They give your legs a fantastic workout and condition your cardiovascular fitness too. They are great if you already enjoy cycling but live in a very built up area and want to avoid the traffic.
Your stamina improves tremendously and using an exercise bike allows you to build up stamina safely because, unlike with running for example, there is no impact. By doing only two sessions a week and increasing the length of session and resistance per session, you will start to notice the difference after the first week and you will be able to run or walk longer distances too.
If you want to train for an event there are many settings on exercise bikes to help you. They can simulate a race with different resistances to help you build up your distance and speed over time. You can program you own course or use the default on the bike.
All exercise bikes will increase your fitness levels, however there are a myriad of features to make it more exciting and here are few to get you thinking.
Types of Exercise Bikes
The two main types are upright and recumbent.
Upright bikes are the most common and you ride it just like a normal bike in the same upright position. Your legs are in front a little and you are leaning forward to hold the handlebars.
Recumbent bikes mean you are leaning back onto a padded backrest. Many feel this position is far more comfortable if you are riding for a long time. This bike also comes recommended if you are recovering from back or knee injuries.
Some features to look for include magnetic resistance pedaling motion. This uses magnets to add resistance when you pedal. It will feel like you are dragging something along behind you, giving a more challenging workout. Make sure you get a bike that allows you to combine the levels of resistance and create your own programs.
Exercise Bike Accessories
A heart rate monitor is essential to get a measurement of how hard your heart is working. The bike detects your pulse usually through special sensitive pads on the handlebars. The most effective exercising heart rate for most of us is roughly 70 to 80% of your maximum.
A good digital display is essential to inform you of your distance traveled, your speed and time. Look for controls near the display area which let you change the program or make a new one.