Indoor cycling bikes have become very popular in recent years because unlike an upright bike, you can use them in both a seated and a standing position, which makes them suitable for indoor road training and for spinning workouts, for example. In addition, they can also be used by men and women who simply want to burn lots of calories because they generally offer a more intense workout than an upright stationary bike.
These machines are commonly referred to as spin bikes or spinning bikes, but these terms should only be used to refer to bikes specifically made by Mad Dogg Athletics because they are both trademarked terms. The correct term for these bikes is indoor cycling bikes, and it is this term that I shall use to describe them in the rest of this article.
So which ones are considered to be the best indoor cycling bikes right now in 2018? Well full reviews of all the top models are now available on this site, but here is a guide to some of the best ones that you can buy in each of the three main price categories:
Top-Of-The-Range Indoor Cycling Bikes
Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle
If you are looking to buy the best indoor exercise bike on the market and have no budgetary constraints, then the Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle has to be at the top of your list.
This particular bike is commonly used in many gyms and in many group cycling classes because it is strong enough to withstand regular use, and delivers an exceptionally smooth workout with a seamless transition when you adjust the resistance level. It is is also extremely quiet in operation, as you may well have discovered yourself if you have ever used it in your local gym.
This bike is suitable for people of all fitness levels because there are 24 magnetic resistance levels, and because there are fore/aft and up/down adjustments on both the seat and the handlebars, it is suitable for people of all shapes and sizes (up to a maximum of 350 lbs) and is easy enough to find a comfortable and realistic riding position.
With regards to extras, there is a backlit Bluetooth computer display that can connect to apps on your smartphone or tablet device, and will display key data, such as time, distance, RPM, watts and pulse.
It also includes a water bottle holder, a tablet holder for your smartphone or tablet and some good quality pedals, and as part of a New Year promotion, you will also get a special bundle that includes a free floor mat and stretch pads.
However it is the solid construction and the overall feel of the workout that really sets this one apart from the rest.
BodyCraft SPT-MAG Indoor Cycle
Another top-of-the-range exercise bike that is also very highly rated by group cycling instructors and students is the BodyCraft SPT-MAG Indoor Cycle.
BodyCraft may not necessarily be a household name, but they do produce some outstanding training bikes, and this is arguably one of their most popular models.
This machine has a heavy duty rust-resistant steel frame that can accommodate users to 350 pounds, and has multiple adjustments on both the seat and the handlebars to ensure that people of all heights can use this bike. It also has a number of grip positions on the handlebars so that you can adopt a wide range of riding positions.
However once again it is the quality of the workout that separates this machine from many of the cheaper models that are available because the flywheel and the belt drive are made from high quality components, and deliver the smoothest workout possible.
The magnetic eddy current resistance can be adjusted using the resistance knob and will respond instantly to every little adjustment, and you can therefore make your workouts as easy or as demanding as you like.
This SPT-MAG cycle requires no maintenance at all and is virtually silent in operation, so this really is a great machine for your home or gym.
→ BodyCraft SPR – this more expensive model is very similar to the SPT-MAG model except that it comes with its own console display and has fixed resistance levels (16 in total) instead of continuous resistance (read review).
Mid-Range Indoor Cycling Bikes
Sole Fitness SB700 Exercise Bike
If you cannot justify paying nearly $1500 – $2000 for a top-end machine, but still want to buy a good quality exercise bike, then the Sole Fitness SB700 Exercise Bike is a great alternative.
As many users have pointed out, this particular model is on a par with many of the bikes that you might find in your local gym because it has a heavy duty 48-pound flywheel that delivers a smooth, quiet and consistent workout, and has a very solid frame that can accommodate users up to 300 lbs, and comes with a lifetime warranty.
This particular model comes with a computer display that helps you track time, speed, distance, calories and RPM and is compatible with a wireless chest strap if you want to monitor your pulse. It also has fore/aft and up/down adjustments on both the seat and the handlebars to help you find a comfortable and realistic riding position.
So if you are looking for an exercise bike that is built to last and delivers a smooth, comfortable and realistic riding experience, this model from Sole Fitness is well worth considering.
→ Sole Fitness SB900 Exercise Bike – this one uses a slightly different magnetic resistance system which is said to be slightly quieter, and also gives you the option of using toe clips or clipless SPD pedals because it includes both.
Spinner Sprint Premium Authentic Indoor Cycle by Madd Dogg
Another mid-range indoor cycle that represents excellent value for money is the Spinner Sprint Premium Authentic Indoor Cycle.
This particular model is manufactured by Madd Dogg Athletics, so it can legally be referred to as a spinning bike, and is actually designed to be used for commercial use. Therefore if you do decide to buy this machine for your home, it is likely to last you a very long time.
It comes with a heavy-duty 43-pound flywheel and a smooth chain drive system, and you will find that it feels just like a conventional road bike.
So it is ideal if you are a cyclist who likes to train indoors, or if you enjoy performing spinning workouts, for example, particularly as it includes four spinning DVDs to get you started.
Spinner S3 Indoor Cycling Bike – this is a cheaper model from the same company that has a smaller 31-pound flywheel, but still delivers a smooth and comfortable workout and is adjustable enough to be used by anyone between 4’10 and 6’7 (read review).
Diamondback Fitness 510IC Indoor Cycle
One bike that has been available for a good few years now, but still remains very popular, is the Diamondback Fitness 510IC Indoor Cycle.
This exercise bicycle has a super quiet belt drive system that guarantees a smooth workout, and has a fully adjustable seat and handlebars to help you find a comfortable riding position. What I particularly like about this one is that it comes with 16 levels of magnetic resistance, and unlike most indoor cycles of this type, comes with 14 workout programs.
The frame itself is very strong and stable, and as well as having a good quality backlit LCD display, it has a few useful features, such as a built-in pulse monitor on the handlebars and computer-controlled resistance.
The only drawback is that the flywheel is a little lighter than some of the other bikes in this price range at just 32 pounds, but most users haven’t reported any problems, and overall this is still a very strong machine that does deliver a really good workout.
Low-Cost Indoor Cycles
Sunny Health & Fitness Belt Drive Indoor Cycling Bike
If you are looking for a good quality machine but don’t necessarily have a large budget, you should seriously consider taking a look at some of Sunny Health & Fitness’ indoor cycling bikes because these all have a solid build construction and offer a really good workout.
The pick of the bunch is arguably the Sunny Health & Fitness Belt Drive Bike because this is exceptionally strong with a weight capacity of 275 pounds, and comes with a heavy-duty 49-pound flywheel that provides extra stability and delivers a smooth and realistic ride similar to an outdoor bike.
Plus as the name suggests, it has a belt drive system instead of a chain drive, which means that it is a lot smoother and a lot quieter in operation, and doesn’t require any ongoing maintenance.
This machine has toe cages to keep your feet in place, multi-grip handlebars that can be adjusted upwards and downwards, and a four-way adjustable seat. Therefore it is very easy to find a comfortable riding position.
So when you consider that it has a good range of resistance and is stable enough to be used for high intensity workouts and indoor road training in both a seated and a standing position, this entry-level bike is just as good as some of the more expensive models in terms of strength and performance.
→ Sunny Health & Fitness Pro Indoor Cycling Bike – this slightly cheaper model has a chain drive instead of a belt drive and has a slightly lighter flywheel, but it is still a very strong and sturdy bike that delivers a smooth workout (read review).
Fitleader FS1 Stationary Exercise Bike
Another relatively new model that has quickly established itself as one of the top indoor cycles for people on a budget is the Fitleader FS1 Exercise Bike.
This is quite a compact and lightweight training bike, but it is very strong and stable with a weight capacity of 293 pounds, and has an adjustable seat and handlebars that makes it suitable for anyone between 5’1 and 6’2.
Plus although it only has 8 magnetic resistance levels, it offers a serious workout for even the fittest of athletes because the higher resistance levels are said to be extremely challenging.
It is also worth mentioning that this entry-level bike comes with its own LCD display so that you can track your performance, and is one of the few that comes with a holder for your tablet, phone or iPad device should you wish to follow along to an indoor cycling workout on YouTube, for example.
ProGear 100S Indoor Training Cycle
One final exercise bicycle that you might want to consider is the ProGear 100S Indoor Training Cycle because this is one of the most affordable models.
It is not generally a good idea to buy a cheap exercise bike because a lot of them are not exactly built to last, but the ProGear 100S is a really strong bike that has received a lot of positive reviews.
This particular machine can accommodate users up to 250 pounds, and has a cast iron 22-pound flywheel that delivers a smooth and consistent pedal motion.
It also has a quiet chain drive mechanism that simulates outdoor cycling, and is comfortable to use because it has a cushioned ergonomic seat that can be adjusted upwards, downwards, forwards and backwards and has toe cages to keep your feet securely in the pedals.
It should also be pointed out that this particular indoor cycle comes with built-in pulse sensors and a basic LCD computer display to track your performance, which are two features that a lot of indoor training bikes don’t have.
The only real drawback is that it is not suitable for really tall or really short people because the recommended height range is between 5’1 and 6’2, but otherwise this is a strong and sturdy machine that will give you a more intense workout than a standard upright bike.
Additional Product Reviews
The indoor cycling bikes listed above are the ones that we most recommend right now, but here are some of the other models that we have reviewed on this site (in order of price from high to low):
→ Schwinn AC Performance Plus – this top-end bike is a favorite with many gyms because it is really strong and offers a smooth, comfortable and quiet workout experience, and is available with either a chain drive or a belt drive (which is quieter and requires less maintenance).
→ LifeCycle GX – this top-of-the-range indoor cycling bike is a favorite with gym owners and is commonly used in a lot of group cycling classes because of its strength and performance, and its stylish looks.
→ Asuna 7130 Lancer – this indoor cycling bike has a rear flywheel and a quiet belt drive system that is exceptionally smooth and consistent in operation and requires no ongoing maintenance.
→ Asuna 4100 – this commercial-grade machine benefits from having an exceptionally strong frame, a heavy duty 40-pound flywheel and a smooth chain drive transmission system.
→ IRONMAN 510 – this is a very strong well-made bicycle from Ironman Fitness that has a heavy-duty 44-pound flywheel, and comes with a basic LCD display and a free equipment mat.
→ Stamina CPS 9300 – this mid-range bike has a large 40-pound flywheel and a decent LCD display, and is powered by a smooth and quiet belt drive system as opposed to a chain drive mechanism, unlike some of the cheaper models.
→ Reebok 510 – this is a good quality mid-range model that has a large 48-pound flywheel and delivers a smooth and comfortable riding experience (DISCONTINUED).
→ Phoenix 98623 Revolution Cycle Pro II – this is one of the oldest models that we have reviewed on this site, but it is still a good quality entry-level machine because it is very well-made and is clearly built to last.
→ Exerpeutic LX905 – this is quite a new model that comes with its own computer display and pulse sensors, and has a 40-pound flywheel and a 3-piece crank system that provides a smooth and quiet workout experience.
→ Bladez Fitness Fusion GSII – this machine has a high-performance 40-pound flywheel and an exceptionally strong steel frame that can accommodate users up to 275 pounds, and is one of the few entry-level bikes to comes with its own LCD console.
→ Exerpeutic LX7 – this slightly older model is a very strong machine that can support users up to 300 pounds, and as well as including a basic LCD display, it also has a fully adjustable seat and handlebars so that anyone between 5’2 and 6’2 can find a really comfortable riding position.
→ Weslo Pro CTX – this is quite a basic low-cost bike, but it is still a well-made machine that delivers a decent workout (DISCONTINUED).
→ Sunny SF-B1001 – this is an entry-level model that has a 30-pound flywheel and a solid steel frame that can accommodate users up to 220 pounds.
→ XtremepowerUS Indoor Cycle – this is a strong and durable entry-level model that has a weight capacity of 440 pounds, and as well as having a fairly decent LCD display, it is also smooth and quiet in operation.