I have already reviewed some of the top upright bikes on this site, as well as the top indoor cycling bikes that offer a more intense workout and are more suitable for spinning-type workouts.
However I have yet to review some of the top recumbent exercise bikes, which are more suitable for older people who have back problems or mobility issues (and for people who want a more relaxed workout) because these allow you to pedal away in a seated position with arm supports and a back rest for added comfort.
So I want to put that right by providing you with a comprehensive guide to the best recumbent exercise bikes that are suitable for home use, starting with some of the low-cost machines and finishing with some of the high quality commercial-grade machines that are available:
Low Cost Recumbent Bikes
Exerpeutic 900XL Recumbent Bike
If you are looking to buy a low-cost recumbent bike for your home, then you should seriously consider buying one of the Exerpeutic models because these are all really well-made.
One of the most popular ones is the Exerpeutic 900XL Recumbent Bike (with pulse) because this is a strong bike that has a large extended weight capacity of 300 pounds, and a variable seat range that makes it suitable for both men and women between 5’3 and 6’3.
There is some assembly required, but this is a fairly simple task, and you should find that once it is fully assembled, it is quiet in operation and offers a challenging workout because there are 8 magnetic resistance levels that you can use if you find the first few levels a little too easy.
Unlike some of the other cheaper models, this one comes with a basic LCD display that enables you to track time, speed, distance, calories and pulse rate (using the built-in pulse monitor), and has transport wheels attached so that you can move it around really easily if required.
So when you also consider that this has an extra wide seat for added comfort and a comfortable backrest, you can hopefully see why this is such a good choice if you are looking for a solid and reliable recumbent bicycle at the lower end of the market.
→ Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike – this is a slightly cheaper model than the one above, but will take up less space in your home because it can be folded away for storage when it is not being used, and offers an equally good workout (read review).
→ Exerpeutic Gold 525XLR Folding Recumbent Bike – this new upgraded version of the 400XL bike is made from 27% more steel for improved strength and performance, and is suitable for larger people because it has an extended weight capacity of 400 pounds and can accommodate users up to 6’5 (read review).
Schwinn A20 Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Schwinn A20 Recumbent Exercise Bike has been available for a good few years now, but it is still a pretty good choice if you don’t want to spend too much money on one of these machines because you get a lot for your money.
This too has 8 magnetic resistance levels, but unlike all of the Exerpeutic bikes listed above, and indeed many of the other low-cost bikes, this one provides you with 7 workout programs that you can use to vary your workouts.
It also has an impressive display unit that not only tells you key performance data such as speed, time, distance, calories and pulse, but also includes some built-in speakers so that you can connect your iPod or phone and listen to music whilst you work out, as well as a media tray if you would prefer to watch TV shows on your tablet or read a book, for example.
So as I said earlier, this really is a feature-packed machine that gives you a lot for your money, despite being one of the cheaper recumbent bikes on the market.
Mid-Range Recumbent Bicycles
Schwinn 230 Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Schwinn A20 is a really good machine for the price, but if your budget can stretch a little further, you might want to consider getting the Schwinn 230 Recumbent Bike because this is an even better machine.
For a start, this particular model has a lot more resistance levels (20) and a lot more workout programs (22) that you can use, and has the ability to save user profiles for two people.
It also has a much more impressive display unit because it has a total of 13 display feedbacks, and has the ability to connect to Schwinn Connect should you wish to analyze your performance data more closely and monitor your progress over time.
The bike itself delivers a really smooth and quiet workout thanks to its high speed high inertia weighted flywheel, and is strong enough to accommodate anyone up to 300 pounds.
It also has a wide vented and contoured seat for added comfort that enables you to get a comfortable workout with no back pain, as well as a 3-speed built-in fan that will cool you down during your workout.
So it is easy to see why this particular model is so much better than many of the cheaper low-cost models.
→ Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike – this is an enhanced version of the 230 model that comes with 25 resistance levels and 29 workout programs, and saves user settings for up to four people instead of two (read review).
Exerpeutic 4000 Magnetic Recumbent Bike
Another mid-range bike worth considering is the Exerpeutic 4000 Magnetic Recumbent Bike because this is Exerpeutic’s most advanced recumbent bike.
This particular model comes with a larger, more impressive display unit than all of their cheaper models because it has mobile app tracking and built-in Bluetooth technology to enable you to monitor your performance results anywhere you like using your iOS or Android device.
Plus unlike all of their cheaper models, this one comes with 12 workout programs and 24 resistance settings to provide you with a wide variety of workout options, all of which are controlled electronically via the display unit.
From a practical perspective, the Exerpeutic also scores highly because it has a large weight capacity of 325 pounds, and comes with padded elbow rests and an extra large ‘Air Soft’ seat that is 3.5 inches thick and has aerodynamic air flow for maximum comfort. The seat can also be adjusted to accommodate users between 5’0 and 6’3.
This bike also has a precision balanced flywheel and a V-belt drive that helps provide you with a smooth, quiet and consistent workout.
Therefore if you feel that the low-cost Exerpeutic bikes are a little too basic for your liking, you might want to consider paying a little extra for this one instead because this has a more advanced display unit, a lot more workout options and a more comfortable seat.
Nautilus R614 Recumbent Bike
One final bike that you might want to consider buying is the Nautilus R614 Recumbent Bike because this is not only one of the best-looking bikes in this price range, but it is also loaded with extra features.
It is actually very similar to the Schwinn 230 in terms of features (which is unsurprising because Schwinn are part of the Nautilus group) because it provides you with 20 levels of resistance and has 22 workout programs that you can use.
It also has user profiles for two people, just like the Schwinn 230, and has many of the same features, which include a pulse monitor, an MP3 dock, a media tray, a cooling fan, built-in speakers and a Dual Track display unit with 13 different readouts.
The one thing that gives this model the edge is that this Nautilus R614 has the ability to connect with Nautilus Connect and the Myfitnesspal app, which you may find useful if you like to analyze your data, whereas the Schwinn 230 can only connect to the Schwinn Connect app as far as I can tell.
Apart from that, these two models are very similar in terms of features. It’s just the look and the design that are very slightly different.
→ Nautilus R616 Recumbent Bike – this enhanced model comes with Bluetooth connectivity, a more comfortable padded seat and a blue backlit display unit, and has 25 resistance levels and 29 workout programs, as well as four user profiles and some oversized deluxe pedals (read review).
Diamondback Fitness 510SR Recumbent Bike
If you have a good-sized budget to spend on one of these machines, you might want to consider buying the award-winning Diamondback Fitness 510SR Recumbent Bike because this is a very strong bike that is clearly built to last, unlike some of the cheaper models.
However it is not just the build quality that impresses because it also delivers a smooth and quiet workout thanks to the frictionless eddy current braking system, and has a range of workout options with its 16 resistance settings and 20 workout programs.
In addition, it comes with a bright blue LCD display so that you can see your performance data clearly and easily, and includes a built-in cooling fan and quick-set program keys so that you can change the program really easily.
Plus it also has a foldaway magazine rack and an integrated sound system with MP3 connectivity so that you can listen to your favorite music, and if you want to watch the TV in the background, you can adjust the whole console downwards if required.
So although this is quite an expensive machine, it does still represent good value for money on the whole when you bear in mind the quality of construction, the smoothness of the workout and the range of extra features.
→ Diamondback Fitness 910SR Recumbent Bike – this bike is a little heavier and has a taller backrest, and is more suitable for the serious fitness enthusiast because it has 32 resistance settings and 35 workout programs.
Sole Fitness R92 Recumbent Bike
Another top-end bike that will give you a smooth and comfortable workout is the Sole Fitness R92 Recumbent Bike.
This bike is said to be ideal for anyone who suffers from any kind of back, foot or joint problems because the foot pedals are perfectly aligned in the optimal position and the back rest is padded and fully adjustable.
It is also exceptionally strong and sturdy, and loaded with a range of extra features, as you might expect from a bike in this price range.
For example, there are some built-in speakers and a cooling fan, as well as an MP3-compatible sound system and a water bottle holder.
It doesn’t necessarily have quite as many workout programs as some of the other machines in this price bracket (six standard programs, two custom programs and two heart rate programs), but it still has a smooth magnetic resistance system with 20 levels of resistance that will challenge people of all fitness levels.
Plus it makes up for this by offering one of the most comfortable pain-free riding experiences that you will find on any recumbent exercise bike. Therefore you will be able to use this machine over and over again without experiencing any discomfort in your feet, joints or back.
Sole Fitness LCR Light Commercial Recumbent Bike
The Sole Fitness LCR Light Commercial Recumbent Bike is intended to be used in a light commercial setting, such as an apartment building, hotel or health club, for example, so it is therefore more than suitable for home use.
It is easily the most expensive bike featured on this page, but it also one of the best because it is exceptionally strong and sturdy with a weight limit of 350 pounds, and delivers a smooth and consistent workout that is extremely quiet in operation.
This too provides you with ten workout programs in total, like the R92 model above, and comes with a very large display unit that has a built-in sound system, an MP3 port and a cooling fan.
However once again Sole Fitness have made a real effort to align the foot pedals in the correct position to avoid any kind of discomfort, and have included a very comfortable seat that should prevent any lower back pain, and it is this, along with the strong durable frame, that really sets it apart from many of the cheaper models.
Additional Product Reviews
In addition to the top-rated recumbent bicycles listed above, here are some of the other recumbent machines that have been reviewed on this site:
→ Stamina Total Body Elite – this particular model has hand pedals that you can use in conjunction with the foot pedals to provide you with an upper body workout that tones your arms, shoulders and back.
→ NordicTrack GX 4.7 – this is an affordable recumbent machine for the home that is compatible with iFit so that you can experience authentic real-life cycling routes from around the world, and has lots of resistance levels and workout apps and extra features.
→ Sunny SF-RB4602 – this is a strong entry-level recumbent bike from Sunny Health & Fitness that has an extended weight capacity of 350 pounds, and is suitable for people of all heights.
→ Sunny SF-RB4601 – this is another new model from Sunny Health & Fitness that is slightly cheaper in price, but is still strong enough to support anyone up to 300 pounds, and still delivers a quiet and comfortable workout experience.
→ ProGear 555 LXT – this small and compact machine is one of the most affordable recumbent bikes on the market, and benefits from having 14 levels of resistance, a quiet belt drive system and a strong steel frame construction.
→ Marcy ME-709 – one of the oldest recumbent bikes reviewed on this site, this top-selling recumbent machine has a large weight capacity of 300 pounds thanks to its durable steel frame, and has 8 levels of magnetic resistance for people of all fitness levels.
→ Fitness Reality R4000 – this is a low-cost entry-level machine that is suitable for multiple users because it can be used by anyone up to 250 pounds who is between 5’0 and 6’3, and benefits from having a workout goal setting computer display.