The difference between Spin Bike, Recumbent Bike and Upright Bike 3

As you get set to begin your cycling workout program, one question you may find yourself asking is upright bike vs. Spin bike vs recumbent bike Which one should you go for?

Below are the main differences of the three bikes.


These exercise bikes are commonly referred to as Stationary bikes. This name goes for recumbent, spin and upright bikes.

Bikes generally place less stress on the joints than some other cardio equipment options and are relatively comfortable once you become accustomed to sitting in the saddle, or seat, for an extended period of time. These bikes, in particular, are an excellent option for those with low back pain as the bike provides added support for the back. They are also good for those who are new to cycling.

Recumbent Bike

Recumbent bikes are easier on the lower back (lumbar spine) due to the way that you sit in the bike. While an upright bike has you hunched over the handlebars, a recumbent bike encourages better spinal posture.

Recumbent bikes are gentle on all your joints. Your lower back is supported by the bucket seat and your knees and ankles are protected from potential injurious impact.

The fact that the seat is larger on a recumbent bike tends to be one of the most enticing features. An upright bike generally has a smaller seat and can be uncomfortable for many riders.

Recumbent bikes are generally safer because you cannot stand up on the pedals. This eliminates many of the injuries that occur when using an upright bike.

A recumbent bike is a good choice for most people with neurological conditions since the bike provides a workout for individuals of all ability levels. It is safe and provides a low impact total body workout.

Due to the low impact the recumbent bike reduces the risk of pain and can build strength. If your back and hips are affected by rheumatoid arthritis, a recumbent bike may be easier to use due to the reclining position with your weight spread over your back and buttocks.

Upright Bike

An upright bike gives you a more consistent workout when relating to outdoor riding, since the upright places the rider in a similar body position.

Upright bikes also ensure you’re working the same muscles that are using with outdoor riding, which is more of a whole body exercise. Where as a recumbent mostly requires use of your glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves and tibilais anterior muscles.

The upright bike works the abdominal muscles since you are keeping the body upright and supporting your workout. Since you are in a reclined position on a recumbent bike there is little to no use of the abdominal muscles.

There is also more of an upper body arm workout since you are engaging the biceps, triceps, and shoulders in the upright position.

Upright bikes have a smaller footprint, therefore take up less space in your home or gym.

Upright bikes are also cheaper compared to spin bikes and recumbent bikes.

Spinning Bikes


If you are looking for a bike that does replicate a road bike as much as possible then spinning bike is the bike for you. The main difference between spinning and upright bikes is that the former allows the users to train in various positions and maximize fat-blasting. Indeed, contrary to regular stationary bikes, users will easily be able to stand up and pedal on spin bikes. Standing up engages your whole body while drawing every single muscle group into the workout. This also adds quite a bit of variety to your training, which can be motivating for users who tend to get bored easily.

Also, spinning bikes come with display consoles and all of them normally sport reinforced frames that don’t budge, no matter how vigorously you cycle. They also tend to accommodate heavier weight capacities than their upright counterparts. These types of machines are more suited to interval and strength training, which can bring a drastic boost to your stamina.

The other difference between spin and other stationary bikes lies in the flywheel mechanism. Spin machines traditionally sport much heavier flywheels, which once again demand greater effort and burn more calories. In fact, the heavier the flywheel the better, which is why the most advanced models sport flywheels weighing up to 20kg.

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Next we will tackle the air bike and elliptical cross trainers.…..

3 Comments

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  3. I loved your blog.Really looking forward to read more. Will read on…

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