NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike Review

NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike Review
4.9 / 5 Reviewer

The stationary bike is perhaps everyone’s favourite treadmill alternative. Apart from being more compact and low impact, it can provide the same leg muscle and cardio benefits.

But what if we level up indoor bike rides by adding interactive classes, auto incline technology and upper-body exercise? Let’s get to know these innovative features more and say hello to the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike!

Overview of the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike

The Commercial S22i Studio Bike is among NordicTrack’s most modern workout bikes.

It comes with all the features you need, including multiple preset resistance levels, built-in speakers and a library of biking classes, for a cycling studio-like experience.

It is also one of the few exercise bikes with an auto incline and decline function.

For this review, I will be describing the best features of the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike in detail.

NordicTrack Australia also lent me a unit to give this bike a spin and see first-hand what makes it the cream of the crop. Lastly, I will be sharing my thoughts about their website, delivery and assembly service.

Best Product Features of the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike

Here are the reasons that make NordicTrack S22i Studio Bike a one-of-a-kind fitness machine.

Well-Thought-Out Construction and Design

The Commercial S22i Studio Bike showcases both serious engineering and impressive design. For instance, NordicTrack uses corrosion-resistant, commercial-grade steel for its base, posts and stabilisers.

The intersecting joints and shaft also have black plastic moulding as protection. Also, the frame, which can support up to 150kg user weight capacity, comes with a lifetime warranty.

Handlebars have a soft-grip material coating, while the pedals have adjustable toe cages that suit regular workout sneakers. The monitor also looks well incorporated into the bike design and not something haphazardly added at the last minute.

The NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike has long-lasting quality in mind. And outdoor cycling enthusiasts will quickly notice how much this machine resembles an actual road bike.

With its handlebars set lower than the bike seat, riders will have to lean forward rather than sit up while pedalling. It may be uncomfortable for some at first, but this form keeps your hamstring and glutes engaged.

13kg Flywheel and 24 Digital Resistance Levels

The excellence of any exercise machine depends on its performance. And the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike will surely not disappoint in this department.

Its 13kg inertia-enhanced flywheel, for example, ensures smooth and uniform pedalling. It also gives your feet complete control of the pedal by preventing jerky, downward movements.

There’s also a knob at the centre that you can press anytime to stop the flywheel. Another notable feature of the flywheel is its magnetic resistance.

This mechanism has several benefits like noise reduction, consistent performance and frictionless resistance to prevent wear on moving parts.

Most spin bikes have a tension knob for resistance adjustment. But with the S22i Studio Bike, its 24 resistance settings are digitally controlled and more specific.

This innovative feature makes it easier for riders to exercise with the same resistance level each time. You can also adjust it manually through the handlebar button or the touchscreen.

Automated Incline/Decline Function

A revolutionary feature of NordicTrack bikes is the motorised arm under the pedal. This unique functionality tilts the bike up and down to simulate outdoor riding.

And for the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike, users can enjoy these indoor hill climbs with its +20% incline and -10% decline.

This feature significantly increases exercise variety when combined with variable resistance levels and cycling speed. It surely takes standard indoor cycling up a notch!

In addition, the incline/decline function makes your workout more challenging. As your bike tilts, your body angle tries to compensate. In turn, you burn more calories and engage other muscles of your lower body.

Three Adjustable Points for Comfort

Like any exercise, proper cycling form is crucial in workout efficacy and injury prevention. And the S22i Studio Bike ensures this through its three-point adjustment system.

The first one is the adjustable seat, which you can move forward or back. Setting this should keep your knees aligned with your feet for comfortable pedalling.

The second point for adjustment is the saddle stem that you can move up or down. You can stand next to the bike and adjust it to your hip height. This position should protect you from unwanted knee tension during exercise.

Lastly, you can move the handlebars up or down to be about the same height as your saddle. And if you are an experienced rider, you can adjust the handlebar a bit lower but not so much as to restrict your diaphragm.

These adjustment points have orange measurement markings, so it’s easier for you and your fitness partner to share the bike.

Workout Diversity

You can also set your biking route by selecting any of the Google Map images on the app. Keep in mind that this option doesn’t have any audio, making it perfect for your favourite playlist to take centre stage. Or you can also play, a music station integrated in iFit. You will be able to choose the genre from EDM, Rock, Pop, Downtempo Yoga and more.

Aside from cycling workouts, iFit also offers combo classes where you can combine biking with weight exercises or plyometrics. There are off-the-bike classes like yoga, strength training and stretching, too.

The best part? You get a 30-day free iFit trial when you buy the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike! This trial includes family membership, allowing you to create five profiles.

You can still opt for manual mode and use the bike without its iFit app. But NordicTrack Australia also has a dedicated iFit page for subscription renewal to continue enjoying the app’s benefits.

Swivelling 22-Inch Touchscreen

Another thing that makes the Commercial S22i Studio Bike a standout is its large 22-in (or 56cm) touchscreen. You can easily adjust the display settings from the home screen to get your ideal resolution.

But that’s not all. You can move it from side to side or up and down for that perfect angle. This pivot feature can help avoid glare from overhead lights, too.

Also, it makes it easier to use the same monitor for performing off-the-bike workouts.

It has the iFit controls, too, which means you only need to figure out one screen to adjust the resistance, incline, volume and more.

Convenient Accessories

Like the NordicTrack Elliptical 9.9, the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike also has its share of little extras for convenient and comfortable cycling.

For instance, the workout fan below the screen ensures that you stay cool while working out.

You can manually adjust the fan direction, too. Alternatively, you can set it on auto mode to automatically adjust the airflow based on your cycling speed.

You can also use the handlebar tray for your phone and two storage cups for your water bottle.

On either side of the handlebar tray are two 1.4kg (3lb) dumbbells that you can use for weight exercises or combo classes. And in case you want to move the bike somewhere else, the front-mounted transport wheels should make the job easy.

Product Test Drive and Personal Experience

I’ve summarised its pros and cons in a table for a quick read, but feel free to scroll down further for a more in-depth explanation.

Pros and Cons

  • Large rotating touchscreen with a crisp display
  • Variable digital resistance levels
  • Incline/decline function for outdoor biking simulation
  • Solid and stable feel with a high user weight capacity
  • Compact machine for small spaces
  • Safe and clutter-free internal wiring
  • Beginner-friendly pedals
  • Smooth and quiet magnetic resistance flywheel
  • Adjustable seat and handlebar for proper form and comfort
  • Includes workout fan, handlebar tray, two dumbbells and dual water bottle holders
  • Easy-to-navigate NordicTrack Australia website
  • Efficient delivery and customer services
  • No on/off button
  • Lacks clip-in pedals for faster cycling
  • Time difference can be an issue with US-based live classes
  • Assembly can take time due to machine weight and multiple parts

It’s a beautiful bike with a simplistic yet functional design.

OK, this may sound biased as I’m a spin bike fan. But after seeing the fully assembled bike, I couldn’t help but gush about how beautifully made it was. And that monitor is big!

I was excited to try it and immediately blown away by how smooth my first ride was. The bike feels solid and stable throughout, too (despite the scary-looking trail I’ve tested!).

With the straightforward iFit program and the 22-in display, I found myself immersed in the workout in no time.

And despite its big screen, the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike has a small footprint, so it should fit in any home gym space. The bike was around 152cm tall and 142cm long, which is pretty much the same as the diagram from NordicTrack Australia.

It weighs around 95kg and doesn’t fold up, though. But the transport wheels make it easy to move around the house.

Also, most of the bike’s wires and cables are internal, except for the power cable at the back. I find this appealing as it eliminates clutter and potential safety risks.

One thing to note is that this bike has no on/off button. I had to switch it off by turning off the power source directly.

It may not be a big deal, but it is pretty unusual, considering that other NordicTrack machines I’ve tried had a dedicated power button.

Overall, it’s a sporty, powerful bike with a sleek black finish that can easily blend into your home interior.

The pedals are less intimidating for beginners.

I like that I don’t need to wear cleats for this bike, and my usual runners will do for every cycling session. Newbies won’t have to buy expensive clip-in shoes, either.

I tried this feature with the power incline and some live classes, and I was impressed. My quads were on fire, and I thoroughly enjoyed the outdoor biking feel.

It may not be such good news for hardcore riders, though. After all, clip-in cycling shoes make it easy to push and pull on the pedals, encouraging you to ride faster.

But you can always swap out the S22i stock pedals with a pair you can clip into for intense cycling and riding efficiency.

Alternatively, you can also consider the NordicTrack S22i Studio Bike 2022 model with hybrid SPD + toe clip pedals.

Another thing to note is that iFit’s live classes are from the United States. And in my case, the earliest live to get from Australia is 8 pm (Melbourne time). 

So, if you plan to join live morning classes, you probably have to forgo them and pick pre-loaded iFit workouts instead.

Cycling session is remarkably comfortable and quiet.

If you plan to share the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike with others at home, this machine is the best choice.

Its seat is easily adjustable to suit riders’ varying heights. However, if you’re new to spin bikes, I suggest wearing appropriate bike shorts to avoid discomfort.

The handlebar and console, which move together as a set, can also be adjusted to match your arm length.

The manual has all the details on how to make these adjustments. But there’s also a short video of it on iFit, which I think is easier to follow.

Another point that I find notable with this bike is its noise-free operation. The magnetic resistance system on the flywheel works like a charm. It doesn’t create any distracting sound when I’m pedalling or braking.

I tried the incline/decline function, too, and it was just as quiet and smooth. The motor does produce some noise, but it isn’t too loud. It’s similar to the sound treadmills make when adjusting their incline.

However, note that the bike’s speakers are at the back of the screen. The sound is good, but it might be distracting to others since the sound will project outwards.

In that case, consider positioning your bike in a corner where you can turn the sound down a bit.

The iFit program and a rotating screen make the perfect match.

Most of the functionality of the iFit is on the screen, so everything’s accessible while I’m on the saddle. The touchscreen is highly intuitive, too.

In my NordicTrack Elliptical 9.9 review, I’ve mentioned that doing iFit’s yoga workouts and strength training can be a problem with the machine’s small, fixed screen.

I even suggested that you need to download iFit into an external gadget, like a laptop or tablet, to enjoy this feature.

But the big movable screen of the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike solves this issue. You can now swivel the monitor and do your off-the-bike exercises using the same machine.

But keep in mind that you need to start paying for the monthly iFit subscription once your free 30-day trial membership ends.

You can still use the bike with manual workouts and limited iFit programs. But I think the iFit is key to getting the NordicTrack bike’s full benefits. Having a subscription renewal is worth the extra cost for sure.

The extra accessories add convenience.

The autobreeze workout fan is an excellent addition. With it, I can comfortably work out even during hot summer days.

Most exercise bikes include a water bottle holder, a small shelf tray and dumbbells. But I appreciate how NordicTrack positioned these add-ons to allow quick access.

For instance, the dual water bottle holders below the handlebars make it easier to stay hydrated. The tray is also conveniently in front, so you can quickly check your phone while pedalling.

I tried using the tray, too, by putting my small Samsung Z Flip phone. And I think it’s large enough to hold several other valuables like keys and maybe a small snack.

I also like that the dumbbell rack sits on either side of this storage tray. I’ve seen other bikes with dumbbells positioned at the back, making them difficult to grab and use.

But with NordicTrack, I can easily reach and pick up these weights while riding. It’s impressive how even small details like these are well-thought-out for users’ benefit.

And I have to say, the entire ordering, delivery and assembly process, which I’ll be discussing next, was equally impressive, too.

Where to Buy Online

You can purchase your Commercial S22i Studio Bike by accessing the NordicTrack Australia website. Start browsing the exercise machine categories on the page, then select the equipment you want.

When you click on exercise bikes, the site will take you to a page showing all the models under this category.

Here, you’ll see a brief description of commercial, recumbent and upright bikes to help you find the machine that matches your fitness goals. If you’re looking for an affordable model, the price is also conveniently under each model.

Click on the NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike to see a more detailed product page. This part comes with all the info you need, including payment options, feature description, specs and product measurements.

Try clicking on more product pages to compare and contrast other exercise bikes. Once you’ve decided, click add to cart to place your order.

Or, you can click the “Check Price” button below to view the most up-to-date price from the product page directly.

Customer Support

You can fill up their Request Consultation form if you need more information about the NordicTrack machines available in Australia. You can find it at the very bottom of every product description page.

Australian NordicTrack staff will email or call you at your most convenient time. The process is easy, quick and, best of all, free!

If you need faster replies, the website’s LiveChat box is the way to go. Agents may not be available for live chatting at certain times. But you can always leave a message here so they can get back to you ASAP.

Shipping, Delivery and Installation

I have to say, aside from top-notch exercise machines, NordicTrack Australia is commendable for its smooth-sailing ordering, delivery and assembly service.

In my case, it took exactly two weeks to process everything, which is accurate based on their website.

I was pleasantly surprised how fast it was, too, despite ordering three large exercise machines: NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike, NordicTrack Commercial 9.9 Elliptical and NordicTrack X22i Treadmill.

I also appreciate how the company constantly updated me about the status of my order.

About the Delivery and Installation

NordicTrack Australia works with Winning Services for its courier and installation services.

Two gentlemen from their company helped me with my equipment order, and both worked politely and professionally.

But before the actual delivery and installation, Winning Services also requested to see my apartment in Melbourne. It’s an extra step they do to ensure that delivery and installation will go smoothly.

I think it’s also a big time-saver considering that they need to set up these large pieces of equipment in my apartment.

About the Winning Services Staff

Both deliverymen followed health safety procedures and kept their masks on. They also laid out a protective mat for floor protection before removing the bike parts from the box.

They were meticulous during assembly and ensured everything was attached or aligned correctly.

Afterwards, they cleaned the place up, putting the plastics and Styrofoam into the cardboard boxes before loading them back in their truck.

Overall, I had a good experience with NordicTrack Australia and Winning Services. Customer service was two thumbs-up for sure.

About Setting Up the Exercise Bike Yourself

The assembled NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike is around 95kg. It is a little heavy, so you need at least one more handy family member or mate to help out.

The S22i Studio Bike comes partially assembled, and the manual has all the details you need to put it together. But then, you also need an adjustable wrench, Phillips screwdriver and rubber mallet to set it up.

If you are not used to setting up machines like this, assembly time will likely take longer than necessary. With Winning Services, it only took 30 minutes for the two gentlemen to have it up and ready.

So, if you want to save time and energy, I highly recommend having the professionals help you.

I had no problems with the Winning Services staff either. And I think it’s best to have the pros assemble complex machines to avoid accidents or errors.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a high-quality exercise machine, NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike is a great option.

With its extensive workout library and incline/decline function, it’s an ideal fitness partner for those into challenging exercise routines.

The most discerning gym-goer will surely be impressed with its quiet operation, convenient accessories and crisp display, too.

Yes, it is pricier than other exercise bikes. But no other exercise bike to date has the same long list of specs and features as the S22i.

The iFit app will not run out of new and exciting trails to try either. Also, this heavy-duty machine tops the list if you’re after frequent and long-term use.

Ready to start biking around the globe with your own NordicTrack Commercial S22i Studio Bike? Click the button below to check the most up to date price.