Indoor Cycling bike or exercise bike, what's the difference?

You want to take Indoor Cycling classes and start looking for a bike. At first glance, there seem to be a lot of bikes available. When you take a closer look, you can see that there is some difference between the bikes. In addition to Indoor Cycling bikes, there are also exercise bikes. What’s the difference between these bikes? And more importantly, can you follow Indoor Cycling workouts on any kind of bike? 

Woman on Indoor Cycling bike

High or low intensity

To answer that last question directly: Indoor Cycling classes can really only be taken on Indoor Cycling bikes. This has to do with the intensity of the classes and the construction of the bikes. A workout on a Indoor Cycling bike is aimed at a complete workout. You go through a complete training session with standing and sitting exercises in 20 to 90 minutes. During a class, you focus on speed, power, and intensity. This is in contrast to the training you do on an exercise bike. An exercise bike is used for short warm-ups, daily use, and moderate exercise. The posture on an exercise bike is more comfortable than on a Indoor Cycling bike. This makes it very suitable to use during rehabilitation or when you are a novice athlete.

Technical specifications

An Indoor Cycling bike and exercise bike can be very similar in some cases. Still, there are big differences in technique. An Indoor Cycling bike is used for more intensive training. Because of the difference in the pedaling system, you will notice that an Indoor Cycling bike doesn’t allow you to really take a break or hold back. Because the pedals are connected to a heavy flywheel, you are always forced to keep pedaling. If you want to stop, use the emergency stop. An exercise bike, on the other hand, makes use of a so-called freewheel. This means that you can stop pedaling at any time while the flywheel keeps Indoor Cycling. Because of this, you usually train at a lower intensity.

Posture

When setting up the Indoor Cycling bike, you will notice that you have to get used to the posture, unless you have a cycle sports background. The handlebars are at the same height as the saddle, giving you a sporty posture. The complete opposite of the way you sit on an exercise bike. Upright is the focus here. So with an Indoor Cycling bike, you are challenged to cycle much faster than on an exercise bike. This difference in comfort is usually also found in the saddle. The saddle of an exercise bike is softer and thicker than the hard, pointed saddle of an Indoor Cycling bike.

Similarities

In the end, most people start exercising with the same goal: a healthier lifestyle. Whether you want to lose weight or improve your fitness, it’s all about feeling fit and healthy. You can work toward this goal with both an Indoor Cycling bike and an exercise bike. Both bikes are suitable to increase your lung capacity and improve your physical fitness. In addition, both ways help you strengthen your muscles, and your heart and blood vessels become stronger. So to make the right choice, it’s mainly about how you want to go about it. Do you want to follow workouts at a higher intensity and do you want to challenge yourself optimally during your training sessions? Then choose an Indoor Cycling bike. Do you prefer more relaxed cycling and don’t necessarily want to reach high speeds? Then the exercise bike is the best option for you! 

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