best exercise bikes for seniors

The 10 Best Exercise Bikes for Seniors of 2020

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As we age, it becomes more critical for us to find a way we can exercise without leaving the house. In this article, I've compiled a list of what I feel are the best exercise bikes for seniors currently available.  

As we already know, exercise comes with multiple benefits for your cardiovascular health. Even if you’ve never really worked out regularly, as soon as you start, you will notice mental and physical improvements.  

Working out on an exercise bike would help you get your heart rate up while providing one of the safest exercises indoors that seniors can do. Here are some of the best recumbent bikes for seniors:

Top Exercise Bikes for Seniors

Best Recumbent Exercise Bike with Resistance ME-709

Best Recumbent Exercise Bike with Resistance ME-709

With heavy-duty construction and step-through design, this bike is easy to use. Equipped with eight levels of resistance, the tension control adjusts the intensity level from light to heavy use.


The LCD display has an odometer feature that is easy to read with a large numerical display, revealing speed, time, distance, and calories. The saddle is ample and comfortable, designed for maximum support.  


Foam covered handles provide comfort for the hands, while the handlebars support the back and arms while exercising. The pedals are weighted and counterbalanced to support the feet and to deliver maximum control with adjustable foot straps. As a seniors best exercise bike, this model is highly recommended.

PROS

  • Relatively Affordable
  • Stable Solid Construction
  • Easy to move
  • Quiet and Smooth

CONS

  • Some have had issues with assembly
  • Challenges with the tabbed washer on the balanced flywheel
  • Computer Wires can be tricky to install

Schwinn A20 Recumbent Bike

Schwinn A20 Recumbent Bike

The Schwinn A20 was created to offer high quality cardio exercise at an affordable price. With a unique console design and easy-to-use features, this model delivers a challenging body workout you can enjoy in the comfort of your home. The fully-loaded console tracks essential details such as time, RPM, distance, calories, and a heart rate monitor.


With over eight different resistance levels, you'll be able to get the challenge you need to continue improving every day. There are heart rate monitors built into the ergonomic handles, so you can keep track of your status while you hold the handgrips. Also included are padded and contoured seats for a comfortable ride.  


This best recumbent exercise bike for seniors is recommended because it’s low impact! It’s also relatively simple to assemble and sturdy.

PROS

  • Smooth riding on every resistance level
  • Low impact on knees and joints
  • Easy Assembly
  • Many different exercise programs to choose from

CONS

  • Profiles for only two users
  • Some complained about the hard plastic back seat

Sunny Health & Fitness Comfort XL Ultra Cushioned Seat Folding Exercise Bike

Sunny Health and Fitness Comfort XL Ultra Cushioned Seat Folding Exercise Bike

This extra-large recumbent bike has been built to accommodate users of all fitness levels with customizable features. You can move the adjustable seat up or down or modify the position of the handles. And with ten different levels of adjustable magnetic resistance, you can get a challenging workout. 


You can exercise comfortably on one of these upright bikes with a fully padded seat with the backrest while keeping hydrated with the convenient water bottle holder.


This model has a smooth 3lb flywheel drive mechanism with a belt drive for stability. Also included is a performance monitor so you can keep an eye on important details, such as calories, time, speed, distance. You can also check your pulse rate with your hands on the padded handles. The tablet holder can support your mobile device, providing options for entertainment while exercising.  


As an example of bikes that converts from upright bikes to recumbents, this model is ideal for seniors looking to do upright exercise to strengthen their legs after surgery.

PROS

  • Effortless assembly
  • Very quiet during use
  • Has a tiny footprint and doesn't take up much space
  • Surprisingly sturdy for the price point

CONS

  • Not ideal for people taller than 5’11”
  • Some have complained about the quality of the monitor

EXERPEUTIC 900XL 300 lbs. Weight Capacity Recumbent Exercise Bike

EXERPEUTIC 900XL

With eight levels of magnetic tension, the Exerpeutic 900XL is a recumbent bike offering a challenging cardiovascular body workout. Capable of supporting a weight capacity up to 300 pounds, it has a wider seat than most models for extra comfort. The ‘Step Thru’ design makes mounting the machine for use very easy.


It does come with an LCD Monitor displaying information such as time, speed, calories, and distance. And if you use the hand pulse sensors, you can be certain that you always stay within your Target Heart Rate Zone. With a precision-balanced flywheel and V-belt drive, smooth, quiet operation is assured. You can more easily move this machine from one room to another with the built-in transportation wheels at the base. 


This recumbent bike is a recommended exercise bike for seniors because of the ease of use, the low back support, and the comfortable seat.

PROS

  • Easy to assemble
  • Very quiet with easily adjustable tension settings
  • Simple Display for the basics

CONS

  • The display can be difficult to read if not observed in a well-lit room
  • Some have had difficulty adjusting the seat

Marcy Magnetic Recumbent Bike

Marcy Magnetic Recumbent Bike

The Marcy Magnetic Recumbent Bike offers comfort for all users. With a seat that adjusts to various leg-lengths and a step-through frame, you can get your cardio as soon as possible. To change your workout level, all you have to do is modify the preset tension-adjustment knob.


The included LCD monitor tracks details such as calories, speed, distance, time, and more. Eight different magnetic resistance levels are suitable if you’re a beginner or a more advanced fitness enthusiast. This recumbent bike is recommended to seniors because it’s low impact. The ergonomically-designed seat supports your lower total body, while the magnetic resistance wheel puts less stress on your knees and ankles.

PROS

  • It's an excellent bike for beginners
  • Relatively simple to assemble
  • Great deal for the price

CONS

  • Resistance system doesn’t go very high and might be unsatisfactory to some users

MaxKare Recumbent Exercise Bike Indoor Cycling Stationary Bike

MaxKare Recumbent Exercise Bike

This MaxKare Recumbent Bike comes with eight levels of customizable magnetic resistance with whisper-quiet operation. It comes with an ergonomically designed seat and back cushions padded with a sponge to make your workouts exceptionally comfortable.  


The steel frame is just a little bigger than most models in its category, with a user weight capacity of 220 pounds. Other notable features include a tablet holder for your electronics and a seat adjustment lever. The LCD monitor can track and display details such as your distance, speed, time, and calories burned.


Using the pulse monitor grips, you can also track your heart rate monitor. The reason this bike is recommended for seniors is that as a recumbent, it has advantages you can make use of during physical therapy.

PROS

  • Not very difficult to assemble, though it takes time
  • It’s a very sturdy piece of equipment
  • Has a very comfortable seat

CONS

  • Provides basic resistance, not meant for more complex exercise regimens

Exerpeutic GOLD 975XBT Bluetooth Smart Technology Recumbent Exercise Bike

Exerpeutic GOLD 975XBT

The Exerpeutic Gold is a much more advanced model of recumbent exercise bike than some of the other products on this list. As an example of the best recumbent exercise bikes, it offers Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to track your workout data with the free MyFitQuest App on iOS


Included in the Backlit LCD computer is 21 workout programs with three computer goal workout settings: calories, distance, and time.


You can quickly and easily make adjustments to the seat with the chrome slide rail. The large seat and backrest are suitable for users of all sizes. Also included are large pedals with safety straps prevent slippage during lower body exercise. The Smooth Torque Cranking System provides a smooth and consistent pedaling motion.


There are also transportation wheels at the base of this bike, so you can quickly move it from one room to another. Like other recumbent bikes in this list, this model is recommended for seniors because of its low impact design. 

PROS

  • Sturdy and quiet operation
  • Effective tension provides a challenge

CONS

  • Compatibly App doesn’t work with Android, only iOS
  • Footprint might be a little larger than other items in its category

ANCHEER Indoor Cycling Bike

ANCHEER Indoor Cycling Bike

This bike isn't a recumbent, but a stationary indoor exercise bike. Coming with a 48-pound flywheel and a smooth belt-drive system, this bike provides a challenging workout. The included LCD screen displays items such as speed, time, calories burned, and pulse.  


There's a bracket to hold your phone or device while exercising. There are also transport wheels located at the base for natural movement.

In some cases, the floor where you set up your exercise bike might be uneven. The Ancheer Indoor Cycling bike helps you take care of this with floor levelers. The cushioned seat is made from ergonomically designed, high-density sponges.


Lastly, this bike has been topped-off with car-grade paint, making it less susceptible to rust. This bike comes recommended for seniors because of its smoothness and relatively simple assembly.  

Body Champ BRB852 Magnetic Recumbent Exercise Bike

Body Champ BRB852

The find the optimum exercise position and form, and the solid steel frame is adjustable. You can use one of the two sets of handlebars to change the way you engage your upper body in the exercise. One of the things that makes this bike different than other recumbent models is that the sensors are located in the rear, in the wrap-around handlebars. You can use these to monitor heart rate changes to make sure you're making progress.


All you have to do if you want to get a reading is move into a recline position. Like other bikes in the category, it also has an LCD display tracking information such as speed, time, distance, and calories burned. This bike comes recommended for seniors because of its use for rehabilitation post-surgery. 

PROS

  • Relatively easy assembly
  • Adjustable so might be helpful to people with certain conditions
  • Affordably priced

CONS

  • Some have had challenges with the load adjustment wires
  • Doesn’t include certain quality of life features like a phone holder

Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike

Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike

The Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike is a very popular choice for seniors, as it’s one of the best product offerings in its category. One of the most attractive features on this bike is the inclusion of Bluetooth connectivity. You can set, track, and monitor your progress with apps such as MyFitnessPal, UA Record, and Explore the World.


The console comes with two backlit LCD screens with 29 workout programs installed on the computer. It supports four user profiles. With the media shelf, you can put up your phone or tablet for entertainment while exercising.


The Schwinn 270 has a contoured and ventilated seat on a rail that you can easily adjust on your lower back. It has 25 levels of resistance for a challenging workout. And with a high inertia weighted flywheel, you can exercise smoothly and quietly, without disturbing anyone else. For more details, check out my full review of the Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike.

PROS

  • Reasonably comfortable seat
  • Great for improving cardio fitness
  • Easy to change resistance levels

CONS

  • The heart rate sensors in the handles are suboptimal for some
  • Built-in speakers are not excellent

What Are the Benefits of a Recumbent Exercise Bike for Seniors?

The bucket seat on a recumbent bike allows you to sit in a reclined position, taking the strain off of your midsection and the lumbar vertebrae of your spine. This is why recumbent bikes are considered ideal for users with back problems that want to improve their cardiovascular health.

As the pedals are positioned to the front of your body, a recumbent exercise bike’s seat can distribute your body weight across the padded area where you are seated. When you make a comparison with conventional bikes, you’ll find that they have much smaller seats abd no back support.

This means that most of your torso’s weight is on your ischial tuberosities or “sitting bones.” When you put too much pressure on this area of your body, it can compress the perineal nerve. It has been associated with impotence in men and other kinds of urogenital disorders that no one wants.

When you’re seated on a good recumbent bike, your head is in a natural position where it’s supported by your spine. This is much better than being forced into a downward stare as you would be on a conventional upright bike. With this natural head position, your neck can relax, thus preventing neck spasms or strains. This is why recumbent bikes are such a great solution for people who suffer from neck or other upper spinal problems.

The human body isn’t meant to have weight brought down on their wrists, arms, and shoulders, but this is what happens when you’re riding an upright bike. This is why people suffering from joint pain often find upright bikes to be unsuitable. Recumbent bikes allow your hands and arms to be in a relaxed position where they won’t have to support the rest of your weight.

So, based on the information above, you can see that recumbent bikes reduce the strain on throughout your upper body and can be used for longer periods than a conventional upright bike.

The problem might be that because there is such a huge range of bikes, it might be difficult to choose which one is best for you.

What’s the Best Recumbent Bike for You?

When examining the selection of different styles and types of bikes, you’ll need to be able to identify which items are suitable for you and which aren’t. Here are a few factors you should consider: 

What’s your budget?

Recumbent exercise bikes can run at a wide range of prices. While the less expensive bikes generally run over $100, the more expensive models can run for as much as $1000 or over. Although a higher price doesn’t always mean than the product will be higher quality, usually the more expensive bikes provide the best value. That said, you can still find a good quality bike without spending a fortune. Before choosing a recumbent bike, you’ll want to make a firm decision on how much you intend to spend and only consider bikes that are in your budget. Another thing to consider is where you’re going to set up the bike and whether or not it might damage your flooring. You might want to look into getting a mat to protect your home from costly damage. 

How much room is there in your home gym?

While some recumbent bikes are large and require a larger amount of space, while others are foldable and can be broken down for compact storage. There are some recumbent bikes that aren’t going to be particularly suited for your needs. The larger bikes tend to be the more expensive ones. Most recumbent bike manufacturers will state the assembled dimensions of their products, so always make sure you have enough space before purchasing.

What kind of features are you looking for?

While exercise bikes used to have more diverse options when it came to resistance, there’s pretty much only one prominent form of resistance these days, and that’s magnetic resistance. This works by using magnets to create eddy currents, acting as brakes on the bike’s flywheel connected to the pedals. This is the best available system at the moment. Other kinds of resistance, such as fan resistance or direct-contact are relatively uncommon in recumbent bikes. 

And here are some other features you might look for on a recumbent bike:

Digital LCD screen console

A digital screen provides the details you need to evaluate your workout. Low-cost bikes will typically have some kind of console that provides basic information with screens that aren’t generally backlit. The higher-end models will usually have 2 backlit models and provide a wider array of data. 

Workout programs

Most consoles on recumbent bikes allow you to select from different programs you can use to monitor your progress and set goals. This kind of structured goal setting can be very effective at keeping you motivated over the long-term. Many bikes come installed with extensive programs that will help you improve in whatever part of your fitness you’re focused on.

User Profiles

If you want your recumbent bike to provide a custom experience for your specific attributes such as weight, height, age, goals, and so on, you’re going to want user profiles. Especially if you're going to share your recumbent bikes with another person like your partner.

Heart rate monitor

This is another feature worth looking for depending on your personal needs. Some say that the inbuilt heart rate monitors on many exercise bikes tend to be inaccurate and therefore worthless. However, there are some recumbent bikes that allow you to sync up with an external chest strap heart rate monitor, which should give you more accurate information. Just keep in mind that not all chest strap monitors work. 

Tablet or Phone Shelf

If you want to read, watch a movie, or check your email while you exercise, you’re going to need a media shelf. Most modern exercise machines have one of these, but there are some exceptions.

Speakers for Audio

Do you want to be able to listen to music without using earbuds? Some machines come with speakers installed to play audio from your device. They may not always be high quality, but it may be more comfortable than headphones.

USB Charging Port

Some recumbent bikes allow you to charge your mobile devices while you’re exercising. You’re going to need a USB cable to take advantage of this feature, but they should come included with bikes that have ports. 

Bluetooth Connectivity

High-end exercise bikes will sometimes come with the ability for you to pair your mobile device to your machine via bluetooth. You can also use the bluetooth connection to play music, then download your workout information and import it into apps like MyFitnessPal. You can track your progress for various exercise and fitness goals. 

Only higher-end recumbent bikes will have these kinds of features, while the least expensive will only have few of them or less. More of these features should improve your experience and make your bike more convenient to use. So, before purchasing, make sure you decide which items are important to you and only consider the bikes that have what you want. 

Other Considerations When Buying An Exercise Bike For Seniors 

There are different considerations that you might make as a senior when choosing an exercise bike. You need a bike that meets your needs, that can be used with your current physical challenges. In this section, I would like to highlight some other things you might want to keep in mind when shopping for exercise equipment. 

Fitness Goals - When deciding on an exercise bike, it's essential to determine your fitness goals. What do you hope to achieve by using a bike? Is it just to get your heart rate up? Or are you trying to burn calories to lose weight? With these things in mind, you can more easily decide on a model that's right for you. 

Footprint - If you lack space, you're going to want to focus on finding as compact a bike as possible. Before making a purchase, you might want to measure the area where you intend to set up your exercise bike.  

Tracking Progress - All of the bikes in this list have LCD displays that can be used to track fitness data as you exercise. Some are even compatible with software that you can use on your phone. Having this information is helpful as it may provide motivation, and keep you working out when you feel things aren’t getting any better.

Safety and Comfort - These kinds of considerations speak for themselves. If it’s going to be dangerous for you to be too high off the ground, a recumbent stationary bike allows you to work out in a reclined position that might be ideal.

Cost - The last big item on the list is the price. Getting some exercise can be costly, but it shouldn't break the bank. However, the best quality of equipment tends to be a little more pricey. Just make sure to evaluate what's most important to you. For example, if the display is too challenging to read, you might want to look for a bike with a bigger console. 

Conclusion

Recumbent bikes are an excellent way for seniors to get exercise at home. They're also one of the safest kinds, as it's easy to mount and get off. 

Questions and Answers

Are exercise bikes suitable for seniors?

For many seniors, walking or jogging can stress joints. Cycling is a low impact form of aerobic activity that can be ideal for older people who are experiencing difficulties with balance and strength. 

What is the best stationary bike for seniors?

The ANCHEER Indoor cycling bike is one of the best stationary bikes for seniors. Check the list above for details. 

How do I choose a recumbent bike for seniors?

When looking to buy a recumbent bike, you should make sure it has all the critical items that you’re looking for. Recumbent exercise bikes should have a clear display, built-in body workout programs, a form of heart-rate monitoring, and adjustable seating.

Are recumbent bikes good for seniors?

When you sit on a recumbent bike for seniors, you are in a recumbent position. These kinds of bikes prioritize comfort. While they provide a great cardio workout, you’re likely to get faster results rising on an indoor cycles or upright bikes.  

Do you burn more calories on a recumbent or upright bike?

In theory, they say that a recumbent stationary bike burns fewer calories than the same amount of time spent on a recumbent bike. You’d actually burn the most calories pedaling intensely on the best recumbent bike than at a moderate level on an upright bike. 

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