The Marcy ME-708 Upright Exercise Bike is perfect for the casual user who is trying to lose a few pounds or to recover from an injury. It provides 8 levels of resistance that can easily be adjusted using a knob that is located on the front frame where it is within easy reach.
The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike With Pulse can be folded for storage when not in use. It monitors the pulse and heartrate – two useful tools for fitness training. It is inexpensive. The seat isn’t the greatest, and it isn’t a perfect fit for everyone.
Exercising with Upright Bikes
Upright stationary bikes are more nearly like street bikes. They usually have a typical bicycle seat that sits above the pedals. They usually have a smaller footprint in your home or office floor plan as compared to a recumbent bike. As with most things, this is a bit of a trade-off because the recumbent bikes tend toward more comfortable seating. But don’t let that put you off using an upright bike, especially if you intend it to take the place of riding your street or racing bike during inclement weather. An upright bike offers the opportunity for a vigorous workout even when snow, ice, one hundred degree plus outdoor temperatures, or smog make outdoor exercise hazardous to health.
Characteristics of the Upright Bikes
Upright Bikes are characterized by a bicycle seat positioned over or slightly behind the pedals, in much the same way as a street or racing bike.
The handgrips or handlebars can have several different configurations including a standard set of bike handlebars that are simply there for balance, smart handlebars that measure pulse and heartbeat, handholds positioned on either side of an information console, and even moveable handlebars that provide an upper body workout.
The pedals can be configured in several different ways, but typically they are attached to the sides of a sprocket. The sprocket might turn a chain, a belt or be connected directly to a weighted wheel. The chain or belt might turn a larger wheel that can be adjusted for resistance, a weighted wheel, a wheel with electromagnetic resistance, or a large fan. It should be noted that in most cases, the pedals are not intended to bear the user’s weight. If they are not configured for stand-up pedaling, to do so could bend or break the pedals over time.
The seat is usually a bicycle seat. Within that description, however, there are several styles of bicycle seat that provide a range of comfort, just as there are on street or racing bikes. These could include a classic bike seat, a racing bike seat or even that crazy banana seat that was so popular in the seventies. Since most upright exercise bikes are intended for the user to sit on the seat and pedal, the seat comfort could be important for your exercise enjoyment.
Speed, resistance, distance, time, respiration, pulse, and heart rate are all information that is valuable to you as you exercise. They are used to measure the effectiveness of your exercise session and to help you set goals and plan your exercise time. Even if you primarily use your indoor exercise bike as a pleasant way to keep in shape when you can’t get to the out-of-doors, it is useful to your health regimen to be able to track these things.
Like the bikes themselves, the consoles come in a variety of styles and deliver varying amounts of information. They can range from the very simplest of devices, a speedometer and odometer that can tell you how fast you are pedaling and how many “miles” you have ridden, right on up to a beautiful digital display of your simulated terrain with information about your breathing, heart rate, pulse, distance traveled, resistance, and more. Many of the consoles include buttons for switching between planned workout sessions, saved user information, and incentive programs.
Extras, Entertainment, and Keeping Up a Routine
Like most exercise programs or machines, an upright bike is only effective for helping you with your goals if it is used. Toward that end, those little extras that might not seem like they would mean very much can make a difference. Many of the newer bike designs include a media shelf with a connector that can charge your cell phone, tablet or mp3 player, or even hold a magazine or small book. Some bikes have a water bottle holder attached to the frame. That might seem like a small thing, but if you are working hard, staying hydrated is important.
If you want to spend a little less on the upright bike, you can create most of these extras using your cell phone or tablet, computer or television. You can have your items close at hand by placing a small table or a chair near the exercise bike. Depending upon the bicycle, the programs and the sensors involved, sometimes it is less expensive to spend a little more on the bike and have all the goodies built in. If you already have a lot of the equipment or if you would prefer to build up your accessories over time, you might prefer to forego the extras, focus on having a good quality bike, and buy the other items separately.
The good news is that there are so many different kinds of bikes and bike companies that there are plenty of choices available to you.
As a buyer, you hope that the product you are purchasing is a good one and that it will last a long time. However, even the best manufacturers can sometimes make a defective product. If you have bad luck with a purchase, you really want a good warranty for the item you are buying. Read the information about the specific warranty for each product carefully.
Typical warranties for an upright bike usually include a one or two year warranty for the frame, six months to a year for digital components. Most will include labor, but a few companies only guarantee parts; labor on repairs is extra.
There is a bike “out there” for you
Stationary bikes come in a lot of different types and levels. With so many from which to choose, you are bound to be able to find the stationary bicycle that will suit your needs, exercise style, and budget. You can use your bicycle for meditation in motion machine, or sign up for one of those televised or online computer groups that allow you to “travel” across a region with your pedal pals. You can read a book or spice up your exercise by pedaling away from marauding dinosaurs or zombies. The important thing is finding the right bike and the right exercise incentive for you.
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