What’s your preferred workout equipment? Rower, treadmill or stationary bike. If stationary bike is your answer, are they recumbent or upright bikes? What’s the difference between both?
To keep it short and simple the main difference between the two is the position of the rider. Despite your response, stationary bikes are effective and safe way to workout. American College of Sports Medicine says that these bikes gives you a choice to perform low impact cardiovascular activity.
Both type of bikes put less stress on joints as compared to few other cardio equipment and are comparatively more comfortable as soon as you become used to sitting on seat or saddle, for long hours. In particular recumbent bikes are best for people with pain in lower back because these bike provides additional support for back. They are also very good for beginners. In a nutshell, exercise recumbent bikes are best for people with all levels who like to perform cardiovascular workout.
So if you are now ready to give a try, but not sure which type will suit you, keep reading to know the difference of benefits you get from either sides.
Benefits Of Recumbent Bikes
- These are pretty easier on lumbar spine or lower back because of the way that you sit in bike. In contrast upright bike need you to be hunched on handlebars. Therefore recumbent bikes encourage better posture for spine.
- Recumbent bikes are gentler on joints. Lower back is well supported by bucket seat and your ankles and knees are also protected from injuries.
- As recumbent bike has larger seat, it tends to be the most exciting feature. Upright bike usually has smaller seat which is uncomfortable.
- Recumbent bike is safer as you cannot stand up on pedals and hence able to eliminate chances of injuries that usually occurs while using an upright bike.
- Recumbent bike is best for people with neurological disorders as they allow a workout for users at all ability levels. Thus it’s safe and it provides low impact complete body workout.
- Its low impact feature reduces the risks of pain and build overall strength. When your hips and back are affected by rheumatoid arthritis, recumbent bikes can be easier because of reclining position and the weight spread on your buttocks and back.
Benefits Of Upright Bikes
- Upright bikes provides more consistent workouts as compared to outdoor riding, as upright position places rider in similar body position.
- Upright bikes ensures you are working same muscle groups that are with outdoor riding that is more of complete body exercise. In contrast recumbent bike usually needs use quads, gluts, calves and hamstrings muscles.
- Upright bikes works abdominal muscle as you keep your body upright to support your workout. As your position is reclined on recumbent bike there is very little to no use of abdominal muscles.
- There is more of upper arm workout as you engage triceps, biceps and shoulders in upright position.
- With upright bikes you have smaller footprint, so it need less space in gym or at your home.
Which Option Burns More Calories?
If you are concerned about maximizing weight loss or calories burns, when selecting between upright or recumbent bike, each option has different benefits that will entice depending on goals. But, both produce same weight loss or calorie burns potentials. All comes down to what you are trying to put into your workout, harder you work more improvement will occur. Decide which type of bike will be good for you by looking at above benefits for each option, then work hard to achieve your goals.
Things To Keep In Your Mind
Be it a recumbent bike or upright bike, at your home or in gym, these points are important
- Ensure that stationary bike is position in a way that all moving parts are allowed safe clearance.
- Make sure there is adequate space to safely mount or dismount your bike.
- Position seat and handlebar height before starting to cycle. Find perfect position in seat. Positioning is important to have a effective and safe workout. Remember that pain front of knee means there is much knee bend and pain back means too little bend in knee.
An individual require to have exercise routines which he or she can enjoy and stick with for longer period of time. Stationary bike are important part of any routine particularly for beginners or individuals with problems in knee, joint or back which make cardiovascular workouts hard. Additionally, if you are a person who uses excuses like cold, hot or rain to inhibit your daily workout routine, stationary bike help you to throw these excuses out of your life. Because it is indoor, you do not need to worry about such issues. If you are not a gym member, you can use recumbent or upright bikes at home. You can do it while watching television, you can do it at night when it is dark and also when it is cold and raining. It is a great way to burn fats and calories and get a good oxygen boost.
Get with the options that best suits your needs and fitness goals. Remember whether it is a recumbent or upright bike, you will only have benefits if you use it regularly and religiously. Set goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely and create circle of health for you for today and for future!