What Is The Best Exercise Bike Under 200?

Choosing between the many indoor, stationary bike options out there can be difficult, especially when you’re on a budget. With certain kinds of bikes – like spin bikes – in style right now, it can be tempting to choose one that’s in vogue, but it’s also worth considering other options – like recumbent bikes – that are low-impact and easy to use for beginnings.

Source: flickr.com

That said, we wanted to break down our favorite options for each of the main kinds of indoor, stationary bikes so you can have your pick between them, all at your budget.

The Best Exercise Bikes Under $200

Many people believe that in order to have one of the best exercise bikes out there, you need to invest hundreds of dollars, but that’s simply not true. We’ve rounded up a few of the best exercise bikes under $200 so you can see that you can have your pick of top-notch indoor bikes without spending a fortune.

Recumbent: Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike: ME-709

For a no-frills, get-the-job-done, affordable recumbent-style bike, this should be your go-to. It’s more stable than some folding options out there and is durable enough for repeated use.

This bike relies on magnetic power for resistance and comes with several well-padded handles for you to adapt the bike to however you’re most comfortable riding it.

Source: flickr.com

Upright: Marcy Upright Exercise Bike With Resistance ME-708

When it comes to affordable, best exercise bikes, the Marcy brand takes the cake. Returning with an upright version of the previous bike, you can’t go wrong with this economic choice.

Very similar to the recumbent-version, this bike has everything you need to get started in the world of upright indoor stationary biking.

Spin: Indoor Exercise Spinning Cycling Bike Stationary

Although many people prefer to use spin bikes in a spin class, when that’s just not an option – or if you prefer solo exercise – then this affordable spin bike may be the right choice for your needs.

It’s one of the best exercise bikes out there at this price point and even comes with a monitor, which isn’t typical of spin bikes, so you can keep track of your heart rate.

2-in-1: Upright And Recumbent Foldable Stationary Bike

We love this option because with this foldable stationary bike, you can extend it into a recumbent-style bike for the lowest impact indoor ride. If that’s not for you today, you can bring the seat and the handles closer together and raise them, in order to get a harder ride.

The flexibility to switch between the two styles is helpful for those who might be new to biking indoors and want to get a feel for which may be a better choice or veterans of indoor cycling that love both styles.

Not only that, but the foldable design means that this bike takes up less room in your house, making for easy storage and its overall minimal designs means it is relatively light. This is a great option if you’re limited on space.

Source: flickr.com

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Are recumbent bikes a good workout?

Although using recumbent bikes burns fewer calories than other styles of indoor bikes and also engages fewer muscles than certain kinds of indoor bikes, like spin bikes, they are extremely low impact on the body. They can make for an excellent workout for people who have suffered from injuries or chronic conditions that can make certain kinds of exercise difficult.

In short, a recumbent bike is a great alternative for people looking for a workout that is gentle on the body that will still help to burn calories and strengthen the engaged muscles.

Are exercise bikes good for knees?

In general, most stationary bikes are good for knees because they are relatively low impact on your knees. The best kind for knees are recumbent bikes because of the low, relaxed position, but any kind of biking is better on the knees than running, either outside or on a treadmill, for example. 

Source: flickr.com

Is buying an exercise bike worth it?

Whether or not indoor stationary bikes are worth it is largely dependent on the individual and their ability or desire to engage in outdoor exercise activities or group activities.

If for some reason, you’re limited in your ability to make it to the gym or hop outside for a bike ride, maybe because of time or weather constraints, among other possibilities, then an exercise bike can be worth it.

Additionally, if you primarily use this kind of equipment at the gym in your normal routine and little other equipment, then you may be able to save money in the long term by opting to purchase an exercise bike for home use and ditching the gym membership.

That said, some stationary bikes can have a large up-front cost, so they may not be for everyone. Some are also heavy and hard to move, so someone who may need to change residences in the future might not want to have one at home.

Source: flickr.com

What is the difference between a spin bike and an exercise bike?

The primary difference between the two lies in how you use each one and the weight of the flywheel (which is the mechanism that provides the resistance when you pedal).

In terms of the seated position, a spin bike has a higher seat in comparison to the handlebars, much like a road bike that many cyclists use. Spin bike riders will then use the bike in a hunched position which engages more muscles than the relaxed positioning of an exercise bike.

Source: aviano.af.mil

The fly wheel on a spin bike is also heavier than the resistance mechanism of a typical indoor bike, meaning that spin bike riders will use more energy with each rotation, thus causing higher energy (in the form of calories) burned.

Other differences lie in the features – spin bikes do not typically have a console, while many exercise bikes do – as well as in the option to “stand” on the spin bike as another way to increase the work out, which is something that you cannot do with most stationary bikes.

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