fair that we address some of the possible drawbacks before deciding if the recumbent bike can be useful for losing weight.

The main disadvantage will seem a little hypocritical. I stated earlier that the backrest on the seat is a benefit. However, it can also be seen as a drawback too.

Using a backrest means that the core muscles aren’t being utilized as much to support the trunk. This may or may not matter to an individual. If the main goal is a cardio workout and not a core workout, this isn’t likely to be an issue.

Fewer upper body muscles are used on a recumbent cycle as well. This follows on from the point about less core muscle activation and the same guidelines apply.

Meaning, the user will probably be looking for a cardio workout, not an upper body workout. So, using the upper body isn’t necessarily important.

 

Are Recumbent Exercise Bikes Good For Weight Loss?

Now that the advantages and disadvantages of using a recumbent cycle have been covered, we can discuss whether or not they are effective for losing weight.

Firstly, we need to understand exactly what is needed for weight loss.

Without going too in-depth, in order to lose weight, the body needs to be burning more calories than it is taking in each day.

Calories are ingested through the diet and are burned up through activity. This is where the exercise comes in.

Increasing daily activity levels will increase the total number of calories burned. Burning more calories each day should lead to weight loss, as long as ingested calories are being controlled by a sensible nutrition plan.

So, we know we need to burn enough calories if losing weight and burning fat are the target. Can the recumbent bike burn enough calories?

In short, yes it can.

Any piece of equipment that has the ability to challenge your cardiovascular system can be a tool for burning extra calories. Recumbent cycling can certainly be used to challenge your heart and lungs effectively.

A recumbent bicycle also uses the relatively large muscles of the lower body against resistance. Working large muscle groups, like the legs, will burn a much higher number of calories than smaller muscle groups will.

When we consider how the recumbent bike couples cardio training with the use of large muscle groups, it is obvious to see its weight loss potential.

However, it can depend on how you use it.

 

How To Use A Recumbent Bike For Weight Loss

This is where many people go wrong and give the recumbent cycle a bad name.

The rather unfortunate fact, from a weight loss perspective, is that recumbent cycles usually have a television placed right in front of the user.

Add the extra comfort of a large seat with a backrest, and it becomes very tempting to sit and watch our favorite shows as we revolve the pedals, just enough, to let the machine know we are still using it.

This style of slow, time consuming cardio exercise just isn’t efficient. We need to up the intensity if we want to get the very most out of the recumbent bike for weight loss.

Sure, calories will be burned during slower cardio sessions. The problem is that it will take a very long time to burn any significant number of calories using this method.

On the other hand, high-intensity training or “H.I.T”, helps to burn a higher number of calories per minute. Meaning, you can get a lot out of a shorter workout.

One added benefit of sticking to more H.I.T style training is that it’s been shown to continue burning calories after the workout has finished. [3]

Extra calories can be burned for up to 24 hours after the initial workout. That does not happen with a slower, more “traditional” cardio workout.

Therefore it makes so much more sense to be performing high-intensity training when the main goal is losing weight.

Fortunately, a recumbent bike is an excellent machine for performing high-intensity interval workouts.

 

Designing A Weight Loss Workout On The Recumbent Bike

We know that the most efficient form of cardio for weight loss is high-intensity interval training (H.I.I.T).

We also know that a recumbent bike is a great machine for H.I.I.T workout. But, how do we design a weight loss workout like this?

There are many options, but the idea of interval training is to combine shorter periods of hard effort with periods of lower intensity, easier work.

A very popular and effective method is TABATA training. It is also super simple.

In TABATA training, high-intensity intervals of 20 seconds are followed by 10-second rest intervals. A total of 8 rounds are completed for a 4-minute workout.

TABATA is interval training in its simplest form. However, it is a very intense method and may not suit a beginner.

The beauty of interval training is that can be adjusted to an individual’s current fitness levels. The work to rest ratios can be manipulated very easily.

A recommended workout, to begin with, would be to rest for twice as long as the work interval.

An example would look like this:

  • 20s high-intensity sprint.
  • 40s low-intensity, slow pedalling.
  • 20s high -intensity sprint.
  • 40s low-intensity, slow pedalling.

That pattern can then be completed for the desired number of rounds. Starting with 5-8 rounds is a good amount.

As fitness increases, more rounds can be added or the low-intensity phases can be shortened.

 

Recumbent Bikes And Weight Loss: Final Thoughts

So, are recumbent exercise bikes good for weight loss?

They certainly are. The recumbent bike can be just as good as any other piece of cardio equipment available.

Schwinn 270

Recumbent cycles may even be a much better choice than some machines if we take into account their lower impact nature.

Being easier on the joints is a huge advantage. Longevity and physical health are key if weight loss is to be sustained.

It is important, however, that the right exercise protocol is put in place for maximum weight loss.

The most efficient protocol is certainly going to be some form of high-intensity interval training.

To really make the most of a recumbent bike’s calorie burning abilities, intersperse short bursts of intense, pulse-racing exercise with lower-intensity recovery periods.

Pair H.I.I.T. on a recumbent bicycle with a calorie controlled diet and weight loss is inevitable.

Sources:

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15133932
[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3924611/
[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8883001

Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike Review

Coming from one of the most renowned bike brands, you would expect the Schwinn 270 to be top of the line.

And it is. Once you step on this bike and start pedaling, you’ll notice the quality instantly.

Do you want a wide range of magnetic resistance options? It has 25! Do you want preset workout programs? It has 29 different options!

The Schwinn 270 recumbent exercise bike has all that and more.

Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike Review

 

Schwinn 270 Review

Pros

  • Easy to assemble
  • Multiple workout programs
  • Multi-user setting
  • Quiet
  • Sleep mode
  • USB port for charging and data exchange
  • Good customer service

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Heavy and bulky
  • No user manual

 

Features

25 Magnetic Resistance Levels

Most recumbent bikes have less than 10 tension levels. The Schwinn 270 has almost thrice that number!

Some may argue that 25 levels of magnetic resistance is too much and perhaps unnecessary. But personally, I like that it can cover a wide range of intensity preferences, especially since I share the bike with several other users.

There are also 10 keys for quick resistance control so changing from a laidback to a more intense workout is very simple.

 

Data Management And Display

schwinn 270 displayTo complement the numerous programs and multi-user setting, the console of the Schwinn 270 allows you to efficiently monitor your performance in relation to your fitness goals.

You get the visual representation of your workout accomplishments through the DualTrack twin LCD windows. They can display up to 13 different types of information.

You can export data through the USB port and use the Schwinn Connect to evaluate your progress.

 

Multiple Programs and User Settings

Besides the wide range of resistance levels, the Schwinn 270 also has a vast selection of preset programs.

There are 12 profile programs to simulate rides, mountains and challenges, 9 heart rate control programs, 4 custom user defined programs, 2 fitness tests, 1 recovery test and 1 quick start program for manual adjustments. It pretty much covers all possible settings!

Other users can also manage their workouts using these program options because the Schwinn 270 can save up to 4 user settings.

 

Heart Rate Monitoring

The handle bars have sensors that monitor your heart rate.

If you prefer to ride hands-free, the Schwinn 270 gives you the option to use a telemetry heart rate monitor. However, you need to buy it separately.

 

Others

  • The bike automatically goes into sleep mode after 5 minutes of inactivity. However, it is recommended to unplug the bike when not in use.
  • Although the Schwinn 270 does not specify its height restrictions, it can still adapt to different users through its aluminum slider rail system.
  • There is a large container for a water bottle or other personal items.
  • It has acoustic speakers that emit a good quality sound.
  • It has a fan for added comfort, although even the third and highest speed feels very light.

 

Design And Specifications

The Schwinn 270 is a bit bulky with assembled dimensions of 64 x 27.7 x 49.9 inches (L x W x H).

Given its size, it is also quite heavy. Despite having transport wheels, moving this 86.6-pound bike can be difficult.

On the other hand, this volume gives the bike a very stable footing. Users of up to 300 lbs. need not worry about security while riding the Schwinn 270.

 

F.A.Q.

Is it easy to assemble?

Yes. Do not expect a user manual but information is available on the internet.

 

Does it fold? Is it easy to move?

No. It attempts to be easily movable with the transport wheels but it is still very heavy.

 

Is it quiet?

Yes. You can enjoy watching TV or listening to music without being bothered by annoying sounds.

 

Does the flywheel run smoothly?

Yes. There is a consistently smooth flywheel motion. You can feel changes in resistance only when you adjust it.

 

Is the seat adjustable?

Yes, but only in terms of distance from the pedals. There is no vertical seat adjustment.

 

Other Options

If a more affordable recumbent bike interests you, consider buying the Exerpeutic 900XL.

However, the slash in price naturally corresponds to less features. It does not have preset programs, that many resistance levels, telemetry pulse monitoring, or a USB port.

Nevertheless, it is still a stable bike that can give you a satisfying workout. For other options, read this post reviewing the best recumbent exercise bikes.

 

Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike: Conclusion

The Schwinn 270 can very well be a true partner in anyone’s fitness journey.

Apart from being sturdy and reliable, it also has advantageous features such as a wide range of programs, magnetic resistance levels, data management and goal tracking capabilities.

It makes workouts even more convenient with acoustic chamber speakers and a 3-speed fan. The Schwinn 270 is undeniably one of the best recumbent exercise bikes on the market today.

exerpeutic-400-xl-recumbent-exercise-bike

Exerpeutic 400XL Recumbent Bike Review (Now Called 300SR)

exerpeutic 400 xl recumbent bike reviewIn most cases, the saying “you get what you pay for” is true. But on other occasions, you get everything you expected, and then some.

The Exerpeutic 400 XL is a stable recumbent bike that allows you to have a quiet and smooth, but challenging and effective workout. You can play around with your workout and change things up with its 8-level magnetic tension and height adjustment feature.

You can also track your performance indicators like distance, calories burned, time, speed, and pulse and view them on a large LCD screen.

While it lacks the advanced features found in more pricey bikes, it is definitely capable of helping you meet your fitness objectives.

 

Exerpeutic 400XL Review

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Easy to assemble
  • Easy to get on and off
  • Foldable
  • Compact
  • Sturdy
  • Quiet
  • Has heart rate monitor

Cons

  • Thin seat padding
  • Difficult seat adjustment

 

Features

Semi-Recumbent Design

Recumbent bikes are designed in such a way that the seat is almost at the same level as the pedals.

While the seat of the Exerpeutic 400XL is slightly elevated, it has a nicely placed backrest and your position is still more natural and relaxed than in an upright bike. This semi-recumbent design also lets you get on and off the bike more easily.

 

8 Level Magnetic Tension Control

There are times when I am all pumped-up for a vigorous workout but most of the time I would rather have a long but steady training session.

exerpeutic 400xl magnetic tension controlThe Exerpeutic 400 XL can perfectly adapt to those preferences. It is very easy to select from the 8 levels of tension control. You just turn the knob to the right for a more difficult workout.

Furthermore, it uses magnetic resistance which is preferred by many because it allows the flywheel to run smoother. I also love that is nearly silent, allowing me to watch TV, read a book or play music in the background. Don’t we all love it when we don’t notice time going by while working out?

 

Hand Pulse Sensors

I have to commend Exerpeutic for including hand pulse sensors in their very affordable recumbent exercise bikes.exerpeutic 400xl hand pulse sensors

The handles of the 400XL help you keep your balance but also monitor your heart rate through the built-in pulse sensors.

 

Others

  • This already compact machine folds and has wheels for easy storage.
  • The seat is generally comfortable. However, it would be better if it had a thicker cushion and could be adjusted easier.
  • Its large pedals with straps help you feel more secure.

 

Design And Specifications

Recumbent bikes may have a larger footprint than upright bikes, but the Exerpeutic 400XL has a compact structure. It measures 33 x 19 x 46 inches (L x W x H) when assembled.

If you wish to move the bike for a change in environment or for storage, you can do it without difficulty because it only weighs 43 lbs. and has transport wheels.

It can adapt to different user heights, from 5’2″ to 6’2″, by having the seat adjusted. However, it would be better if the adjustment could be done more easily. It is also not very flexible because the settings are too far from each other.

Like most recumbent bikes, it can accommodate a maximum user weight of 300 lbs. The Exerpeutic 400XL is also covered by 1-year warranty, which is typical of most bikes in this price range.

 

F.A.Q.

Is it easy to set-up?

Yes. It helps that the nuts and bolts were already screwed into place so you no longer need to identify where each one should go. All the necessary tools are also included when you purchase the bike.

 

400xl folding recumbent exercise bikeIs it a folding exercise bike?

Yes. Moving and storing it is also made easier by the transport wheels.

 

Is it quiet?

This bike operates very silently because the pedaling motion is very smooth and it uses magnetic resistance.

 

What height can it accommodate?

Even though some expensive recumbent bikes don’t have height restrictions, the Exerpeutic 400XL specifies that it can accommodate users between 5’2″ and 6’’2″.

 

Is it sturdy?

Yes. It feels very stable and secure even on maximum resistance.

 

Other Options

It is tough to find a recumbent bike that is equally as good and affordable as the Exerpeutic 400XL. If you are willing to spend more for your recumbent exercise bike, you can consider the Schwinn 270.

You can vary your workout by choosing from its 25 magnetic resistance levels and 29 preset programs. Monitoring your progress is easy with its dual LCD window display. It can also save up to 4 different user settings.

If you would like to explore other options, you can also check out our review of the best recumbent exercise bikes.

 

Exerpeutic 400XL (300SR) Recumbent Exercise Bike: Conclusion

Without a doubt, getting the Exerpeutic 400XL is an affordable, comfortable and efficient way to keep yourself fit.

With its compact design and stable frame, it is an ideal equipment for home exercise. It has all the basic features that a recumbent exercise bike should cover. It even has a pulse monitor that is a pleasant surprise considering its price.

Whether you are starting a regular exercise routine or you want to maintain your active lifestyle without having to go out, the Exerpeutic 400XL is an excellent choice.

best recumbent exercise bike

Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes (Updated March 2020)

best recumbent exercise bikeLet’s admit it. We have all excuses for not exercising.

We are too busy. There are aches and pains that we don’t want to aggravate. We have other forms of activity anyway.

You can’t help wonder: is there a safe, simple and comfortable home exercise that can simulate a legitimate outdoor workout?

What equipment can help us do that?

A recumbent exercise bike might be what you are looking for.

It’s generally safe, easy to use, and effective. With the advent of technology, it is now even more secure and has more practical features.

Aside from the more common upright bikes, recumbent exercise bikes are stationary bikes that help you manage your weight and strengthen your heart and lungs.

Because they are designed to put you in a reclining, more natural position, you do not tire as easily. Furthermore, this position makes the bike very stable and puts less stress on your knees and hips.

Better comfort means longer exercise periods resulting in more calories burned!

In this post, we will list the key factors to consider in choosing a recumbent bike, educate you about the different types and name some of the most renowned brands. Most importantly, we will lead you to the best models available on the market.

Let’s get this ride started!

 

Best Recumbent Exercise Bike: Comparison Table

ImageName# of ProgramsLevels of ResistancePriceRating

Check Price
Exerpeutic 400XLNone8$$10 / 10

Check Price
Schwinn 2702925$$$$9.9 / 10

Check Price
Schwinn 2302220$$$$9.6 / 10

Check Price
Marcy ME 709None8$$9.5 / 10

Check Price
Exerpeutic 900XLNone8$$9.4 / 10

 

Features To Look For

Recumbent exercise bikes may look similar but they surely don’t feel and function equally. We don’t want you to make hasty decisions in choosing the right recumbent bike for you, so we listed down important factors that you should look for before finalizing that purchase.

Consider the following as a checklist to serve as your buying guide.

 

Stability

The primary attribute to look for is stability. Generally, a heavier bike is more stable. Also make sure that your weight is not beyond the bike’s maximum weight capacity.

 

Comfortable Seat

You will spend a considerable amount of time on the bike’s seat so make sure that is it wide and comfortable. It should be positioned in such a way that your legs are almost in line with the pedals. Your knees should bend slightly during the workout to avoid straining your joints.

 

Various Resistance Levels

Exercise bikes have different resistance levels to resemble the feeling of actually riding a bike on the road. Most bikes have fully-adjustable direct-contact and magnetic braking systems while some have a fan that uses air resistance. These resistance types are further explained below. Get to know them to know what suits you best.

 

Pedals

A bike’s pedals should be wide enough and have some sort of strapping to ensure your safety.

 

Built-in Computer

It may be a low-impact workout but you should still keep track of your progress. Look for a bike with a built-in console that measures and displays basic statistics like time, speed, and number of calories burned.

 

Bells and Whistles

While some features are not fundamental, they make your workouts more convenient. A heart rate monitor helps you sustain the fat-burning intensity.

A built-in fan brings additional resistance while making you more comfortable. If your space is limited, there are foldable bikes that have transport wheels for easy storage. Other extras that are good to have are a built-in sound system, a water holder, a magazine stand and a remote control holder.

 

Top Recumbent Bikes

There is no need to be intimidated by the vast number of choices available on the market. We made life easier for you by eliminating the inferior options and limiting your choices down to the best of the best.

Here are the reviews of the best recumbent bikes on the market right now.

 

1. Exerpeutic 400XL (Now Called 300SR)

Exerpeutic 400XLThe Exerpeutic 400XL may be small in size but it is definitely big in features so the fact that it got the top spot in out list isn’t surprising at all.

Whether you like an easy ride or you prefer more tension, its 8-level magnetic tension control system allows you to select the setting that suits your preference.

Another reason why it is well-loved is its smoothness and consistency while pedaling. Combine that with a perfectly-balanced flywheel and what you have is a powerful, yet smooth and quiet ride.

It’s not all about efficiency because the makers of the Exerpeutic 400XL placed a premium on comfort and convenience as well.

It has a large seat cushion and a back rest that will surely fit most user sizes. You can adjust its height between 5’2″ and 6’2″.

Your progress is easy to monitor with its easy-to-read, large window display. Its LCD shows distance, calories burned, time, speed, and pulse.  You can easily make sure that you stay within your fat-burning zone through the hand pulse sensors located on the handle bars. However, the console’s location provides a minor inconvenience because you tend to hit it with your legs as you pedal.

This compact equipment is very easy to assemble. Storage is also a breeze because of its built-in wheels.

If you want a compact, but efficient, and affordable recumbent exercise bike, the Exerpeutic 400XL fits you perfectly.

You can read our full review here.

 

2. Schwinn 270

Schwinn 270If you want a feature-packed bike, the Schwinn 270 will not disappoint you.

It will surely meet your intensity requirement because there is a wide range of magnetic resistance to choose from – 25 to be exact! There are also 10 quick keys that will enable you to shift from easier levels to more difficult ones.

Its console helps you smartly plan and monitor your workout. To maintain the challenge, you can choose from the 29 built-in programs. You can easily track your progress through the Schwinn Connect program and myfitnesspal.com. Don’t worry about importing the data because you can do that through the USB port. Other household members can enjoy the benefits of this wonderful bike because it can store and manage data of up to 4 users.

The handle bars have sensors that measure your heart rate. If you don’t want to keep your hands limited, you can also use a compatible chest strap heart rate monitor. However, you need to buy it separately.

There are also two LCD screens for monitoring up to 13 displays. However, the backlight is a bit too bright and can take some getting used to.

You will love the Schwinn 270 not only for being efficient but also for being comfortable. Although there are no specific height settings, you can still slide the padded seat to adjust its distance from the pedals. The user weight capacity is 300 lbs which is quite high for a bike like this.

Other delightful features include a water bottle holder and a 3-speed fan. You won’t need to get off the bike because you have almost everything that you will need- even entertainment through its acoustic speakers.

It may be a bit bulky and expensive but you can be sure that the Schwinn 270 is very much worth the space and the price.

Learn more in our Schwinn 270 review.

 

3. Schwinn 230

Schwinn 230In terms of features, the Schwinn 230 is not far behind.

There are two levelers that hold up the frame and a thick crossbar that reinforces the bike’s stability.

With its 20-level magnetic resistance coupled with smooth and quiet operation, it can pass as a very capable commercial exercise bike. You can quickly adjust the resistance using the 10 quick keys. Depending on your fitness objectives, there are also 29 programs to choose from.

It has a dual LCD window system that displays up to 13 different statistics. There are the commonly-seen information like time, distance, pulse, speed, and calories and the more complicated factors such as heart rate zone indicator, % complete indicator, intensity meter and goal achievement. It’s as if a personal trainer keeps track of your performance!

You can share the Schwinn 230 with your spouse, your daughter, or your best friend because it can save up to 2 user settings. After all, working out with a fitness partner is more fun and effective. You can import your data through the USB port and use relevant programs like SchwinnConnect and myfitnesspal.com.

Its seat has a slider rail system that uses a lever for easy adjustment. Its comfortable back seat has lumbar support for comfort. To counter boredom and make your workout even more cozy, it has acoustic speakers and a 3-speed fan.

It may be quite costly but you will definitely not be shortchanged if you get the Schwinn 230. With all its features, you will run out of reasons to skip your workout!

We have a longer review of the Schwinn 230 here if you’re interested.

 

4. Marcy ME 709

Marcy ME-709If your primary interest is an affordable recumbent bike that is nothing fancy but does its job well, consider buying the Marcy ME 709.

You can start lightly and when you are all warmed up, you can accelerate to more difficult tension levels. There are 8 levels of magnetic resistance that you can adjust by tightening the knobs. You will also be pleased with how quietly it works regardless of the tension setting.

Monitoring your progress is very simple. A console with an LCD screen tracks and shows speed, distance, time, and calories burned. Sure, you can get more from expensive recumbent bikes. But sometimes you need nothing more than the essentials, right?

It may be a compact bike but you can rely on its stability. Its durable, powder-coated steel frame is strong enough to support a maximum user weight of 300 lbs. There are no height restrictions and you can adjust the padded seat’s distance from the pedals to comfortably fit different user heights.

Overall, the Marcy ME 709 is a reliable recumbent bike.

 

5. Exerpeutic 900XL

Exerpeutic 900XLCompleting our top 5 list of recumbent exercise bikes is the Exerpeutic 900XL. It is another basic but efficient bike that is also reasonably priced.

Assembly is pretty simple. All the parts are labeled properly and the instructions are easy to understand.

Its simple Step Thru frame design allows you to easily get in and out of the bike. With its leg stabilizers and large strapped pedals, you’re sure to get a safe workout every single time. It also has a large, comfortable seat that is adjustable to fit different user heights.

On top of these convenient features, it also offers a challenging workout. You can customize the bike’s resistance with its 8-level magnetic tension control. Whether you are feeling pumped up or you just want a steady ride, the bike is ready to meet your needs.

You can track relevant performance statistics such as distance, calories burned, time, speed and view them through the large LCD display. It also has hand pulse sensors so you can make sure that you stay within your intended heart rate zone.

If you are looking for an affordable option that functions exactly as intended, the Exerpeutic 900XL will not disappoint you.

Read our full-length Exerpeutic 900XL review for more.

 

Honorable Mentions

There is quite a number of good recumbent bikes and it would be unfair to end this list with just 5 of them. And so, we are also recognizing two other remarkable recumbents. 🙂

 

1. Marcy NS-716R

Marcy NS-716RLike its predecessor, the Marcy NE 709, the NS-716R is perfect for limited spaces and budgets.

Setting it up is quick because of its uncomplicated design. It can easily fit in a spare corner in your home as it’s very compact, and you can get an effective and low-impact workout anytime you want. If you have to, you can also move it around with very little effort because of its transport wheels.

The frame was designed in such a way that anyone can easily get on and off the bike. This is perfect for those who are not-so-agile or for people who are recovering from injuries. The seat is also adjustable, making it comfortable for different heights.

The Marcy NS-716R uses magnetic resistance to give you a challenging workout. There is a knob that you turn to the right for increased resistance and to the left for a more relaxed ride.

A computer screen gives you feedback on your progress. It monitors speed, distance, time, and calories burned.

Despite its affordability, the Marcy NS-716R does not disregard convenient features. It has foam-covered handles that are easy to grip and a cup holder to help you remain hydrated while working out.

Overall, the Marcy NS-716R provides good value for money.

 

2. Exerpeutic 1000

Exerpeutic 1000The other half of the honorable mention duo is the Exerpeutic 1000.

Setting up the bike is easy, and getting started on your workout is as effortless. The frame’s design allows you to just step on the bike and get on the comfortable seat without any difficulty.

Compared to the other Exerpeutic models, it has a wider seat that is adjustable to fit users between 5’3″ and 6’3″ in height. A minor inconvenience, however, is the three-knob adjustment located underneath the seat.

Whether you want a steady ride or rigorous exercise, its range of magnetic resistance levels will adapt to your preferred difficulty. Its handles double as pulse sensors so you can ensure that you stay within your desired heart rate zone.

You can check how hard you have been working out by viewing the large number display on the LCD. It indicates distance, calories burned, time, speed, scan and heart rate.

Meeting basic requirements and even exceeding certain expectations, the Exerpeutic 1000 is definitely a wise choice.

 

Types Of Recumbent Exercise Bikes

As you pedal an exercise bike, a flywheel provides a level of resistance that enables you to have an effective cardiovascular exercise.

Recumbent bikes can be classified based on the type of resistance they use.

 

Magnetic Resistance

Magnetic resistance is most commonly used these days. A series of magnets surround the flywheel and you control it manually or through a computer console. It is the easiest to use and the most reliable type of resistance. In addition, it is also quiet and smooth to use.

 

Friction Resistance

Friction resistance uses a fabric belt or felt pad against the flywheel. It requires manual adjustment and regular maintenance of the belt to ensure smooth operation. This type of resistance can also be noisy. Because of these setbacks, there has been a decrease in the popularity of bikes using friction resistance.

 

Electro-Magnetic Resistance

Lastly, high-quality, commercial-grade bikes use electro-magnetic resistance. This powerful type of magnetic resistance uses electrical current controlled by a programmable console to provide advanced resistance for hard training.

You may have your personal preference but due to their ease of use, smooth and quiet operation, and overall reliability, we highly recommend bikes that use magnetic resistance.

 

Top Recumbent Bike Brands

Our search for the best recumbent exercise bike revealed that among the many brands available on the market right now, three names stand out from the competition.

In your search for fitness machines, make Schwinn, Exerpeutic and Marcy your priority brands.

 

Schwinn

If there is one brand that is considered the authority in bicycles, it has to be Schwinn.

Since 1895, it has been perfecting the machine to address specific comfort and fitness needs. It has also ventured into creating other brilliant fitness and recreation equipment including treadmills and ellipticals.schwinn-logo

Schwinn bikes may be pricey, but you cannot argue that their excellent quality and meticulously crafted features are worth every penny. They have a wide range of magnetic resistance levels for different intensity requirements. There are quite a number of preset workout programs and their multi-functional console tracks performance statistics. A USB-charging port enables easy exchange of data for connecting to fitness applications. Lastly, acoustic speakers and fans help make your workout more enjoyable.

There is no doubt that you will not go wrong with a recumbent bike from Schwinn.

 

Exerpeutic

Exerpeutic is under the umbrella of Paradigm Health and Fitness brands, the same family where the famous Ironman Fitness belongs. It manufactures machines that feature the latest technology trends in fitness while keeping exerpeutic-logothem reasonably-priced.

Exerpeutic is a preferred name for home-use exercise equipment such as treadmills, ellipticals, upright bikes, training cycles and recumbent bikes.

Their bikes are easy to assemble and they typically have smooth and consistent pedaling motion, hand pulse sensors and specific height adjustment ranges.

If affordability and reliability are your standards, go for Exerpeutic machines.

 

Marcy

A passionate bodybuilder by the name of Walter Marcyan had a vision of building strength and fitness equipment not only for gyms but also for every household. Today, Marcy is known for coming up with innovative products to marcy-logohelp you meet your fitness objectives.

Marcy recumbent bikes are well-known for being compact and affordable. They also commonly have preset magnetic resistance tension levels and weighted, counterbalanced pedals for a stimulating yet safe workout.

If you are in need of good quality recumbent bikes, weight benches, exercise cycles, elliptical cross trainers, or free weights and dumbbells, Marcy is a name that you can trust.

 

Buying A Recumbent Bike: Other Things To Consider

Are you torn between an upright and a recumbent bike? Let us go over this comparison to help you make up your mind.

While both types give similar results in helping you lose weight, recumbent bikes allows you to workout with much more comfort. It is easier on the lower back and gentler on the joints because of the bucket seat with a comfortable backrest. The low center of gravity is safer as it protects your knees and ankles from injury-causing impact.

The upright bike gets the upper hand in terms of price and size. Because it is smaller and requires less materials, it is understandably more affordable.

In terms of the muscles worked, both exercise the glutes, hamstrings, quads, hip flexors and calves. The upright bike helps strengthen the abdomen, back, shoulders and arms while the recumbent gives a better workout for the glutes and hamstrings.

Whether upright or recumbent, the more important choice to make is to have the motivation and consistency to get on that bike to achieve your fitness goals.

 

Best Recumbent Bikes: Conclusion

Keeping an active lifestyle is not exactly easy. We usually don’t have the time or the motivation to do so.

A recumbent exercise bike makes an active and healthy lifestyle within easier reach. It enables you to get low-impact cardiovascular exercise minus the strain and discomfort. With customizable tension levels, progress monitoring systems, solid frames and adjustable seats, what will make you say no to a quiet and smooth workout that you can do even while watching television or reading a book?

Schwinn, Exerpeutic and Marcy are dependable brands of recumbent bikes. Whether affordable or expensive, basic or sophisticated, you will surely find your match.

If you are ready to go for it, get the Exerpeutic 400 XL and ride your way to fitness!

Schwinn 230

Schwinn 230 Recumbent Bike Review

If you take working out seriously, you will love the Schwinn 230.

Its 20 levels of magnetic resistance and 22 programs are sure to give you a challenging workout every single time. You can effortlessly monitor and analyze your performance because of its compatibility with multiple fitness applications.

Best of all, it is a sturdy and comfortable bike that I’m sure you’ll love.

Schwinn 230 recumbent exercise bike review

 

Schwinn 230 Review

Pros

  • Easy to assemble
  • Multiple workout programs
  • Multi-user setting
  • Lumbar support
  • Quiet
  • Stable and sturdy
  • USB port for charging and data exchange

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Bulky
  • Slightly uncomfortable seat

 

Features

Stable Frame

Spend just a few minutes on the Schwinn 230 and you will notice that it is a solid and stable recumbent bike.

The components are made of high-quality materials that are securely put together.

The center frame is supported by two levelers, and a thick crossbar tubing connecting the seat to the rear leveler provides added stability.

 

20 Magnetic Resistance Levels

One major advantage of Schwinn bikes is their extent of tension level options.

Most recumbent bikes have less than 10 resistance levels. This could be insufficient, especially for those who have been riding actively outdoors where there are many different road conditions.

The Schwinn 230 has 20 levels of smooth magnetic tension that can adapt to your desired difficulty level.

 

schwinn 230 consoleMultiple Programs And Dual User Settings

If you yearn for a challenge, that is exactly what you will get with this bike.

The Schwinn 230 has 22 programs to choose from, ranging from heart rate control, fitness tests and custom user defined, to name a few. Whether you want to push yourself really hard or simply want to test your fitness level, there is a setting that will give you exactly what you want.

The settings and workout statistics of up to 2 users are saved on the console. When you restart your workout, you just pick up from where you left off without having to input anything all over again.

 

Data Management And Display

You can easily track your performance with the DualTrack two LCD window system that is capable of displaying up to 13 different feedbacks.

It does not end with just viewing the numbers. You can import the data through the USB port and upload the information to SchwinnConnect and/or myfitnesspal.com, With these useful tools, you can analyze and plan your workouts for maximum results.

 

Othersschwinn 230 seat and back rest

  • The bike’s structure allows your legs to pedal comfortably.
  • The seat is a bit hard. On the other hand, I like that there is lumbar support for more comfort.
  • You can adjust the seat according to your height using the lever on the left of the seat.
  • The sensors in the handle bars enable you to monitor your heart rate.
  • It has acoustic chamber speakers and a 3-speed fan to make your workout more enjoyable.

 

Design And Specifications

The Schwinn 230 is a bulky recumbent bike, measuring 64 x 27.7 x 49.9 inches (L x W x H).

It does take up quite a big amount of space, but I don’t mind because it makes the bike stable and secure. I can pedal as fast and as hard as I want to without worrying that the bike may tip over.

Furthermore, this stable bike has a maximum user capacity of 300 lbs.

Well-built as it is, the Schwinn 230 provides a generous warranty: 10 years for the frame, 2 years for mechanical, 1 year for electrical, and 90 days for labor.

 

F.A.Q.

Is it easy to assemble?

Yes. There is very little assembly required because the base of the bike comes pre-assembled. It also comes with clear instructions and all the necessary tools.

 

Is it quiet?

Yes. You can watch TV with normal volume.

 

What is the user weight capacity?

It can accommodate a maximum user weight of 300 lbs.

 

What is the height restriction?

There is no specific height restriction. However, the slider seat rail system allows you to adjust the distance between the seat and the pedals.

 

How is the Schwinn 230 different from the Schwinn 270?

Although they are similar in many ways, there is also quite a number of differences between the Schwinn 230 and the Schwinn 270.

The Schwinn 230 has 29 programs while the Schwinn 270 only has 22.

The Schwinn 230 also has 2 more user settings than the Schwinn 270.

In terms of magnetic tension levels, the Schwinn 230 has 20 while the Schwinn 270 has 25.

The Schwinn 230 has a plastic molded seat and standard size pedals. On the other hand, the Schwinn 270 has a padded seat and oversized pedals.

Both models have hand pulse sensors but the Schwinn 270 also has a telemetry heart monitoring capability.

Both are stable recumbent bikes, but the Schwinn 230 has an oversized crossbar tubing that reinforces stability.

Lastly, the Schwinn 270 has a sleep mode feature. it automatically shuts off after 5 minutes of inactivity. Learn more about the 270 in our review.

 

Other Options

With its valuable features, the Schwinn 230 is easily one of the best recumbent exercise bikes today. If you want another efficient recumbent bike that does not cost as much, consider the Exerpeutic 400XL.

It may not have sophisticated features but it has the fundamentals like magnetic tension control, seat adjustment, performance tracking and display, and a stable frame with Step Thru design.

Both bikes are listed in our top 5 review, which also has 3 other great options.

 

Schwinn 230 Recumbent Bike: Conclusion

If you won’t settle for the basics and are willing to spend a little more for your recumbent bike, the Schwinn 230 is perfect for you.

While stable and comfortable, it certainly does not lack features that will keep you challenged, the top ones being its wide range of tension control and numerous preset programs.

Overall, the Schwinn 230 is a highly-recommended recumbent exercise bike.