Difference Between Upright Stationary Bikes and Recumbent Bikes

upright stationary bike

Exercise bikes or stationary bikes have proven themselves to be very effective in helping people lose weight and stay healthy. It’s not surprising to see the surge in their popularity over the last few years. A lot of people flock to use this equipment in fitness gyms. Others even purchase one of their own.

There are different types of exercise bikes – the most popular among them are the upright stationary bikes and the recumbent bikes. While they seem to look and function the same, each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Choosing the right type of bike for you will rely heavily on your needs and your preferences.

This short guide will help you understand the different types of bikes before you decide to use one. By the end, you should be able to make a wiser decision when choosing which type to use in the gym or to purchase.

Bike Frame

Upright stationary bikes are very small and narrow. It looks like a regular bike without the wheels. The seat is positioned upright and the pedals are found right under the seat, so the rider will have to sit straight while using it. The handles are located near the rider, so you can hold on to it when you need more stability.

Recumbent bikes, on the other hand, have a bulkier frame and looks less like a regular bike. The pedals are placed in front of the seat, and the seat usually has a chairback where you can rest your back while working out. There are no handles, so your arms naturally rest on your sides.


Both of these exercise bike types are great equipment that could help you achieve your fitness goals. They are very effective for cardiovascular workouts and calorie-burning. However, recumbent bikes can give you a better glute workout than an upright exercise bike.


Upright stationary bikes can be less comfortable compared to recumbent bikes. Riders can develop pain in their lower back and the neck when sitting upright and pedaling for a long period of time. This is less likely to happen when you use recumbent bikes because of the reclined and more relaxed position you will have while pedaling.

Riders can also have sore wrists after riding upright stationary bikes because they have to grip the handles during the workout. This won’t happen with recumbent bikes because you don’t have to grip any handle and you won’t have to worry about falling off the bike at all.


Upright stationary bikes are less expensive than recumbent bikes because they require less material to manufacture.

The Bottomline

It is important to determine your needs and preferences before you hop on a stationary bike. Knowing the best type that could help you will show you great results faster. When choosing an exercise bike to purchase, make sure you find the best stationary bike available, so you can be sure that you are getting excellent value for your money.