Best Indoor Bicycle Trainer
Cycle trainers aren’t for everyone, but they’re not just for the most serious of cyclists either. Of course, if cycling is your passion and you live somewhere where the climate forces everyone inside for a portion of the year, a cycle trainer is a must have. Because of their relatively small size. They also come in handy for people wo live in cramped living spaces but use cycling as their primary means of cardio exercise. If more people knew about the availability of cycle trainers exercise bikes would probably not be as popular as they are. Educate yourself on the benefits of these excellent cardio machines with our indoor cycle buyer’s guide listed below.
Best Indoor Bike Trainer:
Indoor bike trainers are pretty small for how important they really are. These trainers allow cyclists to train and riders to ride no matter what it looks like outside and the best of the best may even trick you into thinking you are actually on the road. Trainers are especially important for dedicated cyclist who may not be able to make it outside because of inclement weather or other potential dangers. You will never go wrong with these bike trainers which were chosen as the best because they're manufactured with quality materials which give these trainers stable and durable, convenient systems for easy mounting and dismounting of your bike, and resistance types which deliver a smooth and quiet, yet authentic road-like feel.
I cannot say enough about the positive attributes which Cycle Ops is so well known for. This particular model is the future of cycle trainers with programmable electronic resistance for a guaranteed smooth ride and Bluetooth capability. It also offers that peace of mind you look for in a top tier brand with their solid steel frame and heavy duty alloy parts. Read Full Review
The Wahoo Kickr remains one of the best bike trainers available because of its solid design and quality parts. It keeps up with technology with Bluetooth and ANT+ compatibility without losing the stability and quietness which users have come to expect. You never have to get off your seat to make resistance adjustments and if you close your eyes you may just forget that you are not actually on the road. Read Full Review
The Kurt Kinetic bike trainer is an easy one to talk about because it has so many awesome attributes placed together in one solid machine. Like other trainers in its class it offers a road-like feel, but unlike others it also allows users to rock back and forth for an even more authentic experience. All of the awesome features offered on this device are backed by and unconditional lifetime warranty. Read Full Review
The Vortex offer more than you could ask for with smooth electromagnetic resistance which can controlled by any Bluetooth device. When paired with a computer it offers even more options which enhance your experience. This is a solid, light-weight, durable device, and I wouldn't be surprised if we saw a lot of companies turning to designs like this in the future. Read Full Review
The Minoura Rim Drive is unlike anything else on the market with its rim-resistance system which puts zero stress on the tire. It is super simple to mount and a handle bar control makes changing resistance levels easy during your ride. Though it goes about its resistance a little bit differently it still offers a smooth, quiet, road-like feel that you would expect from a top tier bike trainer. Read Full Review
Best Budget Indoor Bicycle Trainer:
Indoor cycle trainers are one of the most brilliant inventions ever, not just in the cycling world, but in the sporting world in general. They allow avid and novice cyclers the option of a real cycle feel without having to leave their house which is perfect for days or entire seasons of inclement weather. If you are a novice cyclist or just a cyclist on a budget you may be wary of dropping $500 to $1,000+ on a cycle trainer which is understandable. Luckily these trainers have been gaining in popularity ever since they debuted and now one can find a nice model on a pretty tight budget. These indoor cycle trainers were chosen as the best because of their ease of mounting and stability, ease of adjustability and high resistance levels, and a road-like feel which is both smooth and quiet during operation.
The Blackburn Tech Fluid Trainer is solid from the ground up; built with some of the strongest materials possible it even comes with a lifetime warranty. It offers fluid resistance which is uncommon in a budget friendly cycle trainer, but offers a smooth real road feel. It also uses an innovative crank mounting system which is so easy that you could do it with one hand behind your back. Read Full Review
Cycle Ops is one of the best cycle trainer manufacturers at any price point including budget trainers. This trainer is the first and best at progressive magnetic resistance and can fit nearly any tire size made. A lifetime warranty and unprecedented turn dial roller adjuster wrap up the most impressive features of this device. Read Full Review
The Rad Max Racer Pro is exactly what a pro on a budget is looking for. It fits almost every type of tire out there and can be easily mounted and dismounted in a snap. It also uses magnetic resistance so it’s super smooth and quiet so you won’t bother other people in the house no matter the time of day. Read Full Review
Bike Lane is a relatively unknown company, but they offer this truly impressive piece of machinery at a budget price which should make some more expensive brands take notice. From seven magnetic resistance levels to one of the easiest dismounting methods possible, this is truly one of the best budget trainers available. Read Full Review
The Cycle Ops Wind Trainer is easily one of the best budget trainers on the market today because of its price point and functionality. While the only downside is that it can get a little noisy, the infinite resistance levels and a smooth road-like feel make this a very impressive cycle trainer. Read Full Review
Indoor Bicycle Trainer Buyer's Guide
For the most part almost every indoor cycle trainer looks the same; there are a few exceptions like cycle rollers which work slightly different than a traditional cycle trainer. Though they are close in looks, there are some physical attributes which set them apart.
Most of the physical attributes of an indoor cycle trainer are tied into their resistance types however the other traits you want to always look for when choosing any type of trainer are the materials (such as steel, aluminum, iron, plastic) and the amount of noise they make as some can be unbearably loud.
Indoor cycles are fairly simple devices without much in the way of huge differences from one model to another, but there are a few extra features that come along with some trainers. Some top shelf models offer the ability to move, or lean during use which mimics the feeling of riding on the road.
Indoor cycle trainers are small, but intricate so you always want to make sure that your trainer comes with a detailed warranty that goes out at least three years.
This is where things get interesting when it comes to indoor cycle trainers. The most important trait an indoor cycle should have is the feeling like you’re actually riding on the road; if the option you’re looking at doesn’t provide that sensation, you might as well get an exercise bike.
There are four different types of resistance for cycle trainers and different cyclist will swear by different resistance types.
You won’t find wind resistance on many cycle trainers, but some avid cyclists love it. It works by using the natural resistance of wind to create pedal resistance which is as infinite as riding a normal bike. It may feel more natural since you are creating wind around you, but it is also the loudest resistance out of the bunch.
These cycle trainers are the most simple yet at the same time most challenging. They usually only come with one spinning bar in front and two in the back which support the wheels. The resistance isn’t the most challenging with these trainers, however they’re not locked like other trainers which force you to maintain balance, adding an extra element of difficulty and authenticating the feel of a road ride.
Magnetic resistance in a cycle trainer works like every other piece of cardio equipment; magnets on a fly wheel become more or less polarized as to increase or decrease the resistance. This type of resistance doesn’t offer the best road-like feel, but it does offer a smoother, quieter form of resistance.
Fluid resistance offers the smoothest, quietest, and most road-like feel you will find in a cycle trainer. The idea is quite simple though the follow through is actually fairly technical. What it boils down to is there is a tiny plastic fan that moves against fluid in the wheel shell. The harder you pedal, the more the resistance increases.