Fitness and health are two essential things, especially for older adults. One way to achieve these is by doing regular exercise. However, seniors tend to be limited physically, which can hinder them from working out as most young people do.
Fortunately, there is one great solution to this: stationary bikes. Stationary bikes allow users to exercise in the comfort of their home, at their own pace, and as hard as is comfortably possible. However, finding a suitable stationary bike requires a little research.
In this article, I have included a few highly recommended products that could be appropriate for you as well. So, what are you waiting for? Keep reading to know more about the benefits of exercise and other tips for choosing the best stationary bike for seniors!
Best Stationary Bike For Seniors
Why Seniors Need Exercise
It is not a secret that exercise has tons of benefits for our health and well-being. However, it is especially necessary and beneficial for seniors. Studies have shown that regular exercise during late adulthood can help reduce stress, improve heart health, and prolong life.
More benefits of exercise for seniors are listed below:
1. Weight Loss
As people get older, we tend to stop moving due to the various aches and pains that we experience. Our metabolism also slows down This can lead to a myriad of problems that can include being overweight or obese.
Regular exercise, along with a healthy diet can reduce weight gain and increase caloric burn, which in turn improves the quality of life.
To get started on your weight loss journey, please check out this video:
2. Cardiovascular Health And Endurance
When we exercise, the heart gets pumping, and blood circulation is improved. This means that more fresh oxygen is delivered to your cells, helping them function more efficiently. This also strengthens your heart muscles, reducing the risk of heart problems.
3. Improved Mobility
Once your weight is reduced, and your cardiovascular capacity is improved, you can then move freely and exercise more effectively. When you are lighter, there is less stress on the hips and knees.
Exercise also helps stretch and move your muscles and joints, which increases circulation for better nourishment. Thanks to this, you will eventually feel less pain and walking, running, or moving around will be much more comfortable.
Building muscle strength will also improve and maintain balance and coordination.
4. Mood Lift and Pain Relief
Exercise encourages the release of happy hormones like endorphins that will enhance one’s mood and act as a natural pain reliever. This can also reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety in the elderly.
5. Enhanced Sense of Purpose
The amount of things you cannot do when you grow older can be frustrating. Thankfully, exercise has been proven to help seniors rediscover their sense of belonging and usefulness in the community.
This has various mental and physical benefits aside from serving as inspiration for other people around them.
Why A Recumbent Bike is The Best Stationary Bike for Seniors
There are two major types of stationary bikes: recumbent and upright. Both of these offer the benefits of getting your daily exercise without having to leave the comfort of your home.
However, there are a few fundamental differences that make recumbent bikes more appropriate for seniors.
- 1Recumbent bikes are more gentle on the joints, including the lumbar spine or lower back. Unlike in an upright bike where the user is hunched over the handlebars, recumbent bikes encourage a better, safer, and more comfortable spinal posture. They also provide sufficient support on the knees, ankles, and back to reduce the risk of injuries.
- 2Upright bikes have smaller seats that can be uncomfortable or painful with prolonged use. Recumbent bikes, on the other hand, offer more comfort because of the larger seat and backrest.
- 3Since upright bikes let the user stand up on the pedals, injuries are more likely to occur, and recumbent bikes are generally considered safer.
- 4Recumbent bikes are more advisable for people with neurological conditions because these machines can provide a low impact total body workout for people of any level of ability.
- 5The use of a recumbent bike helps build strength and reduces pain from conditions like rheumatoid arthritis by allowing the body to recline. This reclining position distributes the weight effectively on the back, hips, and buttocks.
- 6To ride an upright exercise bike, you have to stand on one pedal and swing the other leg over. This can be too dangerous and physically challenging especially for seniors. Recumbent bikes are lower to the ground, and you simply have to sit down and position your legs to use it. The reclining position is more natural and comfortable, reducing muscle fatigue and soreness. This also reduces the risk of falling off and injuries.
- 7Recumbent bike seats are also easier to adjust. You just have to pull or turn a knob or handle to adjust your seat position unlike in an upright bike when you have to dismount and pull out pins, adjust the seat, and reposition.
Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Stationary Bike for Seniors
Choose a model with large, contoured, and nicely padded seats. It should also encourage good posture to avoid pain and discomfort.
An excellent stationary bike should be easy and quick to assemble. Older people might not have someone to help them assemble it. Make sure that there are only a few parts, an easy-to-follow manual or instruction guide, and minimal tools are required.
A good bike should not take up much space and can be easily stored and transported. Find one that is easy to move around and has a small footprint especially if you have limited space at home.
4. Adjustable Resistance
Look for a bike with adjustable resistance for versatility and a variety of workout levels.
5. Other Features
Depending on your needs and preferences, some models offer additional features like an LCD screen, heart rate monitor, media connector, pre-programmed workouts, or water bottle holders.
As with any purchase, consider the product price. Pay only the essential features for which you are willing to pay. You can find bikes in a wide range of prices, but a more expensive purchase does not necessarily mean that a machine will be more useful for you.
5 Best Stationary Bike For Seniors Review
1. Marcy ME 709 Recumbent Exercise Bike
If you are looking for an affordable recumbent bike for seniors, the Marcy ME 709 is a simple yet efficient choice. It gives desirable performance and results without breaking the bank. It is not poor with regards to its features, either.
The Marcy ME 709 features a large display console, perfect for older people who are visually challenged. The LCD screen acts as an odometer and displays the distance, time, speed, and calories burned in a large font for better readability.
You can quickly adjust between eight resistance levels through simple tension knobs.
Moreover, it has counterbalance pedals that offer a sufficient amount of resistance without sacrificing comfort. The adjustable straps on the pedals also help secure the feet on, preventing slips that can hurt or injure the user.
A limited working or storage space will not be a problem either because this model is compact and comes with transport wheels which make it easy to move around.
- Great value for the price
- Looks good
- Easy to get on and off
- Assembly is a breeze
- 300-pound weight limit
- Easy to move around
- No high tension settings
- Not programmable
- Inaccurate calorie counter does not take into account the resistance
- Could use more padding
2. Exerpeutic 900XL Recumbent Bike
The Exerpeutic 900XL Recumbent bike is another budget-friendly option. It features eight magnetic tension resistance levels to accommodate users of all skill levels.
This model also comes with a large, readable LCD display that indicates speed, time, calories burned, heart rate, and distance to help you track and monitor your progress. Hand pulse sensors are located on the hand rests.
It has an adjustable seat and a large backrest for optimum support and comfort. Transport wheels on the front assist in easily relocating the bike around the house.
Weighing only about 63 pounds and with dimensions of 22 x 34 x 54 inches, this model can handle up to 300 pounds of user weight. Finally, it comes with a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty.
- Adjustable resistance
- Battery-powered screen
- Power source and screen is not required for riding
- Keeps track of calorie burn, heart rate, and time
- Bolts may come loose and pose a danger to the user
- May heat up when used on high resistance for a prolonged period of time
- Heart rate monitor and calorie counter are not accurate
- Inadequately padded seat
- The seat may wobble
- Makes noise when used with high resistance
3. Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike
The Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike is the most premium model in this list. It is more expensive than most stationary bikes but is one of the hardest models to beat regarding technology and performance.
This model features Bluetooth connectivity, a free RideSocial app, options for syncing with the Schwinn Trainer App to track your fitness goals and progress, 29 pre-set programs, and a maximum of 12 profiles, 4 of which are customizable.
You can choose between 25 levels of resistance and workout intensity options; much more than other models can offer. This allows for small increments of adjustment to accommodate for seniors.
The adjustable, ventilated, the padded and contoured seat provides another level of comfort and support.
Other cool features include the DualTrack LCD, in-console speakers, media shelf, mp3 input, USB charging, and a fan.
- Operates quietly
- Keeps track of your progress
- Comfortable padded seat
- Media cable and built-in speakers
- Configurable display
- Adjustable seat and resistance
- Easy to put together
- Arrives almost completely assembled
- The AC cord is short and sticks out
- Does not come with a complete user manual
- The front edge of the seat can press on the thighs and cut circulation
4. Nautilus R614 Recumbent Bike
The Nautilus R614 is a slightly cheaper alternative for the Schwinn 270. It allows users to customize and set individual fitness goals.
It features 22 programs for a quick start, fitness tests, heart rate control and user profiles. You can choose from 20 levels of resistance for a comfortable or challenging workout, whichever one you prefer.
The Dual Track LCD can show up to 13 workout details including heart rate, distance, time, speed, and calories burned.
Although it is small and compact in size, it can handle a maximum user weight of 300 pounds, thanks to the sturdy and well-constructed frame. An mp3 input port and in-console speakers also keep you entertained while pedaling.
The grip heart rate monitor is also useful in making sure that the heart rate does not get too high especially for seniors with heart conditions.
- Good quality and well-built
- Noiseless and smooth operation
- Magnetic resistance
- No vibrations on the knees
- Built-in speakers and book or iPad holder
- 22 programs
- Accurate adjustable resistance settings
- Easy to use control panel
- The built-in speakers are loud, but the sound is not of good quality
- Seat can cause discomfort due to lack of back support
- Built-in fan is too weak
5. Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike
Last but not the least, I personally think that the Exerpeutic 400XL offers the best value for your money. It does not cost too much but is rich in amazing features.
What I love about this bike is that it is compact and foldable, perfect for small apartments that do not have much of a space. You can easily unfold it for exercising then fold it up again for transport or storage.
The precision-balanced flywheel offers 8 levels of adjustable magnetic resistance while the double drive transmission system ensures quiet operation.
You can track your time, speed, heart rate, calories, and distance covered on an easily readable LCD display screen.
The large backrest and seat cushion also make exercising more comfortable and easy on the hips and back. Despite its compact stature, this model can handle up to 300 pounds of user weight.
- Easy to assemble and use
- Sturdy and stable
- Operates very quietly
- Adjustable and comfortable seat
- Monitor displays pedal settings, calories burned, speed, and distance
- Small and compact
- Foldable and easy to store
- Good, accurate resistance levels
- The monitors may rub on the knees and calves
- Uncomfortable to use for very tall or very large people
In summary, I think that the Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent bike wins as the best stationary bike for seniors. It falls under the cheap category but can compete with more expensive models in terms of performance and features.
Among the best features of the Exerpeutic 400XL is that it is easy to assemble, compact, and foldable. It also operates quietly, has an 8-level adjustable tension system and an easy-to-read LCD display, and comfortable seat and backrest.
Whether you are buying for yourself or a loved one, hopefully, this article can help you make a wise choice! For more buyer guides and reviews of other sports and fitness needs, check out this link!