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What's behind our exercise bike Ratings?

Experts at our National Testing and Research Center tested 8 models in exercise bikes to see which ones perform best.
We look for:
  • Overall score
    This score is based on ergonomics, exercise range, ease of use, construction and user safety. The displayed score is out of a total of 100 points.
  • Ergonomics
    Assesses pedal design, configuration and adjustability of the seat and handlebars, and potential interference of riding positions and motion from the bike itself.
  • Exercise range
    Evaluates the bike's ability to provide various workout intensity for users of different fitness levels.
  • Ease of use
    Assesses display clarity, ease of console operation, function and adjustment of the resistance level.
  • Construction
    Considers the operational sound and the feel of the bike, product defects, and other quality indicators.
  • User safety
    Assesses potential hazards, such as pinch points, brake operation, and stability.
  • Type
    Indicates the category of the exercise bike.


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Recommended exercise bikes

Recommended exercise bikes are standout choices with high scores. They include CR Best Buys, which offer exceptional value. When narrowing your choices, weigh features, price, and attributes that matter to you.
  • Buying Guide
  • Price & Shop

Exercise bike buying guide

The popularity of spinning classes has helped drive interest--and innovation--to the exercise bike category. Whether you're looking for the spin class experience at home, or you're an avid outdoor cyclist who wants to stay in riding shape during bad weather, our Ratings of exercise bikes has something for you.

You can pay anywhere from $200 to $2,000 for a new exercise bike. Pricier machines generally have sturdier designs and more features, but some bargain-priced machines can offer a good workout. Running is the gold standard for cardiorespiratory fitness, but exercise bikes might help strengthen your legs, hips, and glutes more than running because you can ramp up the resistance to work your muscles harder.

There are two kinds of exercise bikes. The traditional upright type resembles a regular bicycle; a recumbent bike has back support. They provide similar workouts; an upright might work your glutes better because you can fully extend your hips. Because body weight is supported, both types are options for people who have difficulty with balance or have lower-limb injuries. A recumbent might be more comfortable for those with back problems.

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