Exercise Bikes
for Home Gym Cardio

Exercise bikes are different breeds than street or mountain bicycles, or recumbents. The terms can be a little confusing. But what I am talking about are stationary upright bikes used for exercise to increase general fitness, training for cycle events, or for physical rehabilitation.

One of their major assets is that they are low-impact (on your joints), while at the same time providing excellent cardiovascular exercise. You can pedal at a long-slow-distance pace or go for high intensity intervals. And they take up less space than a treadmill, which can be an important factor in a home gym.

Most of the bikes are designed with a mechanism for applying resistance to the pedals, which naturally increases the intensity of the exercise. Resistance devices include magnets, fans, and friction mechanisms. Some models even allow you to pedal backwards, working the antagonist muscles.

Many stationary machines have heart rate monitors you access simply by holding a spot on the handlebars. Many also have programmable exercise formats, such as hill climbing, intervals, endurance rides, and random speeds.

It’s possible to adapt an ordinary bicycle for stationary exercise by placing it on bicycle rollers. Racing cyclists often use this method to warm up before a competition, or to train on their own machines indoors. However, a stationary upright bike designed for general fitness and home gyms probably is a better option for most of us.

As with most exercise equipment, I recommend trying out different models before buying. If that is not practical, be sure you understand the company’s return policy, in case after using it you find the equipment is not what you wanted.

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