Exercise bikes are among the best cardio-machines to have at home and offer many health and fitness benefits such as weight loss, toning, and strengthening. It’s a good choice for exercisers who tend to skip workouts when the climate is bad and for those who have joint problems that make other kinds of aerobic exercise difficult. To use an exercise bike, you have to ensure it’s the right kind and properly adjusted, then choose your workout according to your fitness goals.

Different Types Of Exercise Bikes On The Market

There are many different kinds of exercise bikes. Traditional upright commercial bikes,  spin bikes , street bikes mounted on an indoor trainer, and recumbent bikes are the most familiar forms of stationary pedaling. However, getting the most from your workout depends upon getting the correct bicycle position before your ride.

Using Your Exercise Bike Effectively:

Starting your exercise bike for the first time can be intimidating. Luckily, it is elementary. The main part of using your exercise bike is set-up.

The Set-Up:

Proper set-up is essential. It will give you an effective exercise and significantly decrease your risk of injury. The four factors to consider include:

Seat Height:

With one leg completely extended on your upright exercise bike in the pedal, you should have only a slight bend in your knee. Make sure you can pedal easily without having to point or flex your foot. Recumbent bike seats adjust forward and backward. Ensure your legs are almost fully extended, with a slight bend in the knee.

Seat Fore & Aft:

On an upright bike, you should adjust the seat fore and aft in addition to height. Ensure that your knees are closely aligned with your ankles during pedaling.

Handlebar Height:

The last thing to fix on an upright bike is handlebar height. Ensure they are in a comfortable position that you can reach easily.  Raise  the handlebars slightly higher to alleviate lower back stress.

Foot Straps:

If your exercise bike has foot straps, make use of this feature. Tighten them easily to your feet. These will help you to both pull and push a much more efficient pedal stroke.

How to Ride an Exercise Bike:

How to use an exercise bike effectively

  1. Sit down on the exercise bike and place your ankle on the exercise bike pedals. Check that each leg is fully straight, with knees fully extended when its pedal is in the position furthest away from you. If so, the seat is in the correct position. If not, adjust the bike seat either up-down or forward-back until your knees are completely extended when your heels are on the bike pedals.
  2. Place the balls of your feet on the bike pedals; this is your correct riding position. Pedal quickly to check your positioning; if you  adjusted the bike seat  as directed in Step 1 you should now have a slight bend in each knee when that foot’s pedal is at the furthest point from you in the cycling motion.
  3. Sit up straight. Think of tucking your chin back, keeping your shoulder blades pressed down and back, and bringing your belly button back toward your spine. Hold the bike handlebars carefully.
  4. Pedal gradually, with even pressure, to power up the bike’s comfort. Press “Quick Start” for quick access to the controls, or select a pre-programmed training option, if available, for more challenge.
  5. Pedal gradually for the first 5 to 10 minutes of your exercise. This is known as a warm-up and allows your body time to adapt to being in a state of motion, decreasing your chance of injury. Most pre-programmed exercise schedules will prompt you to do a warm-up; if you’re using the QuickStart option, you’ll need to watch the timer and monitor yourself; remember to take it easy for the first 5 to 10 minutes.
  6. If present, grasp the silver heart rate monitors to enable the machine to monitor your heart rate. The machine will prompt you to pedal faster or slower to keep your heart rate in the perfect range; most beginners will need to start working at about 70 percent of their maximum heart rate. As your fitness improves, you will be able to work out at a higher level of your maximum heart rate.
  7. Keep pedaling for at least 10 minutes. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest getting at least 150 minutes (30 minutes, 5 days a week) of aerobic exercise every week; but if you can’t pedal for 30 minutes at a time, whether because of health or time concern, it’s okay to break those 30 minutes down into 10-minute sessions.
  8. Cool down, similarly as you warmed up, by pedaling gradually for the last 5 to 10 minutes of your exercise. This enables your body to adapt back to a state of rest.

Advantages Of Using Exercise Bikes

  • Cycling is a non-impact workout which means it is especially suitable for heavier exercisers and anyone who finds running is too hard on their joints.
  • Riding a real bike at night or in traffic can be risky. There are no such dangers with  stationary cycling  making it more secure.
  • You can multitask and catch up on TV, as you don’t need to concentrate too hard on what you’re doing.
  • Develops aerobic and anaerobic fitness depending on how you program your exercises.
  • Workouts can be as complicated or as easy as you like, as most machines are effectively adjustable.
  • Exercise bikes can burn a lot of calories and are great for weight loss or weight control.
  • The exercise bike is very quiet in use, making them perfect for home use.
  • Exercise bikes are easy to use and require very little in the way of unique methods.

Research proves that overweight people can burn calories at faster rates using exercise bikes. Those who exercise longer and with lots of force can burn more of them. Exercise for a half-hour every day, and you’ll lose considerable weight amount.

If you do your exercise bike workouts for weight loss regularly, you’ll notice changes in your fitness level and your waistline in a matter of weeks.

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