An exercise bike is a bicycle that goes nowhere. They are used for cardiovascular conditioning while staying indoors.

Exercise bikes come in several styles. First, a regular mobile bike can be placed on a stand so it just “spins its wheels” while being pedaled. Second there can be a machine that begins as an exercise bike and is never meant to move. In this class exercise bikes can be a recumbent cycle or and upright cycle. Recumbent cycles place the rider in a chaise like seat with the petals in front. This is easier on the tailbone and the lower back. Upright cycles have the “rider” sitting or standing just like a regular moving bicycle, pedaling while holding onto a handlebar. Dual action cycles also have moving handlebars and exercise the upper body.

Exercise bikes come if varying degrees of fanciness. Mileage, calories burnt, distance pedaled and heart rate can be tracked. Video screens can show a movie or a simulation of a path the rider can imagine s/he is pedaling. Resistance can be varied manually or automatically to follow pre-programmed patterns. Resistance can be created by use of a belt, brake or fan. Magnetic resistance systems are the only type that allow the use of pre-programmed patterns.

Some types might use a belt, brake or fan to create resistance. Others employ a magnetic-resistance system, which can range from a simple manually set magnet to smooth, quiet electromagnetic performance. Only electromagnetic bikes allow you to use pre-set programs.


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