Best recumbent bike 2022: Our top picks for home workouts

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There's a lot to factor into finding the best recumbent bike, especially as it can be challenging trying to decide whether it would be more beneficial for you than a spin or upright alternative.

To help you decide, we've compiled a list of some of the top picks based on features, price, and reviews so you can get a better sense of what the very best recumbent bikes have to offer

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That said, the main benefit of a recumbent machine is that it places less strain on your joints, making it an ideal option to consider if you have arthritis, for example, but still want to get the recommended 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week.

So, if a recumbent bike sounds right for you, then we've got you covered.

From machines packed with technology, like this NordicTrack Commercial VR21, to simply one of the best exercise bikes around in this Schwinn 270, we've got everything you need right here.

We've also answered some of the most commonly asked questions surrounding recumbent machines to help you work out whether they're right for your home or garage setup. With that in mind, let's get into it...

Best recumbent bike

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Best all-round recumbent bike - Schwinn 270

Best recumbent bike Schwinn product image of a black bike with an LCD screen.
Credit: Schwinn
Brand: Schwinn | Dimensions: 64 x 27.7 x 49.9" | Max Weight: 136kg | Resistance: Friction

Recumbent bikes can be a great way to train your legs without putting as much strain on your joints, and the Schwinn 270 seems to be a particularly well-rounded machine for the job.

It comes with 50+ global routes which the bike will auto-adjust in real-time to your speed, allowing you to vary your workouts each time.

Moreover, it comes with 25 levels of resistance for when you want to up the difficulty and intensity, thus putting it in line to be considered one of the best exercise machines for weight loss as well.

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If you're unsure of how to make things harder, then the LCD screen allows you to view 29 pre-planned workout programmes to help get you started.

All in all, we feel this recumbent machine is well worth considering if you're looking to upgrade your home gym.

Best budget recumbent bike - Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Bike

Best recumbent bike Sunny Health & Fitness product image of light grey framed bike.
Credit: Sunny Health & Fitness
Brand: Sunny Health & Fitness | Dimensions: 46 x 24.5 x 38" | Max Weight: 300lbs | Resistance: Magnetic

We've featured Sunny Health & Fitness before in our list of the best rowing machines as the company manufacturers, in our opinion, a great selection of cardio equipment.

This recumbent machine looks as though it continues this trend as it features 8 levels of magnetic resistance and a digital display, all for a relatively inexpensive price.

Furthermore, it comes with pulse sensors on the handlebars so you can track your heart rate during your ride to give you an indication as to how hard you're working.

Ultimately, if you're looking for a relatively inexpensive recumbent bike, then this might be the machine for you, especially as it argues a strong case for featuring in our list of the best exercise bikes under 500 list as well.

Best smart recumbent bike - NordicTrack Commercial VR21

Best recumbent bike NordicTrack product image of recumbent bike featuring a mesh back rest to the chair.
Credit: NordicTrack
Brand: NordicTrack | Dimensions: 61.1 x 24.2 x 54.6" | Max Weight: 400lbs | Resistance: Magnetic

If you're willing to spend a little more to get a recumbent bike packed with smart tech, then this NordicTrack Commercial VR21 could be your answer.

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It comes with a 5" backlit display, providing information on your calories burned, distance covered, and cadence; plus you also get 2" speakers to project high-quality sound for your iFIT routines.

On the topic of iFIT, you get a complimentary 30-day iFIT membership upon purchase of this bike which grants you access to live streams and on-demand workouts as you exercise.

On the whole, this recumbent bike seems to be a pretty advanced bit of kit which is why we feel it deserves a place on our list.

Best recumbent bike for beginners - JEEKEE Recumbent Bike

Best recumbent bike JEEKEE product image of a black bike with orange details on the side.
Credit: JEEKEE
Brand: JEEKEE | Dimensions: Unspecified | Max Weight: 300lbs | Resistance: Magnetic

If you're just starting your fitness journey, then the JEEKEE Recumbent Bike should help ease you into a workout routine.

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It features 8 neodymium magnets to provide you with different resistance levels, so you should be able to adjust the difficulty to suit your experience.

It also comes with a large seat and backrest to help keep you comfortable whilst exercising, particularly in your lower back.

We feel it's also worth mentioning that the JEEKEE Recumbent Bike comes with both an LCD display and a tablet holder so you can kick back and watch your favourite TV shows whilst you ride this bike.

Best recumbent bike for home gyms - Exerpeutic 400XL

Best recumbent bike Exerpeutic product image of a grey-framed bike with the pedals lower, giving you a more upright position.
Credit: Exerpeutic
Brand: Exerpeutic | Dimensions: 20 x 17 x 54" | Max Weight: 145lbs | Resistance: Magnetic

When kitting out your home gym, you're probably conscious of trying to save as much space as possible to make room for more equipment.

Thankfully, not only is the Exerpeutic 400XL small to start with, but it is also foldable so it can be stored away far easier when it's not in use.

In terms of difficulty, the bike features 8 resistance levels plus a V-belt double-drive transmission system, designed to ensure you're getting a challenging leg and cardio workout in.

Moreover, it comes with an LCD display that tracks distance, calories, time, speed, and heart rate, which, we think, makes this recumbent bike a good option to consider.

Frequently asked questions about recumbent bikes

People often have a tonne of questions about recumbent bikes, but we're here to clear up a few common queries to help you make your purchase.

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How do you use a recumbent bike?

Like with most cycling equipment, the key to a recumbent bike is to coordinate your legs for a smooth, steady pedalling motion.

Simply sit on the seat, making sure it's in a position in which you can comfortably reach the peddles, then lock your feet in under the straps.

Begin pedalling with your legs and you should be good to go. Make sure you sit straight and in good posture whilst exercising to avoid damaging your back.

We'd also advise you to jot down the resistance your bike is set to after each session to help you keep track of your progress.

What's the difference between a recumbent bike and regular exercise bike?

Strictly speaking, a recumbent bike is just a specific type of exercise bike.

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With the majority of exercise bikes, the saddle is positioned in such a way that you're sat in an upright position whilst you ride.

By contrast, the seat of a recumbent bike is positioned in a more laid-back position and the bike itself is much lower to the ground, which is more beneficial for longer, more relaxing workouts.

As a result, a recumbent bike is far less taxing on your joints. You're also far more stable on a recumbent machine so should suit longer, more relaxed cardio sessions.

How long should you use a recumbent bike?

Recumbent bikes typically offer much slower and less intense workouts than some of the best spin bikes for example.

However, due to the laid-back seating, you'll probably be more inclined to stay riding a recumbent bike for longer as the chair is normally more comfortable than a saddle.

With that being said, we'd recommend at least 30 mins of continuous cycling (plus a warm-up) as a good rule to follow for longer sessions; but you can also complete high-intensity interval sets with a recumbent bike if you prefer that method.

How do you maintain a recumbent bike?

In order to ensure your recumbent bike runs smoothly, we'd recommend cleaning the flywheel and internal mechanisms from time to time to remove any dust and/or dirt that may cause friction.

It may also be beneficial to keep the moving components lubricated for the same reason.

In terms of fitness tracking, you might need to calibrate the speed and heart rate sensors occasionally to ensure you're getting the most accurate readings possible.

Read More: Best ellipticals under 500 - Our top picks