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Stationary Bike VS Bike Trainer : Which Is Better In 2021?


Stationary Bike VS Bike Trainer
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In this article, you will find a comparison between trainer rollers and stationary bikes, two alternatives that are very useful for training indoors and under controlled conditions.

Next, we will describe and compare the following factors, both for stationary bikes and for trainer rollers:

  • Adjustability 
  • Resistance control
  • Ease of storage
  • Time to assemble and disassemble
  • Posture during training
  • Connectivity with third-party apps

Now yes, let’s start talking about stationary bikes and cycling trainers

What is an exercise bike?

A stationary or stationary bike is an exercise machine that simulates exercise on a bicycle. Within their operation, some models have a system, frequently mechanical or magnetic, to generate different levels of resistance.

There are more than one type:

  • Conventional or vertical.
  • Folding verticals
  • Reclined
  • Spinning
  • Elliptical bike
  • With air resistance for CrossFit workouts

Likewise, among the different models, we find among their particularities some with wheels (flywheel) with different weights that make pedaling smoother and more efficient. With the exception of the bicycle with wind resistance, whose strength and intensity increase as the force exerted on the pedals increases.

What is a trainer roller? 

Before going into the subject, it is important to clarify that in this area, we will include the rollers or bike rollers and the support trainer or bike trainer. Both options start from the same principle of using the same bike that you would normally use to ride on the road but train in controlled conditions.

They are usually used to train by controlling the variables, to warm up before a competition or, when the weather conditions are not suitable for going outside to pedal.

Each one presents peculiarities, as well as different levels of resistance, ways to obtain balance, and accessories to expand the experience.

But basically, we find that in the support trainer there will be two groups:

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One group will be those in which the bicycle tire will not be removed, but is subject to the trainer, and the other group -which is more modern- in which you will have You have to remove the rear wheel of your bike to attach it directly to the frame of the trainer, which will give you greater control of your workouts and balance on the bike.

In the case of the most common bicycle roller, no wheel will be attached to it or its structure, so you will have to obtain the balance yourself, which makes them more complex to master.

However, it is also possible to find those in which it is possible to hold either the front wheel with bases.

Within this group, we can highlight at least three types: 

  • Free movement
  • Resistance
  • E-Motion

And as we had already mentioned, the support trainer, which in turn, we can find them in the following types:

  • Fluid
  • Wind or Turbo
  • Magnetic

Comparison Between Exercise Bikes ( Stationary Bike ) VS Bike Trainer In 2021

Stationary Bike VS Bike Trainer
Stationary Bike VS Bike Trainer

Adjustability

Regarding their anatomical adaptability, the trainer and the rollers do not have some type of adjustment that responds to the anatomical needs of the cyclist.

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Let us remember that in this case, one uses the same bicycle with which one would go out to train, and the position of the person who uses these systems will depend completely on the fitting of the bicycle. In this case, the adjustment will be made directly to the bicycle.

On the other hand, stationary or stationary bicycles do have adjustments to the handlebars, saddle, and other points, depending on the model.

Resistance control

The rollers are great for working on your pedaling and developing a smooth, powerful and consistent pedal stroke. And although there are manufacturers that are developing models of rollers with modulable resistance (“E-Motion” rollers), they are still the fewest. 

As far as trainers go, these are best for the highly structured workouts that many riders do. Because of its adjustable resistance and controlled by the computer of “smart” trainers, today it is perfect for such endeavors. Since you’re attached to a heavy, stable base, you can focus solely on maintaining that range rather than worrying about balancing on the bike.

In the case of the exercise bike, all models have some adjustable resistance system. It can be mechanical, magnetic, hydraulic, wind, or electronic, which are perfect for the more structured type of training that includes resistance work.

Ease of storage

Rollers are usually lighter than trainers and stationary bikes. There are some models that are foldable that are very easy to pack, and even some others that can be folded up into three sections that are even easier to store. This makes it easy to slide them under a bed or stand upright in a closet, making them ideal for apartments or any space that is limited.

In comparison, the trainers can be heavier, but they also have storage facilities, as some of their models have folding tripod legs. However, it appears that the more technologically advanced trainers tend to be bulkier. Keep in mind that rollers and trainers are more compact than stationary bikes since the bike is not part of the system.

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Although there are folding exercise bikes, they are not currently a common model. Generally, exercise bike models are less optimal for storage. Stationary bikes are ideal for those who have a space dedicated exclusively to training. 

Time to assemble and disassemble

Although once it is located where the stationary bike will be used, it will not be necessary to assemble or disassemble it to perform our training. The case of the rollers is different since it will be necessary to assemble and disassemble them to use them.

However, due to the simplicity of its operation and design, the rollers are easy to install and uninstall since, in many of its models, it will be enough to unfold them to be able to mount our bicycle on them.

Otherwise, the trainer, which in its more advanced models, it will be necessary to remove the rear wheel to assemble and disassemble our bicycle in its transmission system. But it is an operation that is very simple and does not require much time, and in which in very few cases, you will require some type of tool to remove the wheel from your bicycle. 

Posture during training

In both rollers and trainers, the posture will depend on the bicycle that is mounted on either of these systems.

There are those who prefer these devices mainly because they usually train on the same bike that you would normally ride outdoors. The geometry would be exactly the same in your indoor and outdoor workouts. It is important to mention that in the case of rollers, it can take a couple of sessions to get used to, and they require a certain learning curve to master them.

On the other hand, in the exercise bike, it will be necessary to adjust the height of the saddle, the handlebar, and other adjustments that each model, in particular, allows for achieving the position you are looking for. More sophisticated stationary bikes allow you to emulate the exact geometry of your bike but are usually more expensive.

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Connectivity with third-party apps

Traditionally, free-motion rollers are simple and not suitable for connecting with third-party software or devices. However, it is already possible to pedal on digital smart rollers that use Ant + and Bluetooth Smart for their connectivity. The same happens with support trainers, in which it is more common to find characteristics for connectivity with third parties.

On stationary bikes, some models –the most advanced- have an HD screen and a series of sensors that allow you to monitor all kinds of metrics, even perform iconic routes and ascents through CycleOps VirtualTraining or other similar applications.

Also, Don’t Forget To Check,

Exercise Bikes ( Stationary Bike ) VS Bike Trainer Rollers: Which is Better in 2021?

I really don’t think it’s about which one is better, rather which one is right for you. Are you a beginner or a dedicated cyclist?

What type of training do you want to focus on?

If you are a beginner, stationary bikes and trainers are your best option. The trainer holds your rear wheel and attaches securely to your bike frame. Provides you stability and promotes balance. You will not have to worry about falling, so you can focus on your workouts, the variables, and the metrics that best suit your training from day one.

Bicycle rollers, on the other hand, are ideal for skilled riders. It will be difficult for a beginner to try to balance a bike on metal drums. Yes, centrifugal force can keep you balanced, but changing paces and focusing your training will be more difficult until you master balancing on the rollers.

An advantage of the trainer rollers is that you use the same bicycle that you use in your rides. This way, there will be no variation in geometry, and you will get used to the grips, seat, and pedals.

On some stationary bikes, a very precise degree of adjustments will be possible that will allow you to approximate this geometry, but it will still be another bike.

For its part, one of the most notable advantages of stationary bikes is that there is no need to be mounting and dismount the bike. You just have to put on comfortable clothes and get on pedaling.

What alternative do you think best suits your needs, the stationary bike or some type of trainer?

Top Rated in Exercise Bikes on Amazon In 2021

There are many factors to consider when picking the right indoor exercise bike for you; below are the most important ones, which we considered while we were researching this list.

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1. XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike

XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike
XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike
Features:
  • Solid X-frame design folds to just 18.1″ x 18.1″ of floor space when not in use
  • Large anatomically designed seat and multi-position padded handlebars are designed for long-lasting comfort and support
  • 2″ x 1″ LCD window clearly displays speed, distance, time, calories, and pulse
  • Quickly adjust up to 8 levels of resistance using the large manual dial located just below the console.
  • Monitor your heart rate using the hand-pulse sensors conveniently located on the handlebars to stay in your target heart rate zone.

*Don’t Forget to Check the Price may be Running Exclusive Discounts.

2. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1714 Evolution Pro Cycling Bike

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1714 Evolution Pro Cycling Bike

Features:

Bike Style: Indoor cycling | Resistance Style: Manual resistance knob | Product Weight: 136.5 pounds | Maximum Weight Capacity: 330 pounds | Dimensions: 48.5 x 24 x 53.5 inches

Pros:

  • Heavy-duty flywheel
  • Easy to customize the fit
  • Easy to assemble

Cons:

  • No digital display
  • No “smart” features

View On Amazon

*Don’t Forget to Check the Price may be Running Exclusive Discounts.

3. Best Budget: YOSUDA Indoor Cycling Bike

YOSUDA Indoor Cycling Bike Stationary

Features:

Bike Style: Indoor cycling | Resistance Style: Manual resistance knob | Product Weight: 68 pounds | Maximum Weight Capacity: 270 pounds | Dimensions: 40 x 22 x 45 inches

Pros:

  • Smooth, quiet ride
  • Provides basic ride stats
  • Additional tablet mount

Cons:

  • Lower weight capacity than other options
  • Very firm seat

View On Amazon


*Don’t Forget to Check the Price may be Running Exclusive Discounts.

Our Verdict:

We hope this article is helpful for you. If you know someone who could use this article, please share it.

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Jonathan James

Hey! I am Jonathan James, editor and co-founder of the Honest Kid Biker.I ride simply because I love to.There is nothing about cycling that I don’t like! I sometimes take part in group-rides and compete in races.

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