A stationary bike is one of the best equipment effectively used in strengthening weak or bad knees such as arthritis, torn meniscus, torn ACL, cartilage and ligament tear, and other weak knee conditions. The best exercise bikes for bad knees are capable of strengthening the knee joints without worsening the injury.
A large percentage of elders suffer pain in their knees due to degenerative diseases such as osteoarthritis. Therefore, there arises a great need to get an exercise bike suitable for people with bad knees and arthritis.
You will find in this article, answers to each of your questions pertaining to exercise bikes that are suitable for people with weak knees, the types, and how to recognize and select good stationary bikes for bad knees.
Furthermore, you will find some of the exercise bikes suggested for arthritic and bad knees as you read further.
Also, exercise bikes also help in toning the body, burning fats, strengthening the hearts, lungs, and sleep comfortably. In a nutshell, it is of great importance to the overall health of the user.
What is the best exercise bike for knee problems?
This is one of the frequently asked questions. In answering this question, certain factors are needed to be considered in choosing the best exercise bike for people with knee problems. All of these factors will be discussed as you read further. Now let us discuss the types of stationary exercise bikes, we have two types; upright and recumbent stationary bike.
Top List of the Best Stationary Exercise Bike for Bad Knees
Weight Capacity (lbs.)
|Exerpeutic 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike|
Best Recumbent Bike for Bad knees
|Schwinn 170 Upright Bike|
Best Upright Bike for Bad knees
|Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike with Resistance ME-709|
|Exerpeutic ExerWorK 1000 Fully Adjustable Desk Folding Exercise Bike|
Best Bike with Working Desk
|NordicTrack Commercial Studio Cycle|
Best Bike with Screen
|Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike|
Recumbent Exercise Bike
|ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike|
Upright Exercise Bike
Types of Exercise Bike
Upright Stationary Exercise Bike
An upright exercise bike is similar in structure to your outdoor bikes. On this, you will be able to sit in an upright position, bend your back towards the handle of the bike a little, and your neck bent slightly.
Benefits of an Upright Exercise Bike
- It is easier to get on or down from it and that is a good one for people having knee problems
- The upright stationary bike helps the knee, hips and upper body region to be strong and fit.
- Improves cardiovascular and bones
- Consistent working out closely related to the traditional cycling
- It gives almost the same experience as riding an outdoor bike.
- Takes lesser space in the home
Setbacks of Upright Exercise Bike
- An upright stationary bike might not appropriate for folks with back problems and elders
- The seat is small compared to recumbent exercise bikes and no backrest to support the back.
- It can assert more strain to the back muscles of the user.
Read our overall guide on the best exercise bike here
Recumbent Stationary Exercise Bike
A recumbent stationary bike is a good exercise bike that is suitable for folks with back problems most especially our elderly ones that find balancing on an upright exercise bike hard. It is different from an upright exercise bike in structure but similar in function. It consists of a seat wider than upright stationary bikes and backrest, thereby making it more comfortable for elderly ones or anyone with back conditions.
Benefits of Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Recumbent bikes are generally suitable for folks with physical limitations as it puts the user in a more comfortable reclined position.
- It enhances the comfortability of folks with back problems
- Recumbent exercise bikes have larger seat, making them the appropriate ones for elderly folks
- They are also more convenient, safer, and comfortable to use
Setbacks of Recumbent Exercise Bike
- It consumes more space than an upright exercise bike
- Recumbent bikes have less impact on fitness than upright bikes
However, both recumbent and upright stationary exercise bikes are good products for bad and arthritic knees, torn meniscus, torn ACL, cartilage and ligament tear, and other weak knee conditions. In getting an exercise bike, your preference and health conditions are to be put into considerations.
How to Select the Best Stationary Bike for Bad Knees
Listed below are some factors to put into consideration while choosing a stationary exercise bike.
Type or Style of Bike (Recumbent vs. Upright)
There are factors to consider before choosing the style of an exercise bike, getting the full knowledge of the pros and cons of upright and recumbent in this article will be of utmost help. You may need to seek professional advice from your trainer regarding the type that is suitable for your knee.
However, we recommend an upright bike if you do not have back problems, however, if your back hurts as much as your knee, it is vital to go for a recumbent bike.
Max Weight Capacity
The importance of this cannot be overemphasized, as a failure to consider the weight capacity of the exercise bike you choose can lead to serious damage to the bike as well as injuries to the rider. With the knowledge of this, it is of utmost importance to find out the maximum weight the selected stationary bike can hold and ensure it is higher than your body weight to avoid any damages.
This comes with almost all stationary bikes, it enables you to adjust to your desired fitness level, decrease or increase the difficulty level according to your preference. If you are a beginner with arthritis and bad knees, it is vital to start your workout from the lowest resistance level to avoid pushing yourself beyond the limit which can also be a disadvantage to your knees.
Ergonomic Features and Comfort
It is very crucial to ensure the comfort of the user; thereby certain features are put into place to enable this. The seat, handle, backrest and armrest should be well-padded and as well adjustable to accommodate differences in heights of many users. Ensuring the wheels of the exercise bike is easier to move from one place to another.
Added advantages are accessories such as cup holders, MP3 players, type of screen display, and USB port. It makes your biking session lively and fun.
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Best Stationary Exercise Bikes for Knee Problems: Top 7 Review
These are our top lists for the best stationary exercise bikes for painful knees. Each is tested and has been purchased by many buyers with many positive remarks.
- Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
- Product setup dimensions: 33”L x 19”W x 46”H
- Foldable design
- 8 level Magnetic Tension System
- Product Weight: 43 pounds
- Adjustable Large Seat Cushion and Backrest
- Style: Recumbent Bike
EXERPEUTIC 400XL Folding Recumbent Bike is equipped with a lot of features that aid the comfort of the users. Firstly, the design is semi-recumbent, this makes getting in and out easier and that makes it suitable for people with arthritic knees.
It has wheels at the base that aid easy rolling/transport from one place to another. The seat and backrest are properly cushioned, and can also be adjusted to fit in users’ height from 5ft to 6ft- 2in.
Furthermore, it is equipped with hand pulse sensors focusing on the heart rate zone and an LCD screen to monitor burned calories, distance, time, speed, scan, and pulse. It’s easier to adjust the workout difficulty level though its 8-level magnetic tension system by simply adjusting the resistance knob.
This is a good choice for the family due to all these amazing features. Also, its structure makes it one of the best exercise bikes for arthritic and bad knees.
- It is a little bit noisy in nature
- The seat can be inconvenient for users with a heavyweight.
- Bike Style: Upright Stationary Bike
- 9 heart rate programs for up to 4 user profiles.
- Adjustable height for users height 4’6″ to 6’6″
- Product Dimension: 41.3″L X 21.4″W X 55.6”H
- 25 levels of computer-aided resistance
- 10 resistance quick keys with 12 profile
- 29 exercise programs
- Weight Capacity: 300 pounds
Schwinn 170 Upright Bike is one of the best upright exercise bikes suitable for people with knee problems. It consists of interesting features like 9 heart rate programs and it can store workout information for up to 4 users and which makes it easy to monitor the rate of progress made.
It also consists of different resistance levels up to 25 levels, this is effective in changing the difficulty level as you desire during your workout.
Furthermore, it has in-built USB ports for charging your gadget as you proceed with your work out, MP3 for the music player is inclusive as well. Bluetooth connectivity sync with fitness apps like Explore the World, UA Record, MyFitnessPal, and so on.
Also, it’s wide pedals and straps aid proper placement of feet for your comfort, convenience and ensures the feet stay in place during cycling. Also, there is a shoulder rest while engaging in your workout. With all of these in place, you can be assured of comfort and safety while using this bike with an effective cycling experience.
- Style: Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Padded seat and armrest
- Product dimensions: 55.5L x 25W x 37.5H inches
- Max Weight Capacity: 300 pounds
- Product Weight: 61 pounds
This recumbent exercise bike is affordable, yet it consists of great features that help your fitness. Its specifications are listed above. You can go through it for more information.
Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike is one of the most purchased exercise bikes due to its construction featuring 14-gauge steel tubing giving it a sturdy structure with a powder-coated finish. It is sturdy and makes use of magnetic resistance up to eight levels. Its tension knob can be used to set the difficulty level according to your fitness level.
Also, we won’t fail to talk about its LD screen which makes it easier to monitor time, speed, distance, calories burned, and record distance covered. All of these are useful in monitoring your progress during your workout sessions.
This is one of the best exercise bikes for arthritis knee and other painful knee conditions. Its comfortability is top-notch; it’s a great choice for families as it can accommodate a wide range of users’ height.
- The backlight is not included in its LCD screen thereby an external light is needed when in a dark place.
Users Height Recommendation: 5’1” to 6’3”
- Style: Semi-recumbent (Folding)
- Weight Capacity: 300 pounds
- Adjustable desktop and seat
- 8 level Magnetic Tension control system
This exercise bike has a large desk you can place your books, laptop, or any other accessories. This enables you to do two things at a time, you can be working on your system or other devices and as well be involved in the exercise.
Exerpeutic ExerWorK Exercise Bike is one of the stationary exercise bikes that are effective for your fitness and a suitable one for bad knees. The seat is well-padded and its height can be adjusted from 41-45 inches at 1-inch increment, its angle can be set at 0, 16, and 33 degrees.
Another interesting thing is its foldable design to compact size and can be rolled through its wheel. The desktop and seat can be adjusted to your preference.
Also, a drawer to store things is included thereby making it easy to keep your work materials safe. This is the best option for people who work for long hours while sitting as they can work and exercise to keep fit simultaneously.
- Style: Upright Exercise Bike
- Weight Capacity: 350 pounds
- 22” display screen
- Sync with Fitness Apps
- SMR Silent Magnetic Resistance
Do you want to connect live to your fitness coach? This is the best choice for you as it enables you to connect live to your coach or friends for an interactive workout session. It consists of a 22-inch touchscreen that can enable that.
You get a 1-year free membership to gain access to the global interactive trainer and workout programs after purchasing this exercise bike and the personal training is powered by iFit.
NordicTrack Commercial Studio Cycle is one of the best upright exercise bikes as its maximum weight is 350 pounds making it strong enough for both heavy and petite users. The seat is well-padded and firm, sturdy in construction, and can be adjusted to accommodate more users of different heights.
Another advantage is every buyer gets 10- years warranty on the frame, 2 years warranty on parts, and a 1-year labor warranty. This is a great buying assurance program. It is one of the best exercise bikes effective for arthritic knees and other bad knee problems.
- Style: Recumbent Exercise Bike
- Max Weight Capacity: 300 pounds
- LCD console with backlight
- The seat and backrest are padded with foam
- In-built fan
- High inertia perimeter weighted flywheel
Looking for a recumbent exercise bike with many inbuilt programs and fun features like an in-built fan, backlight, and 29 programs, 9 heart rate controls, 2 fitness tests, and 4 customs? This will be a good choice for you. It also has 1 quick start on its power console control panel, all to make your workout interesting, challenging, and effective.
Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike is among the exercise bike which makes use of Bluetooth connectivity allowing you to join Schwinn Trainer App and other related fitness apps. It also has an LCD console with backlights, external light is not necessary to read your workout data in a dark place.
It also has an in-built speaker for your MP3 player, a USB port to charge, 25-levels of resistance to adjust the intensity of the workout. All of these are to ensure your comfort, challenge your workout, and ultimately improve your fitness without putting strains on the bad knees.
- Style: Upright Stationary Exercise Bike
- Weight Capacity: 220 pounds
- Folded Dimensions (Unfolded): 19” L x 17.5” W x 53” H (32” L X 17.5” W X 46” H)
- 8-magnetic resistance level
- Adjustable cushioned seat.
ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike is an upright stationary exercise bike with 220 pounds weight capacity, and also comes with an LCD screen that is easy to read. It displays the time, speed, distance, pulse, and scan, and calories burned.
It is structured in such a way that it can be folded and unfolded. The cushioned seat can be adjusted to suit the differences in heights of many users. Its large pedals consist of safety straps, this put your feet firmly in place during the workout sessions.
You can adjust the 8 magnetic resistance levels to your preference and you can move from easy level to difficult level during your workout by simply adjusting its resistance knob. It is also accompanied by a balanced flywheel and V-belt drive. This bike has a structure that makes it easy to get on and off it, thereby making it a good choice for folks with knee problems.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are exercise bikes good for bad knees?
Cycling is one of the best to exercise your knee and riding on a stationary exercise bike which is a low-impact cardio machine can more rewarding. You will be less prone to complicating the already sustained injury and deteriorating knees.
By exercising the knees, you also strengthen them thereby reducing knee pains resulting from injury or degenerative diseases. We, however, advise you to seek medical advice to know if cycling will be a good fit for your specific knee conditions
Which is the best stationary bike for bad knees? Upright vs. Recumbent Bike
Selecting the best exercise bike for arthritic knees may have little or nothing to do with the style of the bike. Though, upright and semi-recumbent bikes are considered to be a good fit. However, some recumbent bikes are also good but you must consider the clearance and be sure it will be easy to get on and off it without straining your knees.
Is a stationary bike good for arthritic knees?
As stated above, cycling is great for your weak knees when done at the right intensity and previous studies have shown that it reduces knee joint pain. It is also a proven fact that people with arthritis get better when they exercise the knee joints.
Why do my knees hurt after a stationary bike?
There are many reasons your knee joints may hurt and they include:
- Unfit stationary bike (especially the height recommendation with inseam length)
- Over-exercising can also be a problem.
What exercise to avoid knee pain?
Arthritis in the knee can be painful and some exercises can worsen this pain. Here is a guide that explains some exercises to avoid if you have arthritis and some other knee problems.
What is the best exercise for arthritic knees?
There are other exercises that can benefit arthritis and other knee problems. These exercises include:
- hamstring stretch
- leg stretch
- half squat
What exercise equipment is good for bad knees?
Low-impact exercise machines are generally great for people with bad knees. Therefore, apart from stationary bikes, we will also recommend you consider exercise equipment like:
- Elliptical Machine
Because the stationary exercise bike is great for people dealing with knee problems to stay fit, therefore, we decided to review the best exercise bike for bad knees and arthritis.
We understand that the best can be subjective, especially as people deal with other conditions. For example, a person with back and knee pain will most likely find the recumbent bike to be the best fit.
However, we have reviewed different exercise bikes in each category and very optimistic they will give good values for the money. They are selected based on their effectiveness, suitability to knee problems, and great buyers’ feedback.