What's the best Spin Bike?

If you want to challenge yourself with an effective workout which can approximate more closely a good ride on a road bike, a spin bike is arguably the best choice. You can read more about benefits of a spinning bike here and the difference between a spin bike and an upright exercise bike here. But if you’ve already decided it’s what you want, you’ll be wondering what’s the best spin bike to buy.

So having decided to buy a spin bike, which one should you get?

As usual, it depends largely on your budget. The lower end Spin bikes can be a little dearer than lower end upright exercise bikes; beyond that the prices climb into the thousands but there is something decent in all ranges and I have selected some of the best-selling and high-reviewed ones for comparison. Once you’ve decided which to go for, just click on the model.

What to look for in a Spin bike?

  • Flywheel weight
  • Build quality
  • Technology: Does it display workout information, heart-rate data, or interact with other technologies?

Spin bikes under £250

At the time of writing this is the no.1 best selling spinning bike on Amazon.co.uk. The XS Sports has a powder-coated, heavy duty frame, weighing 35Kg and with a max. user weight of 125Kg. 

It has built-in wheels on the front to help with moving it around. For the budget choice, it has a pretty good feature set.

In general, the heavier the flywheel the better, but THE XS Sports Aerobic Bike has a respectable 15Kg weight flywheel should be enough for a pretty smooth feel via a two-way chain-driven system. 

The friction pad resistance is fully adjustable to your requirements. For comfort, the deep padded seats also adjustable upwards, downwards, forward and and back, and for tilt.

The handlebars can be also adjusted up and down and have elbow rests for a ‘racing’ position. Also on the handlebars are the pulse sensors which feed your heart rate to the display, which also shows Time, Distance, Speed and Calories, plus a Scan mode, alternating between the different readouts. The pedal cranks are the 3 piece type. The latest model now has the ability to pedal in both directions and there is an Emergency Stop lever, for safety. The pedals are fitted with adjustable straps.

  • Max User weight: 125kg
  • Flywheel: 15Kg
  • Console Display: Time, Speed, Distance, Pulse, Calories, and Scan
  • Water bottle holder
  • 2-way Chain Drive
  • Dimensions: 112 x 48 x 105 cm;
  • Weight:  35 Kg

To buy the XS Sports Aerobic Indoor Training Exercise Bike, click the button below.

The price of the RS4000 depends (at the time of writing) on the colour of the trim! All the machines are basically black for there are flashes of colour at various places.

Quite why there is such a difference in price for such a minimal difference, is a bit of a mystery.

Colours available are White, Blue and Red, but if you really wanted Dayglo Green, you can, but under a different name – the the RevXtreme Indoor Aerobic Exercise Bike.

As far as the bike itself goes, the main advantage over the XS Sports machine described above is that you get a 22Kg flywheel, 1.5x the weight of the latter.

The extra flywheel weight accounts for most (but not all) of the overall heavier weight, at 47Kg.

Otherwise, like the XS Sports, it has a trip computer with the same functions + Odometer, variable resistance levels and fully adjustable seat and handlebars.

  • Flywheel: Perimeter weighted, 22Kg
  • Multi-functional trip computer:
    • Trip computer scan – rotates between all readout modes.
    • Speed – indicates current speed.
    • Distance – indicates current distance travelled in the session.
    • Odometer – indicates the total distance travelled.
    • Time – indicates current session time.
    • Calories – indicates calories burned in the session.
  • Ergonomic, non-slip & durable handlebars
  • Fully adjustable handlebar & seat + variable resistance levels
  • Transport wheels, anti-slip pedals & water bottle + comprehensive warranty included
  • Dimensions: 104 x 107 x 54 cm ; 47 Kg
  • Boxed Weight: 52 Kg

To buy the We R Sports RS4000 Indoor Exercise Bike, click the button below.

Spin Bikes between £250 - £500

The JTX Cyclo 6 is an indoor exercise bike for serious home use or spin classes but at a home gym price point.

When you get higher up the price range, you’ll find that, on paper, the statistics don’t necessarily seem to offer a great deal more in terms of features, but the emphasis is on the overall solidity and quality of the machine.

For the Cyclo 6, the flywheel is the same at that of the We R Sports RS4000 above – at 22Kg, though the Cycle 6 is Belt-Driven for smoothness and quietness. The resistance is increased smoothly by turning a knob which increases pressure on a friction pad, enabling simulation of hill cycling.

The new larger console monitors speed, time, calories, pulse and distance. The latter, both session distance and odometer which allows you to track your distance over multiple workouts, until the computer is reset.

However, the Cyclo 6’s heavy duty cast steel frame is another 12 Kg heavier. The maximum user weight is 160kg. It’s also longer – at 131cm overall, wider – 65cm. This combination makes it extremely stable, even for the most high intensity sessions or cycling standing up at full pelt. The pedals have toe-clips to ensure your feet won’t slip. The Quadri-Set adjustment, refers to the easy-to-use up/down and forward/back adjustment for both racing-style saddle and handlebars. The possible adjustments are as follows:

  • Seat up/down – 20cm
  • Seat forward/back – 12.5cm
  • Handlebar up/down – 16cm
  • Handlebar forward/back – 6cm

If you’re wondering whether the Cyclo 6 would be suitable for someone of your height, it may help to know that the seat height adjustment translates to distance from the floor of between 90cm – 110cm, and a distance to the pedals of 60cm – 80cm.

The pulse monitor is situated on the cross bar between the handlebar arms.
Other features include a 3-piece crank, an Emergency Stop function, transport wheels at the front and a free water bottle.

To back up the quality, JTX offer a 2-year in-home warranty with all parts and labour included, on top of a lifetime warranty on the frame.

  • Max User weight: 160kg
  • Flywheel: 22Kg
  • Belt drive for quieter operation
  • Pulse sensors
  • Dimensions: 112 x 120 x 64 cm
  • Weight: 64Kg
  • LCD Display: Time, Speed, Odometer, Distance, Pulse, Calories
  • Emergency Stop feature
  • 2 year in home repair warranty (includes all parts and labour)

To buy the JTX Cyclo 6: Gym Spec Aerobic Training Bike, click the button below

The next step up in the price range will get you the Cyclo 6’s brother, the Cyclo Studio. This is listed as a ‘Fully Commercial Specification’ indoor cycle.
As you would expect; it includes largely similar features with  a few additions.

The frame is extra-large 2”x 5″ Heavy-Duty Stainless Steel and JTX Fitness offer a 3 year in-home repair warranty, plus lifetime frame warranty.
The top down brake/resistance mechanism has a leather pad for increased durability.

An upgrade option on the Cyclo 6, the Cyclo Studio features, as standard, the JTX Dual Pedal System giving you the option of SPD cleats, flat pedals or toe clips at any time for complete training flexibility.

The flywheel is aa large, balanced, perimeter-weighted MAX TRACTION™ 20Kg flywheel (though, interestingly, this is actually a little lighter than the Cyclo 6). The dimensions are also a little smaller: 117cm(l) x 50cm(w) x 123cm(h).

The Cycling computer displays Watts and Cadence in addition to the usual Speed, Time, Distance and Pulse data. The handlebars include two water bottle holders and free water bottles.

To buy the JTX Cyclo Studio, click the button below

Life Fitness is a brand synonymous with machines in commercial gyms – and hence is of the highest quality, designed for heavy use from a wide variety of people of all shapes and sizes and you can now get this level of quality  for your own home gym.

This model is referred to as the HOME Edition; Lifecycle say that this consumer version is identical in build quality and performance to the Commercial Edition but comes with a separate safety lock and revised instructions.

For quiet use the GX uses a multi-ribbed belt drive. For comfort, it features and ergonomically designed handlebars and seat which have a wide range of adjustment for users of all shapes and sizes.

The seat has a cut-out providing air flow. There is an option of a wide seat available. The dual water bottle holders can also be used as digital device holders. The pedals are dual-sided SPD pedals.

It features a backlit console to track your workout. There is also an optional touch screen computer displaying Speed, Distance, Cadence, Calories, Heart Rate and Resistance level.

  • Robotically welded steel frame
  • Dimensions (LxWxH): 139 x 59 x 101 cm (54.6 in x 23 in x 39.5 in)
  • Product weight: 51kg (111 lbs)
  • Optional computer displays: Time, Distance, Resistance and Heart rate
  • Multi-ribbed belt drive

To buy the Life Fitness Lifecycle GX Exercise Bike with LCD console – HOME Edition, click the button below

Conclusion

Buying a spin bike is like buying other exercise bikes – there are bound to be differences as you go up the price scale.

But, whereas that usually translates to more gadgets, this is not the case here where the most expensive machines are just belt very solidly. 

And that’s the thing about spinning bikes – their main job is to give you a really good workout but, whatever your budget, you’ll find something here that does just that.

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