Over recent years, spinning classes have exploded in popularity in health clubs all around the world. However, increasingly people are looking to incorporate these space efficient workout machines into their home gyms. Got a TV with a decent sound system? Then why not set about creating your own spin studio?
Spinning is a great way to get fit, and these bikes offer much more versatility than merely participating in classes. They’re well suited to the high intensity nature of these classes, but can just as easily be used to replicate longer rides or even more intense, Tabata or HiiT style workouts. Here is our spinning bike buyers guide, which is fully updated for 2014.
So what should you look for if you’re looking to purchase an indoor exercise bike?
Distinguishing between the purpose of the spinning bike
Here at BurnTech.TV, we talk a lot about different exercise equipment. One common theme is the distinction between equipment which is aimed at the home and equipment that’s aimed at commercial gyms.
Home Use: This band of equipment is proposed for home usage and as such, any equipment marked with this moniker will not be designed to withstand incessant use. Home based spinning bikes will have their benefits – they’re more likely to be portable, lightweight and to be simple to move around.
Commercial Use: Commercial equipment will typically have a great range of functions but they principally differ because of their more rugged design. You’ll find less of the sleeker, lighter designs in this category of bike, instead finding more rugged and toughened spinners which are designed to withstand multiple classes per day.
Most equipment in this category will feature high temperature treated segments and parts for additional strength and lifetime duration. Most additionally incorporate propelled characteristics like brake-piece frameworks for safety, frameworks for cinch drives, pressure regulating brake levers for safety, and extendable stems to support a greater range of body shapes and sizes.
Purchasing Tips: Here’s our hot tips to make sure you get the best spinning bike for your needs
There are quite a few factors to consider when seeking out the ultimate home gym bike. Below is our quick guide:
Alterability and customising the setup: Choose your bike to take into consideration your body shape, size and stature is a key consideration when it comes to getting the best out of your bike. Failure to find a bike that you’re comfortable on will lead to decreased usage, poorer workouts and in many cases, increased instances of premature wear and tear on the equipment.
Tip: when it comes to spinning bikes, we advise that you always go to a premise where you can try before you buy. They are relatively hard pieces of equipment to buy ‘blind’ over the internet. You can also try in a shop before going online to purchase later.
Tip: Some models let you change the seat entirely. It’s amazing how bigger impact the seat has on the ride – even if you regularly ride in the standing position
Belt not chain drive: Belt drives last longer, perform better, don’t degrade affecting performance as much, are quieter and do not require anything like as much maintenance. Argument settled.
Bike computer: A lot of models do not come with a computer. Without this tool, it’s nearly impossible to properly track your progression. Whether you’re seeking a spinning bike with a built in computer or intending to install your own (many smartphone apps do this nowadays too), it’s well worth considering. Heart arte monitors can provide some of the value, but adding vital stats around distance, time and incline is all valuable.
Tip: spinning apps come in much cheaper than physical cycling computers, with little difference in their functionality.
Fore and Aft handlebars: The handlebars are a huge consideration when it comes to spinning. Most bikes have a range of settings, and the ‘fore and aft’ elements means that you’ll be able to move the handlebars across a greater range of motion in order to find the position that works for you. Not only do such handlebars go back and forwards, but also up and down. Its important to get the bike setup right, allowing you to maintain proper posture at all times.
Flywheel: As a starting point, seek a 40lbs flywheel. Anything less than this will be as good as useless as you begin to progress with your home workouts. Getting the weight right, allows the bike to properly replicate the motion of riding a real bike. Heavier
wheels give greater range, which works back to feeling like your bike is in the right gear. Lighter wheels won’t deliver this, instead leaving the ride feeling ‘light’ and the bike cheap.