Air bikes have infinite resistance and moveable handlebars, allowing you to burn calories efficiently. On the other hand, spin bikes are ideal for extended and precise workouts.
When it comes to an air bike vs spin bike comparison, which is better for weight loss? Let’s highlight their differences further to see which one suits you best.
Air Bike vs Spin Bike Features for Weight Loss
With so many options available, choosing the right stationary exercise bike for weight loss can be confusing.
To help you out, below is a table comparing both air bike and spin bike features that you should check and consider.
|Full-body workout potential
|Allow full-body HIIT workouts
|Allow precise HIIT workouts
Scroll down further for a more in-depth comparison.
1. Resistance settings
One way to burn more calories is to work out harder. If you prefer using an exercise bike to do this, you need to check its resistance system.
Air or assault bikes generate resistance based on your physical effort. That means you can pedal harder or faster, depending on your fitness level. And the harder you pedal, the higher the resistance.
With spin bikes, the resistance comes from magnetic force. When you adjust the resistance through the bike console, the magnets move closer or away from the flywheel, generating tension. In this case, you can keep a steady cycling pace while the machine adjusts the friction level.
Verdict: From here, we can see that air-resistance bicycles require more physical output from the rider. With proper technique and use, this feature can help users burn calories more efficiently. Experienced riders won’t be limited to fixed resistance settings either.
2. Full-body workout potential
Another key factor in burning calories is muscle engagement. If your exercise machine lets you target the upper and lower-body muscles in one go, the calories you burn increase. This effect has something to do with metabolism.
You see, full-body workouts activate more muscles. In turn, you burn calories, lose weight and develop muscle mass. A person with more muscles burns higher calories because muscle contraction during exercise requires more energy. These muscles continue to burn calories even at rest.
Spin bikes primarily target your leg muscles. The upper body typically plays a supportive role. But you can still target your upper body and do arm exercises on stationary bikes. On the other hand, air bikes have moveable handlebars, so you can activate your arm, shoulder and back muscles while pedalling.
Verdict: With more muscles involved in air cycling, you can burn lots of calories in one session. Full-body workouts ensure more balanced fitness outcomes.
Workout intensity also has a direct effect on the calories you burn. Specifically, Harvard Health Publishing noted that vigorous stationary cycling for 30 minutes burns more calories than moderate cycling.
With the variable resistance of both air and spin bikes, you can efficiently perform high-intensity interval training (HIIT) using either machine. HIIT allows you to perform short bursts of intense cycling followed by low-intensity active recovery.
On top of burning more calories within a short time, interval training also boosts your metabolism post-workout and helps with fat loss. It can also improve your endurance, aerobic capacity and heart health.
Verdict: While you can do HIIT with air and spin bikes for weight loss, a spin bike is better for this training. Its precise magnetic resistance system makes HIIT consistency and performance tracking easier. It is also quicker to switch resistance through its console than manually adjusting an air bike knob.
4. Workout options
I consider workout options as a crucial factor for successful weight loss. After all, losing weight takes time, and exercise variety helps in keeping you motivated. If you’ve chosen to use an assault air bike for weight loss, pedalling faster and harder is one of your options.
The other is to use the moveable handlebars for a full-body workout. You can also do HIIT. But that’s about it. Air cycling is straightforward, and most models do not have built-in programs.
Spin bikes are more advanced. Some models, like the NordicTrack Commercial S22i, have an incline/decline feature to spice up your usual cycling routine.
Aside from built-in workouts, spin bikes may also work with a compatible app for extensive exercise libraries. Also, connecting the spin bike to the Internet gives you regular updates and workout ideas.
Hybrid pedals are another excellent feature of spin bikes. With these, you can use clip-in shoes and cycle with better efficiency and foot stability.
Verdict: Losing weight needs hard work, consistency and perseverance. A more advanced spin bike can easily make your journey more fun and rewarding.
Air Bike vs Spin Bike: Other Differences
The air bike vs spin bike comparison is not limited to weight loss and calories burned. Both bike types have other features worth considering to make either more suitable to your needs.
- Footprint. Is your home gym spacious? In that case, you’ll have no problem with a bulky, heavy air bike. However, a more compact spin bike is better for small households and shared spaces.
- Noise. The spinning fan blades of an air bicycle can be loud and may not be for apartment dwellers. On the other hand, the sound that a spin bike makes is barely audible, thanks to its magnetic resistance and belt-driven system.
- Ease of use. The straightforward operation of an air bike makes it suitable for any user. Also, unlike spin types, fan bikes can work without electrical power or an Internet connection.
- Comfort. While air bikes are for intense workouts, their wide padded seats make the ride more comfortable. Spin bike seats are usually narrower to simulate road biking. Initially, they can be uncomfortable, especially if you don’t wear proper cycling shorts.
- Weight limit. Air bikes are typically more heavy-duty and solid with welded steel frames. This construction quality makes them heavy and hard to move around. However, it also means they can cater to heavy users. Lighter spin bikes usually have lower weight limits.
- Cost. The advanced features of a spin bike make it more expensive than most air bicycles.
Both air and spin bikes are ideal for weight loss. However, upon comparison, we can see that the choice between the two depends on you, the user.
Air bikes are best for those who prefer to lose weight through full-body workouts and short interval training sessions. These machines also suit heavier users or those who have ample gym space.
However, spin bikes are for you if you like quieter and longer workouts. These machines are also best for tech-savvy riders and people in shared spaces or apartments.
The main takeaway is to choose the bike that works best for you. Go for an exercise bike that you’ll enjoy using every day. After all, aside from a high-quality bike, you also need focus, motivation and consistency for weight loss success.
1. What is the best exercise bike for seniors?
Low-impact recumbent bikes are best for the elderly. These encourage the reclined position that does not strain their ankles, knees and hips. Also, more comfortable recumbent bike workouts help seniors burn calories and follow a regular exercise routine.
2. Should I get a cheap or expensive exercise bike?
Get an indoor bike that will give you a higher value for money. Match the bike with your exercise habits, preference and fitness goals to avoid paying for features you don’t need. Generally, mid-range bike models are the safest choice. These offer both longevity and performance without costing a lot.
- How to Work the Arms on Stationary Bikes (5 Ways) - 5 January 2024
- Should You Use a Treadmill Before or After Weight Training? - 4 January 2024
- 10 Low-Carb Rice Alternatives That Aid In Weight Loss - 13 December 2023