When it comes to getting in shape, cycling is a great option to boost your cardiovascular fitness while also building lower body strength. The exercise bike allows you to get in a great workout anytime, regardless of the weather. But what do you do when you’ve got limited space in your home for exercise equipment? That is when you need a folding exercise bike that can be stored away when not in use.
There are a lot of products to choose the best folding exercise bikes on the market. Unfortunately, many of them are of low quality, not providing the sturdiness or the functionality that you need for a serious workout. In this article, I will separate the best from the rest to present the 10 best foldable exercise bikes on today’s market.
Table Of Contents
- 1 Best Foldable Exercise Bike Brief
- 2 1. Foldable 2-in-1 Fitness Bike Recumbent Upright Bike
- 3 2. Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike
- 4 3. Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike
- 5 4. XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike
- 6 5. XTERRA Fitness FB350 Folding Exercise Bike
- 7 6. Exerpeutic ExerWorK 1000 Fully Adjustable Desk Folding Exercise Bike
- 8 7. Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Folding Recumbent Exercise Bike
- 9 8. ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike
- 10 9. PLENY Foldable Exercise Stationary Bike Workout
- 11 10. Marcy Foldable Upright Exercise Bike
- 12 Buyer’s Guide
- 13 Types Of Folding Exercise Bikes
- 14 Bike Specifications
- 15 Advantages Of Folding Exercise Bikes
- 16 Frequently Asked Questions
- 17 Conclusion
Best Foldable Exercise Bike Brief
1. Foldable 2-in-1 Fitness Bike Recumbent Upright Bike
Editor’s Choice #1: After reviewing dozens of potential best folding exercise bikes, we have rated the Home Fitness Code Foldable 2-in-1 as the best folding exercise bike on a budget. This bike looks deceptively simple yet delivers on all the areas that count; solid and robust thanks to the classic X-frame design, the seat and back padding afford lots of comfort and protection for the butt and lower back. The precision weighted flywheel, v-belt drive combination delivers a consistently smooth, jerk-free pedaling motion. Finally, this is a lightweight bike that folds easily and stores in even the most compact of spaces.
The Foldable 2-in-1 Fitness Bike Recumbent Upright Bike from Home Fitness Code does the better job than any of the other bikes that I have come across at delivering a smooth, quiet and robust exercise bike experience at a budget price. It comes in a classic X-frame design that provides a solid base within an easily foldable design.
The Foldable 2-in-1 is a combination of upright and recumbent exercise bikes. This provides you with the versatility to meet the needs of both those with back and mobility problems; the elderly, and the young and fit. Exercising in an upright position places more emphasis on the core and abs while a recumbent position is more lower body centric.
This folding stationary bike is powered by a precision weighted flywheel and v-belt drive system to deliver a smooth, quiet operation. The bike also feels more secure than many others in its price range. This is a light weight bike, coming in at just 39.7 pounds. That makes it very easy to move around your room and pack away for storage. Transportation wheels make it even easier to transport this portable bike.
There are two sets of handlebars on this combination upright and recumbent stationary bike. Standard upright handles allow for a variety of grips in an upright position. There are also recumbent handles alongside the base of the seat. All handles are foam covered in a slip and sweat resistant material.
The Foldable 2-in-1 comes with a well padded seat that is adjustable to 3 positions. It is wider than many competitors and ergonomically designed to accommodate the tail bone and enhance seating comfort. There is also a generous amount of back padding to protect your lumbar spine.
The LCD digital monitor is basic but functional. It provides you with your key training data, including your training heart rate and calories burned. That’s thanks to the pulse monitors which are built into the handlebars.
For a budget priced multi functional recumbent / upright bike that is solid, reliable, lightweight and fully foldable, the Home Fitness Code Foldable 2-in-1 provides the best overall package that is on the market right now.
2. Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike
Editor’s Choice #2: The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Bike ranks as our second favorite and our top stand alone upright bike. A bike both aesthetically appealing and functionally on point, it features a perimeter weight flywheel and v-belt drive that is on par with the Home Fitness Code Foldable 2-in-1 to deliver a smooth, reliable level of resistance. A surprisingly solid bike, especially when you consider the budget price, it caters to a maximum user weight of 300 lbs, which speaks volumes about the solid frame design.
The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike is a solidly designed magnetic resistance foldable that delivers 8 levels of adjustable resistance. This is an attractive bike that sets up quickly and delivers a reliable, smooth workout. The seat on the Exerpeutic Folding Machine bike is another highlight, being thicker and more ergonomically designed for comfort and performance than the majority of the competition.
The resistance levels, which control a perimeter weighted flywheel and magnetic system, are operated from a centrally positioned control knob. While not meeting the requirements of seasoned riders, it will deliver enough intensity for beginner and intermediate users.
The monitor of the Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic stationary bike consists of a 3.3 x 1.5 inch LCD. While it does not have Wifi connectivity, it does provide readouts of your essential training data.
This exercise bike features an ergonomically designed seat that is well padded for comfort. With a length of 14.6 inches, the seat is larger than most. The bike is listed as being suitable for people between 5’3” and 6’1” and has a max user weight of 300 pounds, which is pretty impressive for a low-cost foldable bike.
Assembly of this bike is easy, as is folding and unfolding. Weighing in at just 41 pounds, the bike is easy to move around your home. With a price tag under $200, the Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike provides you with everything you need for a no frills, basic but functional, and consistently reliable workout that is smooth and quiet.
3. Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike
The Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent is a sturdy bike that comes with a solid frame to support up to 300 pounds of user weight. It features a large padded seat and a full backrest to maximize lumbar support. Oversized pedals allow for customized foot positioning and include straps to keep your feet secure.
There are 8 levels of magnetic resistance on this stationary bike. The bike is powered by a precision weighted flywheel and v-belt drive that deliver a smooth, quiet riding experience. The LCD monitor that comes with this bike is better than most in this price range, providing read outs of your time, distance, speed and pulse. It also features an odometer, which you don’t normally see on budget bikes for the home.
Compact And Lightweight
The 400XL is one of the lightest bikes I came across, weighing in at 43 pounds. It comes with transport wheels to make it even easier to move around. It folds to be compact enough to fit onto a cupboard or under a bed.
The Exerpeutic 400XL recumbent exercise bike is a good choice for beginner exercisers. However, it will not provide sufficient resistance intensity for intermediate or advanced exercisers. This foldable stationary bike is also not suited for people who are more than 6 feet tall.
4. XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike
The Xterra Fitness FB150 exercise bike is a very popular low-cost bike. Though it has recently been upgraded to the FB350 (see below), this bike is still available and still stands on its own merits. It provides you with 8 levels of magnetic resistance, though the highest level is not adequate for advanced users. The wide, triangle design seat is well padded and can be adjusted up and down.
Compact And Comfort For Beginners
This bike is designed for people between the heights of 4’10” and 5’10”, so taller people will have to look elsewhere. The handlebars on the bike are in the conventional U-shape, allowing for multiple grips. However, the handles cannot be adjusted. A foam covering adds comfort to your hold and is moisture resistant.
This bike folds very easily and can be stored away in a cupboard or even under a bed. The max user weight is pretty low at 225 pounds. The monitor is basic but functional, providing you with a running readout of your key training parameters.
The Xterra FB150 will suit beginner exercisers who are looking for a light to moderate intensity workout.
5. XTERRA Fitness FB350 Folding Exercise Bike
The Xterra Fitness FB350 is an update of a previous model, the very popular FB150. This new version is even cheaper than the old model, with several upgrades including a more comfortable seat. It retains the X-frame design which allows for ease of folding while also providing rigid stability.
As you’d expect for the low price, this is a budget bike. But it does a good job of providing you with a solid, secure workout that is quite smooth and functional. The monitor is basic with no built-in programs. There are 8 levels of magnetic resistance on this bike, adjusted by a tension knob located below the handlebars.
The max user weight on this bike is 225 pounds, which is among the lowest on this review page. The seat is adjustable for height and provides a good deal of padding. There is also a backrest for added lumbar support.
The handles on this bike are not able to be adjustable, though there are built-in pulse monitors on them. Pedal straps are provided so you can lock your feet in place.
6. Exerpeutic ExerWorK 1000 Fully Adjustable Desk Folding Exercise Bike
The Exerpeutic ExerWork 1000 Fully Adjustable desk folding bike is the ideal solution for those wanting to work while they’re working out, coming fitted with a desk to take your laptop and whatever else you do to get your job done. You can adjust the angle of the desktop to allow you to get the right level of comfort to get on with the job.
Comfortable Features For Working While You Workout
Being a semi-recumbent bicycle, the ExerWork 1000 provides you with an excellent level of back support and a well padded seat. This is a magnetic resistance bike that provides eight levels of tension knob adjusted resistance. The maximum user weight of this bike is 300 lbs, which is pretty impressive for a budget exercise bike.
The seat of the bike is filled with 3.3 inches of thick airsoft fill and can be adjusted to get the ideal body positioning. The recumbent style pedal design allows you to get an ergonomically enhanced elliptical pedal motion which is knee friendly and easier to perform while you’re concentrating on your work.
The ExerWork 1000 folds easily for storage in an upright position. This bike is adjustable to fit user heights of 5’1” to 6’3”.
7. Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Folding Recumbent Exercise Bike
The Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Foldable Recumbent exercise bike is a simply designed basic recumbent that does its job well. It is fully adjustable to meet the needs of different sized users and provides 8 magnetic resistance levels. The resistance levels will suit novice exercisers but will not deliver enough grunt for more advanced riders.
The Sunny bike delivers a consistently smooth, jerk free pedaling action and operates quietly. However, at the top two levels, there is a little stutteriness. This bike weighs 56 pounds and provides a stable base to work from. Long stabilizer bars do a good job of keeping the bike rigid, even when you’re pedaling at the highest resistance levels.
The Sunny recumbent exercise bike features a 4 kg flywheel. That weight is on the low side, which is why you won’t get enough resistance on this bike to challenge serious riders. Large pedals come with straps to keep you locked in place. However, the plastic pedal straps are quite rigid until you break them in.
Being a recumbent exercise bike, this Sunny foldable provides you with a large, well padded back and seat. The higher than normal seat height is great for people with spinal or mobility issues. There are two sets of handlebars on this bike, allowing you to pedal in an upright as well as a leaning forward position. Hand pulse sensors are built into the handles to provide a pulse display on the monitor.
8. ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike
The ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Bike is a magnetic resistance, X frame design bike that is designed for beginner exercisers with confined workout space in their home. The frame is constructed of steel tubing. The total weight of the bike is just 34.8 pounds, making it extremely lightweight and portable.
The max user weight of this bike is 220 pounds, which is a little on the light side. The seat is made of a foam rubber material which gives a good amount of butt comfort. The seat can be adjusted up and down and can also be switched out if you prefer to buy a more premium level seat.
Magnetic Resistance And Odometer Function
This bike uses manual magnetic resistance by which the resistance is controlled by a centrally located knob under the handlebars. You get eight levels of magnetic resistance, though the highest level will not challenge experienced riders. The transition between resistance levels is a little jerky at times.
The power of this bike comes from its perimeter weighted flywheel. This flywheel is not a bi-directional one so pedaling backward will not benefit you. The pedals on this bike are equipped with straps to give you a strong, secure lock-in. As with most low cost foldables, the display monitor on this model is basic but functional. However, it does have an odometer function, which is quite rare on bikes in this price range.
9. PLENY Foldable Exercise Stationary Bike Workout
The Pleny exercise stationary bike is a well priced, space friendly bike with a heavy-duty frame that you don’t usually see with a foldable bike. A standout feature of this bike is its 16 levels of adjustable resistance. That provides you with a lot of options when it comes to your training intensity and makes the bike versatile for all fitness levels.
Easy Mounting S-Arc Frame
The Pleny foldable features an S-Arc frame design, which sets it apart from most competitors which use the X-frame design. The S-Arc design makes it easier to mount and dismount the bike. That makes this design ideal for people with limited mobility, including the elderly.
As with most low cost foldables, the Pleny foldable bike comes with a pretty basic display monitor. However, it does display your key training information, including speed, calories and time. There is also a countdown timer here, allowing you to track your goal progression.
The max user weight allowance on the Pleny foldable bike is 260 pounds – a decent number for a low-cost foldable thanks to the wide base and sturdy construction. The bike is easy to assemble and is extremely portable, coming with built-in transportation wheels.
10. Marcy Foldable Upright Exercise Bike
The Marcy Foldable bike is a compact sturdy ‘X’ folding design bike. It’s made from 14-gauge steel, making it more rigid than it may look at first glance. In fact, this machine has an impressive max user weight of 300 pounds.
The Marcy exercise bike is easy and quick to set up and fold away, being very light weight and extremely portable. This is a pretty basic exercise bike which doesn’t come with any built-in exercise programs and has a basic monitor. However, you will get a very stable frame, a smooth belt drive and a quiet magnetic resistance system.
The Marcy folding indoor exercise bike provides you with a wide, ergonomically designed seat that features a generous amount of high-density foam padding. The height of the seat is adjustable up and down. However, there is no ability to adjust the seat horizontally so you are unable to adjust the distance between your butt and the handlebars.
The flat pedals of the Marcy foldable bike are gripped to provide a secure hold. They also provide you with safety straps to keep you well locked in. Handlebars allow for a variety of gripping options, including sitting in an upright position and leaning forward.
In summary, the Marcy folding fitness bike is a quality low-cost workout option that is ideal for people with limited workout space. It will provide you with a basic no-frills workout but isn’t made for people who are outside the average height range.
How to choose the best folding exercise bike for you.
Types Of Folding Exercise Bikes
Of the three types of exercise bike – recumbent, spin and upright – upright and recumbent bikes are available in foldable form. A recumbent exercise bike is designed to put the rider in a more reclined seating position so that your legs are close to horizontal when you are pedaling. There is also more padding and support for your back with a recumbent bike.
Upright bikes look a lot more like an outdoor cycle. They have smaller seats with pedals under the seat so that you are pedaling in a standard vertically elliptical motion.
Recumbent bikes are more comfortable to sit on and are better suited for people with limited mobility and/or lower back complaints. The stable body position also frees up the hands more than an upright bike, allowing the user to hold a book or tablet rather than having to hold on to the bike’s handlebars. However, an upright bike engages more muscles and burns more calories.
The recumbent bike does not activate the muscles of the core as much as the upright bike – something to bear in mind when choosing the best folding exercise bike for you, depending on your goals.
Types Of Folding Exercise Bikes
There are three types of resistance used on exercise bikes:
- Fan based
- Direct Contact
Fan based exercise bikes are not usually available as foldables because the fan wheel is too big to make folding practical.
The majority of foldable bikes are fitted with a flywheel, which is a disc-like metal wheel that serves as a store of rotational energy. The flywheel replaces the front wheel of an outdoor bike and is connected to the pedals by a chain or belt. The heavier the flywheel, the greater the resistance potential of the bike.
Magnetic resistance bikes make use of a pair of magnets situated on either side of the flywheel. The closer they get to the flywheel, the greater the resistance. Direct contact bikes use friction applied directly to the flywheel to create resistance. This can produce a jerky, unnatural riding experience and is not recommended.
Magnetic resistance is the smoothest and most popular form of resistance used in foldable exercise bikes.
Foldable exercise bikes are available in a range of configurations. The most important considerations to take into account are the weight, height, foldability and portability of the bike.
Weight And Height Capacity
Folding exercise bikes are meant to be stored away after use, meaning it will be constantly moved around. The weight of the bike is, therefore, an important consideration. After all, you don’t want to over-exert yourself before the workout even begins. Most foldable exercise bikes will weigh less than 50 pounds.
The height of folding exercise bikes is a factor when it comes to storage. The height of the bike is dependent on the handlebar and monitor positioning. On most bikes, the maximum height will be less than 50 inches.
The folding mechanism of the bike should be easy to operate and secure. It should allow for one step operation so that you can set it up in a matter of seconds. The problem with many foldables is that the frame rigidity is compromised by the folding mechanism. Check the maximum user weight of the bike to get a gauge on the frame rigidity. Ideally, it should be greater than 250 pounds.
Folding exercise bikes are meant to be moved rather than remain in one place all day. To promote portability the bike will be lightweight and it should have wheels that allow you to roll it along the floor.
When you are choosing from the best folding exercise bikes, there are several key features that you need to drill down on.
Here’s an overview of what you should be looking for:
The comfort of your riding experience is going to dictate how long you spend working out. Central to your comfort experience is the bike seat. You should look for a seat that is wide enough to accommodate your butt and that has plenty of padding.
The seat should also be adjustable for customized positioning, both up and down and horizontally. This horizontal positioning ability is important as it allows you to bring the seat closer to the handles, relieving lower back strain for shorter people. Having a vertically adjustable seat also allows for proper pedaling height, relieving pressure on the knee joint.
There are two types of pedals found on folding exercise bikes:
- Toe Cage
Flat pedals are the most common on foldable bikes. These are the types of pedals that were probably on the first bike you learned to ride. They are simple, straight and do not feature any way to lock your foot in place.
Not very many bikes feature a toe cage to lock your foot in place, but some do. The ability to get a secure foothold is an advantage, especially if you are going to be training with high intensity as when doing HIIT style workouts.
The best foldable bikes will allow you to unscrew the pedals that come as standard and replace them with pedals of your choice.
The handlebars on your foldable bike should be adjustable both fore and aft. They should also provide you with multiple gripping positions so that you can sit in both an upright and a leaning forward position. Handles should also be covered in padding that is sweat resistant and comfortable.
The display on a foldable compact exercise bike should provide you with a running readout of your key training data, including your training time, distance, RPMs, calories burned and heart rate. The display should be large enough to see from the seat when exercising and, ideally, backlit. You may want to look for a monitor that has Wifi capability so that it can pair with your fitness app, allowing you to save your training diagnostics for later comparison.
The frames of folding bikes should be rigid enough to be able to handle intense workouts day in and day out. Many foldables have an X-frame design which drives the weight directly into the ground. The wider the base, the more stable the bike will be. As a general guide, you should look for a bike that has a maximum user weight that is 50 pounds heavier than the weight of the heaviest anticipated user.
Looking After Your Folding Exercise Bike
To get the best performance out of your bike you should follow a regular maintenance schedule.
- After every exercise session, you should wipe the bike down to remove sweat, focusing on the frame, handlebars, and seat. Use a dry, damp cloth to do this.
- Once a week you should check the bike for vibrations. Vibration problems can usually be fixed by tightening the pedals or bottom bracket. You may also have to adjust the tension of the drivetrain.
- You should also lubricate the bike every week. Spray a small amount of lubricant into the pop-pin assemblies and the chain drive.
Advantages Of Folding Exercise Bikes
The most obvious advantage of a folding exercise bike is that it enables you to exercise in a constricted amount of living space. The bike can be stored away in a cupboard or under a bed when not in use and then brought out to exercise on.
Another advantage of choosing the best folding exercise bike is that it is usually considerably less expensive than a non-folding exercise bike. That is because the frame is lighter and, therefore, less expensive to produce.
Folding stationary bikes are extremely portable and easy to assemble. They usually come with transportation wheels and weigh less than 50 pounds.
Frequently Asked Questions
The best folding exercise bike on the market right now is the Foldable 2-in-1 Fitness Bike Recumbent Upright Bike. This bike allows you to switch between an upright and a recumbent exercise position, making it suitable for people with lower back issues. The folding frame sets up instantly and provides a solid base. You also get a smooth pedaling workout on this bike.
Yes, a folding exercise bike is good for exercise. It will allow you to get an effective calorie burning workout even if you have restricted workout space in your home. Exercising on folding bikes will also work your cardiovascular system to improve the health of your heart and lungs. In addition, it will strengthen the muscles of your lower body, especially the glutes, quads and calves.
The best exercise bikes for home use are ones that uses magnetic resistance to provide a smooth, jerk free resistance that is also quiet to operate. A non-folding bike is preferable as it will usually have a much more sturdy frame than that on a folding exercise bike. However, if space is an issue for you, then a folding magnetic with a solid frame and a wide base is the best option for you.
Yes, you can lose weight on a folding bike. However, you will only do so by combining your bike exercise sessions with a reduced-calorie diet. By combining the two, you should end up each day in a caloric deficit where your body is using up more calorie energy than you are putting into it. This will force the body to draw on stored body fat to meet its energy demands. As a result, you will lose weight.
When you choose a folding exercise bike, pay special attention to the rigidity of the frame as folding bikes have frames lighter than those on non-folding bikes. Look, too, for a bike that uses a smooth, quiet magnetic resistance. The best folding exercise bikes should also allow for up-down and back/front adjustment on both the handles and the seat.
A folding bike is the ideal workout solution for space-challenged apartment dwellers and those looking for a low-cost effective workout option. In this article, I have whittled down the hundreds of foldable bikes on the market to the 10 top offerings for best foldable exercise bike. You can buy any of them with confidence. However, the best folding stationary bike on the market right now is the Foldable 2-in-1 Fitness Bike Recumbent Upright Bike, which provides the versatility of both an upright and recumbent exercise bike.