Last updated: 17/10/2022

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Welcome to our big bike trainer test 2023. Here we present all the bike trainers that we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and also added a summary of customer reviews on the web.

We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best bike trainer for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should pay attention to if you want to buy a bike trainer.


  • With a bike trainer, you simulate cycling in your own four walls. You can train your endurance and strengthen your cardiovascular system from the comfort of your own home.
  • Basically, you can distinguish between exercise bikes, ergometers and indoor cycles. These differ roughly in their use and functions.
  • While exercise bikes and indoor cycles are often found in private households, high-tech ergometers are used for medical purposes and targeted professional training.

The Best Bike Trainer: Our Choices

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a bike trainer

What is a bike trainer?

A bike trainer is a fitness device that simulates cycling as a form of exercise. It is similar in design to a bicycle, which usually has a saddle, pedals and hand grips.

Bike trainers belong to the category of exercise bikes. This means that you can usually find them in gyms or in private home environments. Since the training takes place indoors, you can cycle all year round and regardless of the weather

Bike trainers allow you to exercise indoors at any time, regardless of the weather. You can either buy a bike trainer or take advantage of what the gym has to offer. (Image source: / Humphrey Muleba)

First and foremost, bike trainer aim to increase your endurance capacity, that is, to train both your cardiovascular system and your muscles.

How does a bike trainer work?

Visually, they look almost like bicycles, but they lack two tyres. That’s logical, because riding a bike is only simulated. Bike trainer basically work in a very simple way.

When you step on the two pedals, you drive a flywheel that contains a brake. This brake generates pedalling resistance that corresponds to the different load levels. If the pedalling resistance is higher, you feel like you are going uphill. If the pedalling resistance is lighter, it feels like you are going downhill.

The braking behaviour can be adjusted on the bike trainer so that you can ride on different inclines. This provides more variety and an increased training effect.

Most bike trainers have a bike or training computer on the handlebars that shows you your training performance. In addition to data on your training duration, resistance level or distance, other parameters such as your heart rate or calorie consumption can be calculated.

What are the alternatives to a bike trainer?

In addition to bike trainer, there are a variety of alternatives that you can use for yourself and your training.

They all come under the umbrella term exercise bike and each simulates a different form of exercise. Here we have provided you with an overview of the different alternatives.

Cross trainer or elliptical trainer

This is a running machine that simulates walking, jogging or skiing, depending on the model.

While standing in an upright position, you perform sequences of steps. In contrast to sitting on a bike trainer, you use the entire musculature of your body.


Here you simulate climbing stairs. Especially the muscle groups thighs and buttocks are used.

However, compared to the other exercise bikes, the stepper does not train your endurance as much.


The treadmill is driven by an electronic motor, so you can walk or jog on it. You can adjust the speed individually.

When does it make sense to buy a bike trainer?

Basically, it makes sense for you to buy a bike trainer if you want to exercise in your own home.

Furthermore, you should consider what demands you have on your training at home and whether the bike trainer meets these demands. The needs can be very different. The following points can help you. The purchase of a bike trainer makes sense if

  • you want to train undisturbed, independent of time, place and weather,
  • you want to improve your general fitness and health,
  • you want to improve your endurance,
  • you want to reduce your body weight,
  • you want to build muscles,
  • you want to strengthen your cardiovascular system,
  • you want to do specific rehabilitation sports.

Please note that if you have acute health problems, e.g. heart disease or injuries, it is essential that you consult your doctor before using the bike trainer.

The doctor can best assess whether and how intensive the use of the bike trainer is suitable for you.

In general, bike trainer are suitable for everyone, young people and seniors alike. The only thing you should be sure of before buying is that you will really use it regularly. It should not gather dust in your home.

What are the uses of a bike trainer?

Recreational and competitive sports

Many people lack the motivation to go to the gym to do sports. Or the weather doesn’t cooperate and running or cycling is not possible outdoors.

In the leisure sector, the bike trainer is therefore often used at home to exercise. With the bike trainer, you can maintain and improve your fitness level completely independently of environmental influences.

The bike trainer is also regularly used by competitive athletes. Technically well-equipped bike trainer serve as a supplement or alternative to their actual training. In this way, endurance athletes in particular can also work on their performance in winter.

They also serve as a testing device to check the athlete’s ability to cope with stress. Training recommendations for the athletes can be derived from the results obtained.

Bike trainer are often used in the medical field. Particularly in physiotherapy or rehabilitation, they help people to work on their main points of focus in a controlled way. (Image source: / DokaRyan)

Medical field

The bike trainer is also popular in the medical field for ergometry. The devices are technically equipped to measure body functions.

For example, values from different points in time are compared to better predict and treat the course of diseases such as cardiovascular diseases or other heart disorders. Bike trainers are also used to measure the lung volume of asthma patients.

In rehabilitation and physiotherapy, physical illnesses are often supported with bike trainers in order to support controlled training in building up the patient’s muscles. The use of bike trainers is also suitable for warming up and warming down before and after physiotherapy exercises.

Which bike trainer are suitable for beginners or seniors?

Apart from the indoor cycle, which we will come back to later, all bike trainer are generally suitable for both beginners and seniors.

For beginners, a simple entry-level model is usually enough. If you need more functions for your training session and want to record more training data, it is better to go straight for a slightly higher-priced model with more features.

Exercise bikes are also suitable for seniors. When buying a bike trainer, older people should make sure that it is easy to use.

Furthermore, an ergonomic design of the bike trainer could be useful for older people with limited mobility. For example, some bike trainers have backrests for people who have back problems.

How much does a bike trainer cost?

The price range for bike trainers is very wide. Depending on the manufacturer, model and range of functions, bike trainer range from simple beginner models to high-tech devices with all kinds of functions. The low-priced versions start at about 100 euros, while the professional bike trainers sometimes go well into the four-digit range.

In the entry-level models, the functions are kept very simple and a long lifespan of the devices is not always guaranteed. The mid-range bike trainer, on the other hand, offer a very wide selection with a good price-performance ratio.

Here you will find a good mix of quality and fair price. The high-tech machines are usually found in medical facilities or with top athletes. These are technically the best equipped and are priced well above several thousand euros.

For private use, you will certainly find them in the first two price categories.

Decision: What types of bike trainer are there and which is the right one for you?

Sports equipment is standardised in Europe. Exercise bikes belong to the EN-957-1 standard, which distinguishes between six different types of fitness equipment. Bike trainers can be found in group 5.

In this group, a further differentiation is made between three further classes from A to C. At this point, the different types are separated. At this point, the different types of bike trainers separate.

Basically, you can choose between three different types of bike trainers:

  • Bicycle ergometer
  • Bicycle ergometer
  • Indoor cycle

The use and functions of the different bike trainers each have advantages and disadvantages. Depending on which functions are relevant for your person, one or the other type is suitable for you. In the following section we want to help you make your choice.

What are the features of an exercise bike and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Exercise bikes are the most commonly used exercise bikes on the market. This is mainly because they are wonderfully suitable for everyone.

They are a good piece of fitness equipment for any recreational athlete who wants to exercise in the comfort of their own home. Especially if you have otherwise found it difficult to motivate yourself to exercise, the cycle trainer home gym is a super beginner’s device for exercising comfortably and in a way that is easy on your joints. In addition to your endurance, it also trains the muscles of your lower body.

The machines are easy to use, which is especially convenient for beginners and seniors. Most exercise bikes have a screen on which you can adjust your training settings and track your training values. Your performance is usually displayed with the help of load levels. M

you can also expect measurements of your calorie consumption, heart rate or distance travelled. However, it is not common for exercise bikes to calculate your workload in terms of watts.

It is important to remember that the braking system of the exercise bike usually uses an electric magnetic brake. Since the resistance is generated electrically, there is a constant whirring noise.

  • Easy to use
  • Inexpensive purchase
  • Endurance training that is easy on the joints
  • Suitable for everyone in the recreational sports sector
  • No watt display
  • Relatively loud noise
  • No strain on the muscles in the upper body
  • Less suitable for medical and professional sports

High-quality cycle trainer home trainers whose power is not measured in watts belong to subclass B. The standard requires an adjustable brake system. The standard requires adjustable braking power, freewheel and a minimum flywheel mass of 5kg. All other bicycle exercise bikes that do not meet these standards are classified as subclass C.

What distinguishes a bicycle ergometer and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

At first glance, it is hard to distinguish between an exercise bike and a bicycle ergometer. Often the two terms are used interchangeably, causing confusion. However, there are differences that you need to consider when making your purchase.

The bicycle ergometer is classified as subclass A in the European standard. This requires that the power is measured in watts so that the user’s training load can be controlled more precisely.

Furthermore, the watt load must be continuously adjustable and the display must maintain a certain accuracy. These specifications are necessary in order to be able to use the bicycle ergometer in medical and professional sports.

If you decide to buy a bicycle ergometer, pay attention to the maximum wattage of the device. Some machines are limited in the amount of wattage they can handle, which may not be enough for you.

Furthermore, the bicycle ergometer is able to adjust the resistance either to the pedalling speed or also to the heart rate. This ensures that the cycling performance can be carried out evenly.

Since most bicycle ergometers also use an electric magnetic brake, the buzzing sound also occurs here when riding.

  • Precise watt display
  • Targeted, individual training possible
  • Endurance training that is easy on the joints
  • Suitable for medical and professional sports
  • Higher priced
  • Relatively loud noise
  • No strain on the muscles in the upper body

What distinguishes an indoor cycle and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Among bike trainer, the indoor cycle is the closest to the bicycle.

Its construction is simpler than that of its competitors. They are very stable, hardly wobble at all and run very smoothly. The saddle and handlebars can also be adjusted individually and very precisely.

Unlike the other two types, the resistance on indoor cycles is generated mechanically. They have a belt drive and a Fitz brake.

The brake block acts on the flywheel, so there is hardly any noise. The resistance can only be adjusted manually, so a watt display is not possible.

The indoor cycle is ideal if you want to work out without too many frills and just want to pedal. You can vary your riding position between sitting and standing. Even hands-free riding is common.

  • Stable and smooth running
  • Almost noiseless
  • Precise adjustment of saddle and handlebars
  • No maintenance required
  • No watt display
  • No adjustment options
  • Less suitable for beginners and seniors

Buying criteria: You can use these factors to compare and evaluate bike trainer

In the following, we will show you which aspects will help you decide between the many possible bike trainers.

The criteria you can use to compare bike trainers include:

  • Flywheel mass
  • Braking system
  • Speed dependence vs. speed independence
  • Maximum weight load and stability
  • Pedals and pedal unit
  • Power and resistance settings
  • Heart rate measurement and control
  • Saddle and handlebar adjustment
  • Bike trainer screen
  • Number of training programmes
  • Size and design

In the following paragraphs, we will explain what is important in the individual criteria.

When buying a bike trainer for your home, you should pay attention to the functions of your desired device so that you can make your training as effective as possible. (Image source: / Erlend Ekseth)

The flywheel mass

When simulating cycling, the flywheel mass is of great importance. The lower the flywheel mass, the more uncomfortable pedalling is felt. Therefore, it is advisable to pay attention to the highest possible flywheel mass.

The higher the flywheel mass, the more real the feeling of cycling and the smoother and more rounded the pedalling. This guarantees that your training is easy on your joints.

The flywheel mass also defines the final weight that is applied to the pedals. Professional athletes therefore look for a very high flywheel mass, often over 15kg. The rule of thumb is that the flywheel mass for a bike trainer should be at least 5kg. A flywheel mass between 8-14kg is recommended for recreational use.

Please note that manufacturers may calculate their flywheel mass differently. This can make comparison between different manufacturers somewhat difficult.

The braking system

Basically, modern bike trainers are equipped with either electronic magnetic brakes or electromagnetic induction brakes.

Both braking systems allow the resistance to be changed directly via the bike trainer’s screen. This makes training programmes with dynamic changes in resistance feasible.

With the electronic magnetic brake, the flywheel mass is permanently braked to a greater or lesser extent by means of a magnet. The closer the magnet gets to the flywheel, the higher the resistance. However, the magnet never comes into contact with the wheel. This prevents the brakes from wearing out.

In contrast, the electromagnetic induction brake regulates the resistance by means of current and voltage. An electric coil generates a magnetic field, which slows down the flywheel and produces resistance.

Wear is also not to be expected with this brake system. A big plus is the finer resistance adjustment and the higher maximum resistance compared to magnetic brakes. This is why induction brakes are usually found on higher priced bike trainers.

Speed dependence vs. speed dependence

Speed-independent bike trainer work as follows: No matter how fast or slow you pedal, your power output remains the same. If you pedal slowly, the resistance increases automatically.

If you pedal faster, it decreases accordingly. The preset wattage always remains at the same level. This allows you to train constantly. The big plus is that your cardiovascular system and your muscles are continuously stressed and not jerkily or irregularly.

Speed-dependent bike trainers, on the other hand, work the other way round: the faster you pedal, the higher the wattage increases. The slower you pedal, the lower the wattage.

If you want to use a bike trainer for therapeutic training, make sure you choose a speed-independent bike trainer.

Maximum weight load and stability

For your own safety, take a quick look at the maximum allowable body weight before buying a cycle trainer.

Make sure that your bike trainer can support your own body weight. Most bike trainers have a maximum load of between 100kg and 150kg.

The stability of the bike trainer is also important. Often you can see directly from the construction whether and how robust the device is.

To avoid disappointment, it is best to find out from customer reviews whether the bike trainer meets your expectations. Trying it out, if you can, is also a good way to test its stability.

The pedals and pedal unit

One of the most important elements of a bike trainer is the pedals. When buying, make sure they are large enough and stable enough. Slip resistance and comfort are other selection criteria.

Power and resistance settings

Depending on whether you are looking at an exercise bike or a bicycle ergometer, the information on resistance levels or wattages is important.

For example, different bicycle ergometers offer maximum wattages from 250 to 600 watts. Depending on your fitness level, you may need more or less wattage. The higher the maximum wattage, the more room for improvement you have in your training.

A guideline for a normal person with an average fitness level is about 400 watts. Higher wattages are suitable for cyclists.

The different resistance levels of exercise bikes regulate the design of your training. The higher the number of resistance levels, the more individually and precisely you can control your body load and your training.

For example, if you have fewer resistance levels, you may reach the limits of the bike trainer’s performance too quickly. Furthermore, the jumps within the steps may be too big for you. However, if you only want to cycle loosely, they may still be enough for you.

Heart rate measurement and control

All bike trainer on the market now have a pulse measurement function. The pulse measurement provides information about your state of exertion during training. There are three different ways of measuring the heart rate:

  • Hand pulse sensors
  • Heart rate belt
  • Ear clip

In the following table we have shown you the advantages and disadvantages of the individual variants.

Type of measurement Advantages Disadvantages
Hand pulse sensors The sensors are already present on the handlebars of all bike trainer. Additional accessories are not necessary The sensors are not very accurate. The measurements should rather be interpreted as guide values. Furthermore, the hands must always be held on the handlebars.
Pulse belt The pulse is measured with the help of a chest belt. The values are sent to the bike trainer via radio. The results are very accurate. If there is no radio connection, the data can be read using a heart rate monitor The chest strap can be perceived as annoying on the body. Additional accessories are necessary.
Ear clip With this measurement, a clip is attached to the ear, which is connected to the bike trainer with the help of a cable. The measurements are very accurate the cable can be a nuisance during training as it restricts freedom of movement.

If heart rate measurement is very important to you, we recommend that you use a heart rate belt. These are the most reliable.

Adjusting the saddle and handlebars

Before buying, check whether the saddle and handlebars are adjustable. This feature is important so that you can adopt the correct body position when cycling. Poor sitting posture can lead to pain or more serious consequences.

The saddle is adjustable on all bike trainers, only the inclination is not given on all of them. The handlebars are also not adjustable on all models.

The screen on the bike trainer

The screen or bike computer is the most important element of the bike trainer. It displays your measured training data.

Make sure that it is easy to use, that it is the right size and that it displays the training data that is important to you. Factors such as heart rate, calories burned, distance and speed are now standard.

The number of training programmes

The number of predefined training programmes can be another purchase criterion for you. Many bike trainers offer preset training programmes that guide you through your training.

If you do not plan to follow your own individual training plans, you should choose a bike trainer with programmes. However, if you want to train individually anyway, you can disregard this point.

The size and design of the bike trainer

The size of the bike trainer also plays an important role. Especially if you have little space at home or if you just want to save space.

If you have very little space, you should pay attention to the foldability of the bike trainer. Some models have a folding mechanism so that you can easily put them away after use.

Note, however, that such devices usually have deficits in stability. However, if you have enough space, you may be able to disregard the folding mechanism and concentrate on the technical functions.

Furthermore, the design and material can be just as important for you. Of course, the bike trainer should be visually appealing enough for you to want to set it up at home. However, it is up to you how much weight you place on these points.

Facts worth knowing about bike trainer

Which muscles can I train with a bike trainer?

When training with a bike trainer, the lower body in particular is trained. The following muscle groups are addressed:

  • Front thigh muscles
  • Rear thigh muscles
  • Calf muscles
  • Shin muscles
  • Gluteal muscles
  • Hip muscles

If you also want to train the muscles of your upper body, other exercise bikes such as the cross trainer or elliptical trainer are more suitable.

How often and for how long should I exercise on a bike trainer?

The length and frequency of your workout depends on your goals. If you want to improve your endurance and strengthen your cardiovascular system, you might train 3 times a week for 30-60 minutes each time.

How often and for how long you should exercise depends on your goals and fitness level. Many gyms also offer guided training on a bike trainer. There are usually courses for everyone: from beginners to professionals. (Image source: / Trust “Tru” Katsande)

Depending on your fitness level and goals, you can always increase the frequency, length and intensity. However, as a beginner, make sure you don’t overdo it right away. It’s more about determining your fitness level.

Can I train on a bike trainer if I am pregnant?

Exercising on a cycle trainer can be a suitable workout for pregnant women. This is because endurance training is fall-proof and strengthens the cardiovascular system at the same time.

The training also helps to strengthen the leg muscles and the pelvic floor. This can, for example, prevent the formation of varicose veins or water retention.

When exercising on the bike trainer, make sure that you have a good and safe posture on the bike trainer. Adjust your saddle and handlebars accordingly.

It is important that pregnant women moderate their exercise to the aerobic zone. Exercise is usually not a problem during the first three months. After that, more caution is advised.

You should talk to your doctor about when you can start exercising. You should also listen to your physical well-being.

Are there virtual training programmes for bike trainer?

There are now various providers that make your cycling training at home much more varied.

So that you don’t have to stare at your wall all the time, there are training programmes that send you virtually into a landscape of your choice while cycling.

Some bike trainers can play this training software directly on the bike computer, other programmes you have to play via an external screen, for example your TV or laptop.

Many programmes also include playful elements. This way you can compete with other riders, compare your performance and improve it.

What accessories can I buy for my bike trainer?

There are many useful accessories that you can buy for your bike trainer. Here is a brief overview.

Multifunctional mat

A multifunctional mat not only protects your floor from scratches and damage, but also dampens the noise of the bike trainer. Furthermore, they are non-slip so that you can complete your training safely and stably. The padding on these mats means you can even use them for other exercises.

Chest strap

One of the most important parameters for your training is the display of your heart rate. Although most bike trainers are equipped with hand pulse sensors, the measurements are not very accurate. Some models have the option of using a chest strap and sending the values directly to the bike computer.

Saddle cover

If you spend some time on the bike trainer, a comfortable saddle is an advantage. Not all exercise bikes come with a soft saddle. Soft and comfortable saddle covers can help.

Additional holder and storage table

You can upgrade your bike trainer with a holder for your tablet or smartphone. Storage tables for your laptop or a bookend for books are also available.

Spare parts

You can buy spare parts for many elements, such as the pedals or the handlebars. Make sure that the spare parts come from the manufacturer.

How do I care for my bike trainer?

In order for your bike trainer to last as long as possible, regular maintenance and care is necessary.

For general care, wiping with a soft, damp cloth is quite sufficient. It is better to avoid aggressive cleaning agents to prevent damage to the material.

You can carry out most maintenance work on the bike trainer yourself: Regularly tighten the screws on the bike trainer. Clean the hand pulse sensors with a soft cloth after each training session. Regularly oil the seat post and handlebars.

What is the difference between a cycle trainer and a roller trainer?

A roller trainer is a training device that allows you to use your own bike. You fix the rear wheel of your bike in the roller trainer. The front wheel lies on the floor.

The roller trainer allows you to do your training at home with your own bike. It does not require an additional bike trainer. The roller is much more space-saving compared to the bike trainer. They are also usually cheaper.

How can I generate electricity with my bike trainer?

There are now clever minds that try to produce electricity while exercising on the exercise bike.

For example, a 62-year-old Indian is trying to produce energy for 24 hours for a household with his “Free Electric Bicycle” project, while you only have to cycle for 1 hour.

Image source: / kzenon