The best mini exercise bikes to stay fit, no matter your fitness level

A mini exercise bike can give you a gentle and joint-friendly workout that you can do while watching TV or reading a book.

Mini exercise bikes

by Piper Huxley |
Updated on

Behold - our essential guide to the best mini exercise bikes to help you out, no matter your fitness level. Whether you want to get fit, recuperate after an injury, illness or operation, tone some muscles, or keep your blood pressure and cholesterol down, an exercise bike (of any kind) can help you achieve your fitness goals. There’s no need to be intimidated, though... Yours is here to take you through it, step-by-step. You'll be pedalling in no time.

Perhaps, you're wondering: are mini exercise bikes any good? If you haven’t got the space for a full-scale exercise bike, perhaps a mini machine would suit you best. After all, a mini exercise can be used under a desk while you’re working – like an under-desk treadmill, is easy enough to use whilst watching TV and a compact way to store away when not in use. One of these handy machines could be a fun (and non-intrusive) way to keep moving.

Best mini exercise bikes at a glance

Best mini exercise bike: AGM Mini Exercise Bike - Buy now on Amazon UK
Bestselling mini exercise bike: Opti Mini Exercise Bike - Buy now on Argos
Best motorised mini exercise bike: Reviber Mini Motorised Exercise Bike - Buy now on Argos
Best mini exercise bike to fit under desk: DeskCycle2 - Buy now on Amazon UK

But, if you’re not keen on braving the wild outdoors with a road bike, then an indoor alternative may be a good fit. In addition to working out your legs and glutes, you can also use the pedals with the arms to provide an efficient upper-body and core workout, too. Not only that, but they can help aid weight loss and tone muscle, and protect the bones, too. They’re easier on the joints, which is a plus.

There are quite a few mini exercise bikes to sift through, so we’ve done the hard work for you. We’ve listed some of the best below to suit an array of exercise needs, fitness levels and budgets.

Best Mini Exercise Bikes

Best mini exercise bike

As the number one best-selling mini exercise bike Amazon has in its "pedal exercisers" department, this AGM machine has a lot to offer, despite its low price tag. Perfect for physical therapy, and even those with limited mobility, this mini exercise bike pedal exerciser's settings are user-friendly and adjustable, and its digital LCD display shows calories burned, distance cycled, duration, and laps.

Customer Review: "Bought this to help my brother-in-law with his recovery from a stroke. It allows him to have some exercise on the days he doesn't have physiotherapy. He can sit in his chair but still get his circulation going. A good purchase."

Pros

  • Easy to assemble
  • Sturdy, adjustable bike
  • Non-slip mat included

Cons

  • Some trouble with pedal straps

Bestselling mini exercise bike

The Opti Mini exercise bike is Argos' bestselling mini bike. It has variable resistance controls, sturdy feet to keep it in place, and an LCD display that gives you all the essential stats. At around 3.5kg, it's lightweight enough to effortlessly move around, and it comes with a one-year guarantee.

Customer Review: "Have been doing up to two hours a day without realising it. It tells you speed, distance covered and calories burned. I've been eating more yet losing weight due to the calories I burn."

Pros

  • Manual resistance system
  • Compact but sturdy
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Batteries not included
  • Small display

Best easy-to-use mini exercise bike

After an injury or operation, patients are always advised to get some light exercise, but in the cold and wet British winter, this can be quite the feat. Other exercise machines like treadmills or full-sized bikes can be too much for someone recovering or dealing with pain, so a mini exercise machine, like this NRS Healthcare motorised pedal exerciser, is a great alternative. Providing a low-impact workout with adjustable resistance, it's the perfect way to start getting those muscles working and back in shape. Here is some pedal power, rain or shine.

Customer Review: "This is a very sturdy machine and worth paying those extra few pounds."

Pros

  • Folds away for storage
  • Clear, LCD display
  • Adjustable for needs

Cons

  • Does get hot

Best lightweight mini exercise bike

himaly Mini Exercise Bike Portable Home Pedal Exerciser
Price: $104.67

Although notorious for its superior cardio capabilities and as being one of the best ways to get and stay fit, not everyone is a fan of cycling or pedal exercise, but a smooth pedalling system, like the one on this portable home pedal exerciser by himaly on Amazon, can get even the most hesitant users to enjoy the activity.

Customer Review: "Well made and works well. The pedalling action is smooth and the resistance is noticeable and feels right — you are not pedalling into thin air!"

Pros

  • Multi-function LCD
  • Anti-slip design
  • Light and portable

Cons

  • Time is tricky to reset
  • Best for smaller individuals

Best motorised mini exercise bike

As a motorised piece of exercise equipment, this machine is ideal for elderly folks or those with limited mobility, as it can assist in getting the limbs moving while slowly increasing strength. It's easy enough to use when watching TV or reading a book, and it has automated timed programmes too.

Customer Review: "I purchased the Reviber mini exercise bike to help maintain movement in my knee joint and keep my muscles working since being stuck indoors; it has really helped my knee movement, preventing stiffness."

Pros

  • Handheld controller for ease of use
  • Best for maintaining fitness
  • Motorised for low impact on joints

Cons

  • No adjustable resistance

Best mini exercise bike to fit under desk

This mini exercise bike for office use has been specifically designed to effortlessly fit under a desk so you can kill two essential birds with one stone; work and exercise. The desk cycle has high-quality magnetic resistance and more than twice the power of other commercial mini pedal exercisers, hence its steeper price tag. Its smooth cycle doesn't strain the joints, and it's such a low noise, you can easily go unnoticed while using it in even the busiest office.

Customer Review: "The extra expense in getting a proper magnetic cycle is absolutely worth it," explains one happy shopper, and the underlying message in the many five-star reviews for this machine is that it is well worth the money.

Pros

  • Five function displays
  • Whisper quiet resistance
  • Eight resistance settings

Cons

  • The user manual is bad
  • Wear small shoes

Best folding mini exercise bike

Opti Folding Magnetic Exercise Bike Mini Exercise Bike
Price: £86 (was £129)

www.argos.co.uk

If you've read all about the benefits of mini exercise bikes and like the fact that they take up minimal space but still feel that you'd prefer something you can really grab onto, this mini folding bike might be the solution you've been looking for. Hop on it as you would a regular exercise bike, but it folds up to around the size of an ironing board for easy storage in a cupboard, behind the sofa, or under the bed when you're done with it.

Customer Review: "Very happy with this purchase. Reasonable price and a solid piece of equipment. Reasonably easy to set up. Good to ride, good computer functions to help you see how fast, far etc. Very quiet which is a bonus - easy to listen to music etc. whilst riding. Useful that it folds up."

Pros

  • Good value equipment
  • Easy to setup and use
  • Quiet and versatile

Cons

  • Timer is fiddly

FAQs

What is the difference between an exercise bike and a spin bike?

Despite the pedalling movement, there are quite a few key differences between these two. While both pieces of equipment are a great addition to your home or garage gym, it really depends on what your goals are.

Bryony Firth-Bernard, our fitness writer, lays out the differences between the two.

Looking for an intense workout? A spin bike can provide that with changeable resistance and positions. However, they are generally a little pricier, but the build quality is typically better.

Despite being a little cheaper, an exercise bike is still a great piece of kit, which is gentle on your joints and good at strengthening your lower body. They’re better for gentle workouts.

What are the benefits of an exercise bike workout?

There are many benefits in terms of our physical health, but did you know that exercise bikes can also benefit us mentally, too? In general, cycling increases our levels of dopamine and serotonin (our happy hormones), which helps reduce anxiety and stress. They can strengthen the body and mind.

With the help of Bryony, we’ve listed our favourite benefits of using an exercise bike:

Firstly, an exercise bike can strengthen your legs and muscles, providing some toning all over your body, not just your legs. This can be managed by ‘resistance’ on the bike. We suggest setting resistance on your bike at something manageable but still giving yourself a little challenge.

If you’re someone who suffers from joint pain, maybe an exercise bike could be for you. As they’re gentle on joints, it’s a good piece of equipment to continue being active on – if you have an injury. Though seemingly low impact, this workout actually can strengthen your joints, with little pressure.

Next, they can be good for weight loss. If you’re looking for a healthy and gentle way to lose some weight, this could be a good method. Even a 30-minute workout can provide results. But don’t tire yourself out – and do what’s right for you.

Getting your heart rate up is important and will strengthen your heart. Cycling - or any cardiovascular activity, will help oxygen flow throughout the body – which will help all of your organs, muscles, and your precious heart. It can even reduce the risks of cardiovascular disease.

It goes without saying that investing in a mini exercise bike is much safer than the road. If the road is too busy and scares you, this will be a good solution. Not only will you avoid British weather at its rainiest but motivating yourself will be much easier. You won’t have to go as far, after all.

Lastly, as mentioned before, getting an exercise bike can boost your mind. After all, exercise has wondrous effects on our mental health as it puts our stress hormone, cortisol, in its place. Though not for everyone, cycling has been proven to reduce depression and anxiety. All positive, here.

Any exercise bike workouts for beginners?

Bryony has written a great guide to exercise bike workouts for beginners, which includes mentions of weight loss and internal training. If you’re new to your mini exercise bike, remember to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity (and length of time) as you go. Don’t overdo it. We've nabbed her workout here for you:

The workout:

Aim to cycle for 25 to 35 minutes

Start by cycling for 5 to 10 minutes on a low intensity to warm up your muscles and prevent injury

Select a medium intensity and cycle for 5 minutes

Once that five minutes is up, switch to a higher intensity and cycle for 1 to 2 minutes

Alternate between cycling at medium intensity for 5 minutes and then a high intensity for 1 to 2 minutes three more times

Finish by cycling on a low intensity for 5 minutes to cool down

Piper Huxley is a Homes, Garden and Wellness Product Writer for Yours, an all-rounder who will write on anything from décor to wellness. When not scouring the net for the best home bargains, Piper is listening to a musical soundtrack and tending to her houseplants.

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