The commercial grade exercise bikes are usually heavier, higher quality, and more expensive than the home versions. These would be appropriate for home use if you would prefer an industrial design or have special needs for one.
One potential reason to purchase a commercial machine for the home would be if you are heavier than the weight recommendation for the home design. If this is the case and the dollar cost associated with a new machine is too much, there are refurbished machines that are a few years old that you can buy. These have been retired from gyms or the gym has closed and they will usually come with a limited warranty.
Spin bikes are different than the stationery bike but there are two important things that each will offer that will make for a better choice.
First you need them to be adjustable so you can comfortably fit your bike to you. Some machines are only capable of adjusting to certain body heights or sizes.
Second make sure the commercial bike you are investing in isn’t a lemon model. The exercise bike you choose has to have a proven track record of being able to put up with the rough handling you plan to put it through.
Commercial exercise bike user weight recommendation will vary from bike to bike. When choosing your bike it’s better to go a little higher to ensure the bike will maintain its operational stability.The bike may cost a little more but here is not the place to skim on cost.
The bike itself will be fairly heavy and the published weight will include the weight of the frame and flywheel. Often times the shipping weight will be published as well.
One drawback to a commercial grade bike is they may not have some of the “options” for accessorizing that the home models have. The Home version exercise equipment will offer such things as speakers, built in entertainment, sometimes special electronics that will hook up to apps and other things designed for motivational encouragement.
Choosing how much to pay for your bike will also reflect what you get in the way of function and convenience. The cheaper in-home stationary bikes can be found with friction resistance usually not found in a commercial machine because it is noisy and wears out quickly. Stationary bikes designed for gym use will be quieter and provide the resistance with a magnetic or air resistance with the magnetic being the quieter choice. These can be driven with belt or chair drive where the belt is quieter with lower maintenance.
Stationary Bike vs Spin Bike
The main difference with the spin bike is it’s heavy weight flywheel that is linked to the pedals directly. This means you can’t just stop pedalling like you do on a regular bike or stationary bike. The pedals will keep moving because of the momentum you have built up by pedalling.
The advantage of having the weighted flywheel keep spinning is to push the rider into a faster pedalling movement. The design of the spin bike is more similar to a road bike.
The seat can be adjusted forward or back so the feet can be properly placed under the body. Most spin bikes also have clips so you have the option to wear your usual pedalling shoes as well.
The handlebar height on the spin bike can also be adjusted.
Because the spin bike mimics the functionality of the road bike you can challenge your fitness more. The stationary bike isn’t made to comfortably stand on the pedals to sprint or climb. Being able to do this will work your cardio system as well as legs in a more challenging way.
The resistance on a spin bike is adjusted with a lever like the road bike where the stationary bike has a knob or uses electronic dash board to select the resistance.
If you are considering a spin bike because you do ride the roads but are concerned with the price, an alternative is to get a fluid bike trainer for your road bike. These work great and you can operate your bike as usual. The advantages of a spin bike over the trainer though is you will get more of a workout than you will with a trainer. The heavy weighted flywheel can give much more performance training from the resistance it can provide.