In a world where the emphasis is on improved fitness and balanced health, you must have fitness goals. Unfortunately, fast-paced living makes it challenging to commit to proper fitness. Since you can’t always spend time in the gym, you can bring the gym to your house in the best exercise bike under 500.
Exercise bikes are excellent equipment for achieving and improving your fitness goals. Luckily, you don’t need more than an hour on the machine to stay fit. If you have been looking to buy one, our review of the best exercise bike is for you.
Read on to look for the top products in the market that you can buy without breaking the bank. You can read our buying guide also for tips to buy or maintain the one you have.
Schwinn Recumbent Bike Series
High speed and high inertia drive system
YOSUDA Indoor Cycling Bike Stationary
Safe To Use
Marcy Club Revolution Bike Cycle
Durable Steel Construction
L NOW Indoor Exercise Bike
Heavy-duty steel frame
FitDesk Standing Adjustable Desk Bike
Nautilus Upright Bike Series
29 unique training programs
PYHIGH Indoor Cycling Bike
SGS Certificated bike
Sunny Health & Fitness Bike
350lb high weight capacity
Exercise Bike Recumbent Spin Cycling Bike
Adjustable height grips plus benches
SYRINX Indoor Cycling Bike-Belt Drive
Suitable for 4.9-6.5ft users
Top 10 Best Exercise Bike Under 500 Dollar Review in 2020
Schwinn Recumbent Bike
The Schwinn Recumbent Bike Series comes with user-friendly features and is comfortable to ride on for optimal value.
Heavy-duty recumbent bike
The exercise bike is easy to use, eases pressure on the back, and takes the load off your knees. Thanks to its recumbent features, the bike places you in a reclined and relaxed position. It is one of the best bikes for beginners, seniors, and people who have joint conditions.
The machine is quiet and allows you to watch TV when you work out. It is also adjustable; however, you need to unscrew it, move it to a new position, and re-screw it. Nonetheless, you can always customize the seat the way you want.
Plenty of smart features are a handful
The bike works for all resistance without thumps. Besides the LCDs, there are different programs that you can choose from, and you can also download and upload sessions that you desire. The Screens is a streamlined console that offers up to 22 workout programs, fitness metrics, and goal tracking.
YOSUDA Indoor Cycling Bike
The stationary indoor cycling bike by YOSUDA is a flywheel steel-framed exercise bike that guarantees stability during use.
Flexible and versatile design
The YOSUDA Indoor Cycling Bike design lets it simulate a real road bike, and its momentum keeps it in place when you ride. Although it has a max weight of 270lbs, you won’t have to worry so much about instability. The bike comes with heavy-duty aluminum alloy cape pedals. By implication, the pedals give more support, and your feet won’t slip during use.
Stable for indoor use
Sturdy wheels on the bottom of the bike allow you to move it with ease. All you need to do is tilt it and roll. As such, it eliminates muscle strain associated with heavy lifting. A belt-driven system on the bike also provides a quieter and smoother ride than bikes with chain transports. As a result, you can utilize it indoors without disturbing the house occupants.
Marcy Club Revolution Bike
Make light work of your cardio exercise with the Marcy Club Revolution Bike Cycle Trainer for Cardio Exercise. The bike lets you enjoy an intense cardio workout in a stationary position.
Quality backed by reinforcement
The bike trainer comes with fully adjustable seats and handlebars that are sure to put you in the best place to maximize your posture and efforts. It also has a road-bike style saddle, and the handlebars are padded with foam for excellent ergonomics.
Plus, you can adjust it either horizontally or vertically for customized use. The frames on the bike are of durable steel. Hence, it won’t corrode or rust quickly. Power-coated finish and sturdy welding point also guarantee continuous use without falling apart.
Durably made for safe usage
The bike comes with a quick-stop mechanism that lets you stop the wheels quickly, even in motion. Its reliable pulley system also supports 300lbs regardless of the posture. Transportation from one place to another is quick and convenient, thanks to its wheels.
L NOW Indoor Exercise Bike
The L NOW Indoor Exercise Bike Indoor Cycling Stationary Bike is another excellent belt-driven cycling bike for a cardio workout.
Optimal customization for ultimate user compatibility
The workout machine is powered by a belt drive system that gives it a quiet performance. As a result, it qualifies as one of the best indoor cycling bikes.
It also comes with an adjustable handlebar so that you can customize your ride for comfort. Plus, transport wheels allow you to move it about and store easily. There is also a metal bottle holder and a tablet holder so that you can keep water and devices near for a fun session.
Sturdy parts guarantee a durable use
The device is equipped with a single high-quality resistance pad for smooth operations. It also comes with tough pedals that ensures safe and comfortable use. An aluminum alloy pedal design and the adjustable cage will provide more support and prevent feet slip during use.
It also combines an electroplated bi-directional flywheel, a belt reel, and a leather transmission belt that smoothen and muffle your workout. Not just this, it ensures abrasion-resistant and anti-rust performance.
FitDesk Standing Adjustable Desk Bike
The FitDesk Standing Adjustable Desk Bike is one of the most functional and versatile bikes you will ever find thanks to its table surface. As such, you can use it in the home or office.
Office use design
A non-slip table surface on the bike is a handy place to place your laptop and tablets. The surface is so large that you won’t have to bother about slip off and falls. Plus, it has a soft-grip top; hence, things won’t fall off easily.
It also comes with a tablet and cell phone holder with storage panels to store earphones and small accessories. This way, you can go about your daily work and exercise.
Adjustable and durable design for extended comfort
The bike seat has a backrest and an extender that can be adjusted for semi-recumbent use. An adjustable armrest is also one of the product’s exciting features as contoured massage rollers provide comfort and support for the forearm. Eight calibrated magnetic resistance settings offer an even and smooth pedal control, and an easy-to-read meter tracks performance.
Nautilus Upright Bike
The Nautilus Upright Bike Series features seamless digital connectivity and impressive physical features for a smooth ride.
Smooth and seamless connection
With enhanced Bluetooth settings, you can monitor and track your progress with app-based tools built for that purpose. The app lets you explore the World and digitally involve yourself in virtual and online activities, even during training.
A comprehensive option of 29 training programs allows you to choose from a custom preset programs to track your cardio health or weight loss. Not just this, you can customize each program to suit your specific goals.
A few downturns but still kicking it
The bike’s resistance is different from the one on a 40b flywheel bike with a felt brake pad. As a result, it will take getting used to. Nonetheless, it puts up an excellent performance. You should also note that it gives off a considerable amount of vibrations and noise that is negligible. If anything, you will appreciate the bike for its maximum seat height.
PYHIGH Indoor Cycling Bike
Special features on the PYHIGH Indoor Cycling Bike Belt Drive Stationary Bicycle Exercise Bikes makes it safe for indoor use. The bike is SGS certified as safe for use for low impact rides.
High-intensity bearing bike
The PYHIGH Indoor Bikes comes with a 35lbs bi-directional flywheel and a unique design screw that eliminates wobble for convenient use. It also features PK anti-losing grade belt, high-intensity belts, and reinforced pedals for easy movement. Plus, an extended seat post accommodates up to 280lbs with falling apart.
As with most high-quality bikes, the product comes with an LCD monitor that is handy for tracking your performance while cycling. The handlebar is also adjustable, and it has a non-slip design. Combine with its particular screw system; it won’t wobble during use.
Adjustable foot and body protection
The pedals on the bike are made of aluminum alloy and are adjustable for adequate foot support. Hence, this eliminates slip offs and falls. You can also change the pedals and substitute it for spin shoes. Since it has a transmission belt and TPI bearings, it is heavy and sturdy for lasting use.
Sunny Health & Fitness Bike
Keep your fitness on track with the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Recumbent Bike Exercise Bike. The recumbent bike is easy to adjust for various users of different sizes and is easy to put together and use.
Pulse sensors and adjustable resistance
The machine features an 8-level resistance that you can customize and adjust with a tension knob.
With a twist, you can decrease and increase the resistance to change the bike’s intensity to fit your workout goals. Pulse sensors also let you monitor and keep up with your heart rate and targets. Since it is a recumbent bike, a step-through design is safer and puts minimal strain on the legs and bike. Hence, whether you are sitting out or in, the bike embodies all-round comfortability.
Built for different people for multiple uses
The product also doubles as an arm exerciser. This feature is thanks to its design that lets the leg and arm exerciser move separately. Besides, the bike seat comes with an easy-to-use seat adjuster that enables you to adjust the machine conveniently from a sitting position.
FWD Exercise Bike
The Exercise Bike Recumbent Spin Cycling Bike by FWD Functions as an indoor cycling stationary workout bike. It is backed with some of the most impressive features that allow you to monitor your health in real-time.
Rubber sponge for comfortable cycling
The workout bike has a rubber sponge grip that is comfortable on the hand, and as a result, allows lengthy ride time without getting tired. Cage pedals also provide more pedaling support by preventing foot slippage during use.
Besides, it has the utmost weight capacity of 220 pounds. The product has a resistance system that is adjustable thanks to a fitted resistance knob. By implication, you can custom your training session to different levels of difficulties. Two rollers located in front of the machine also lets you move it about with ease.
Real-time update of activities
The 22lbs flywheel bike is equipped with an LCD that provides real-time information on speed, distance, calories, and odometer. Hence, you can always check your status during a workout session to match your targets. Its flywheel system simulates the track and makes it possible to enjoy outdoor riding experience from anywhere.
SYRINX Indoor Exercise Bike
The SYRINX Indoor Cycling Bike-Belt Drive Indoor Exercise Bike is another excellent home and gym cardio workout product. The 35lbs belt-driven flywheel bike gives enough momentum to challenge your exercise routine.
Your foot won’t slip
The SYRINX stationary bike will fit different users between 4.9ft-6.5ft. However, its anti-skid pedal cage is made from an aluminum alloy that will keep your feet from slipping. Not just this, it provides cycling support for constant use.
Its bi-directional flywheel system provides momentum and stability and an adjustable felt pad for different resistance levels. The belt drive system also makes your ride more comfortable and quiet. Plus, the brake pads are made of pure wool felt; hence, it gives low whistles sound. It is also durable; therefore, there will be little need for change.
Multi-functional handlebar and LCD monitor
The product comes with a multi-grip adjustable, durable, and ultra-tough vinyl non-slip handlebar. Put all of these together, and you have a handlebar that you can adjust up and down conveniently. An LCD monitor also tracks your performance, and there is a counter where you can place your mobile devices. An aluminum alloy bottle holder is a handy feature for keeping water close by during your session.
How to Select the Exercise Bike under $500
The Bike Design
There are several bike designs with specific advantages and differences. Three of the commonest ones are:
Recumbent bikes are easy to use and are the most relaxing of the three. This is because it places you in a reclined position, easing pressure on the knees and joints. The bike is also well padded at contact points and is best for seniors or people with joint conditions.
Bikes in this category are versatile for a high-intensity workout. The design is such that it places the handlebars and the seats on the same level, and you would need to stand or lean towards it during use. As a result, it involves more muscle work and burns calories faster. The bike seats are also not very comfortable.
Upright bikes are the most common and are best for a cardiovascular workout. Although it is more comfortable than spinning bikes, they are not as relaxing to use as the recumbent bikes. The seat on the bike is placed below and away from the handlebar, and the seat is well-padded. Therefore, you can use it for a lengthy session without getting tired quickly.
Frame and Support
Bikes made of stainless steel are the most durable of all types. The most popular materials are steel and aluminum. However, steel is more durable, while aluminum is lighter. Hence, if you are passionate about wanting your workout bike to last, we recommend sturdy steel frames.
If you do not have much area around, you can shop for a bike with foldable features. The only disadvantage is that foldable bikes don’t last as long as the non-folding bike since the latter has more stability.
Resistance Level and Flywheel
The flywheel feature is one that is common to all exercise bikes regardless of the design. Together with the resistance, the flywheel makes it harder to pedal the bike for more intensity. Hence, efficient flywheel means more efficient resistance and higher workout intensity. Magnetic resistance creates friction by using magnets for greater consistency.
Since it uses a magnet, it doesn’t touch the flywheel and is quieter. However, it is more expensive. In contrast, direct-contact resistance connects the flywheel for a consistent and more accurate resistance. However, it wears the brake pad faster and can be noisy.
The height of the bike is another factor that determines how comfortable your ride will be. Inappropriate height selection will either leave you cramped and short or make it harder to reach the handlebars. Hence, it is essential to buy a bike that will conveniently fit your height. Alternatively, you can look for bikes with adjustable height features. This way, you can customize the height to fit you.
Bikes differ in controls and programming. Some of the most popular control features are a large LCD screen that tracks your calories burned, heart rate, distance, etc. Some models take it up a notch and allow connectivity to Bluetooth or a web database for a real-time update.
There is no yardstick for measuring how much controls a workout bike should have. However, it would help if the product comes with a considerable amount of smart options and digital controls.
Features like phone holder, water bottle, inbuilt speakers, cooling fans, and USB charging ports make a workout bike more desirable and efficient. If you are forced to select between a close rival, choose the product with more extra features as it could be all the difference that you need. Above all, make sure the product suits your fitness need and riding goals.
How Do Exercise Bikes Work?
An exercise bike, especially the stationary ones, are designed to look like your regular bicycle, except that there are no wheels. First, the bikes have pedals that are attached to a weighted flywheel. There are also knobs attached to the handlebar that lets you adjust the resistance levels. The pedals, in most cases, are covered in cages to protect the foot from slipping.
For models where the handlebars are connected to the pedal, you can exercise the lower upper and lower bodies. If it is not, then the flywheel lets you apply resistance to the pedal. When this happens, it increases the intensity of your workout. Resistance mechanism can be made of friction, magnets, and fans.
The magnetic resistance mechanism makes use of electricity to generate resistance. It does this by allowing current pass through to force a magnetic force to close the flywheel. Belt-driven resistance models have a chain or belt and a weighted flywheel attached to either side’s pedals. By implication, when you pedal the bike, it transfers motion from the chain or belt to the flywheel to enjoy your routine.
Some workout bike models come with preprogrammed settings that automatically adjust the resistance to match your demand.
Resistance System of Exercise Bikes Under 500
Like we have mentioned, a bike’s resistance lets you adjust the tension of the pedal. As a result, it a sole factor that determines whether your workout will be challenging or easy. While some bikes come with a manual and adjustable tension control, others feature digitally adjustable tension. That is, manual adjustment lets you change the resistance by turning a knob while you only need to press a digital adjustment button. However, all mechanism serves the same purpose.
Bikes in this category usually come with two types of resistance. They include:
This type is more advanced, unlike the other type. It involves the use of two magnets on either side of the flywheel to create resistance. When the pedal resistance increases, ether magnets move close to the flywheel to create tension and make it harder to pedal.
Conversely, the magnets move away from the flywheel when you decrease the resistance. For this type of resistance, it can either be manual or digitally adjusted. For the manual resistance, the magnet is controlled by a tension knob through cables. However, an electronic signal controls it for digital resistance.
Strap or Belt-Driven Resistance
This type of resistance is more peculiar to older bikes. The resistance system works thanks to a belt that runs through the brakes. When you turn the tension knob, the brake grabs on the belt to increase pedal tension. If you turn it reverse direction, the brakes detach itself from the belt so that you can turn the pedal quickly.
Maintenance Tips of Exercise Bike under 500
It is essential to wipe and clean your bike after every workout session. This procedure will prevent rust build-up and will extend the life of your machine. Plus, it prevents leaving sweat marks on your bike. However, be cautious not to spray directly on the bike frame.
If you must, spray on a piece of cloth and use it to wipe the bike clean gently. You can also use water and soap; however, avoid oil-based and abrasive cleaning products as it can strip the frame of paint. Clean the pulse sensors, handlebars, seats, and console. The cleaning procedure should take less than a minute.
General routine maintenance should be carried out weekly to check your bike’s performance. Check the excessive vibrations, loose assemblies, and other such features that can affect overall performance. We recommend checking the bottom bracket to know if the pedals and crank arms are flexible or firm.
A comprehensive monthly inspection is another aspect of care that you should pay close attention to. Your attention should be on the brake pads, lubrication, and resistance. When you notice a grinding noise or if the resistance starts to skip, lubricate the flywheel where it rubs against the brake pads and rotates it gently. You should also check the tightness of the screws, seals and bearings, and the belt.
Before all of these, we recommend checking the products’ manual for the manufacturer’s maintenance suggestion.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. Do exercise bikes help with weight loss and losing belly fat?
You gain weight and belly fat by taking in too much energy and giving little out. Other causes include stress, consumption of alcohol, sugar-rich foods, and lack of exercise. Exercise bikes are handy for pushing yourself to burn more calories so that you can lose belly fat and shed some weight. When you combine a lengthy session of an exercise bike with a heath diet routine, it will let you lose weight faster.
2. Should I buy an exercise bike or stick to walking for burning calories?
If it were that you could lose enough calories by walking, there would be no need for exercise bikes. As such, the machine is more effective for achieving your fitness goal compared to walking. If you want, you can combine the two. However, do not substitute an exercise bike for walking.
3. How long should I spend on an exercise bike?
The ultimate decider of how long you should exercise on any of these bikes is your fitness goal. For example, if you only desire cardiovascular health improvement, you can stick with a 30 minutes session and do this for five days a week. A session like this is sufficient to let you burn as many calories as possible. However, if the purpose is for weight loss, you can buff your exercise time to an hour or 90 minutes daily for five days weekly.
4. Are there exercise bikes for seniors?
Exercise bikes are for everyone, including seniors. Since everyone needs muscle stimulation, it won’t hurt to try out an exercise bike. However, you should stick to a recumbent bike. Recumbent bikes are the most comfortable of all the bike types and are easy to maneuver – a feature that is essential for a senior. They are also well-padded, and backrest eases tension on the back. Plus, they are easy to mount and get off and won’t strain the muscles.
5. Is riding a stationary bike bad for my knees?
Stationary bikes have low impact and won’t affect the knee health. Since the bike has a closed system, it keeps your feet close to the pedals and puts less stress on the joints.
The best exercise bike under 500 is an excellent way to stay engaged in cycling and improve your overall health performance. Not one, but ten products in our review give you enough options to choose from for flexible selection. Regardless of the design of the bike you want, we have covered different models of upright, recumbent, and spin bikes to make your purchase worth it.
However, we recommend the Schwinn Recumbent Bike Series as our top pick if we must choose for you. More than being a user-friendly bike, the product comes with enough adjustable settings and is customized with 22 preset workout programs for flexible selection. Plus, you can track your fitness goal, and it boasts of quiet operations.
This is not to tell that other products on our lists are not versatile. A few products can only rival all the products in this review in the market. So why not go ahead plus pick one that suits your fitness goal and matches your style.