Recommendations for stationary bikes or other indoor exercise equipment?
November 22, 2020 8:37 PM   Subscribe

Best brands and features to consider?

With Covid looking like it will be a major concern until at least the summer and my wife’s and I uncomfortableness with going to the gym we are considering purchasing an indoor stationary bike or some other indoor exercise equipment. Are their any recommended indoor stationary bikes? We are willing to consider other indoor exercise equipment but we have limited space to store and use it.

We considered buying a bicycle trainer but we would then need to get a frame that would fit both of us. This led us to consider stationary bikes. My only hesitancy is that I think I would something that gives more of a full body workout like a rowing machine or Nordic track. My wife really likes cycling though and I don’t mind it. We would like to like to keep the cost somewhere below $650 or so. This probably rules out connected bikes like Peloton and similar models.

What are some features that you consider really nice to have in a stationary bike? Easy to adjust for different size people, quiet, reliable, comfortable, etc.

Any particular brands that you would recommend?
posted by cycleback to Health & Fitness (12 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I bought an Exerpeutic folding recumbent (the 400XL; $180) back in May, and it’s been much better than the cost would suggest. Went for the 300lb variant even though I don’t weigh that much on the idea that stouter pieces would mean less wiggling, which I believe has proven to be correct. Also, nearly silent magnetic friction adjustment, no constant loud whirring while in use.

I’m 6’4” and am at the upper end of the bike’s adjustability, btw. Still, big win for the money.
posted by aramaic at 9:12 PM on November 22, 2020

I am in love with my WaterRower. I get a full-body workout plus the tingle of ASMR via the whoosh whoosh of the paddles going through water in the chamber. Bit more than $650 new but secondhand ones can be bought for less.
posted by Thella at 9:40 PM on November 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I forgot to mention that we were considering the Synergy Pro Magnetic Indoor Cycling Bike.
posted by cycleback at 9:52 PM on November 22, 2020

FYI, I believe you can sign up for the Peloton app and use the classes on non-connected bikes or treadmills, although I think you miss out on some functionality.
posted by MadamM at 10:36 PM on November 22, 2020

Concept 2 rowing machine has been awesome for me these past few weeks! The dampened fan resistance allows me to have high intensity workouts, and there’s no water to keep track of. The computer works well with their app so that I can sync my workouts to Strava, and the community is very robust around this machine in terms of technique guidance and workouts.
posted by oceanjesse at 5:39 AM on November 23, 2020 [2 favorites]

Yes, you can use the peloton app with any bike. It’s $12.99/mo and the only functionality you miss is the leaderboard. There’s a FB group for app users that focuses a lot on what bikes people have. The most popular ones are the Schwinn IC4 and the Echelon Connect.
posted by HotToddy at 6:09 AM on November 23, 2020

I'm also a very, very happy Water Rower owner and in particular I love how easily it can be stored in my relatively small home. I have friends with Concept2 rowers and they love 'em too.

NordicTrack products are generally pretty high-quality but not necessarily a great bang for the buck, and most of my friends consider then passed on them because they're also generally pretty large and we all live in smallish homes in a city.
posted by Tomorrowful at 6:21 AM on November 23, 2020

I've had SO much luck with my Sunny Health and Fitness spin bike ... it shipped quickly, was easy to put together, and combines with the Peleton app to give me a VERY good in-house spin class experience. It's sturdy, it's not loud, I am very pleased with the purchase!
posted by mccxxiii at 8:16 AM on November 23, 2020

Another vote for Concept 2 rower. Works for me and also for Mr Tangerine Man who is fourteen inches taller.
posted by tangerine at 12:40 PM on November 23, 2020 [2 favorites]

My wife loves the Sunny bike we got, and we recently added a rower by the same company. I think each clocked in around $150. Rower is not very portable, fwiw.
posted by troywestfield at 6:06 AM on November 24, 2020

another vote for any of the not-so-pricey recumbent bikes...I just gave my first one away and bought a second. I think the main thing to remember is that you aren't training for a triathlon, right? The recumbent allows you to pedal while you read, or read metafilter. I put mine in front of my xbox--must ride to play--and that has been a life changer.
posted by th3ph17 at 9:43 AM on November 24, 2020

a concept2 rower, if oiled and maintaned well, will last decades and many millions of meters (many thousand km). There are model C rowers, from the mid 90's, that are in use regularly still running well, with only things like seat roller replacements that have done way more than 10,000 km, and they ain't exceptional.....
posted by lalochezia at 11:28 AM on November 24, 2020

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