Training indoors on a bike is something that so many people rely on to get the mileage that they need. Maybe they are living in a climate that has a lot of weather issues, or they just are stuck with limited amounts of time.
Whatever the case is, a good indoor bike trainer can make a big difference. There are many different options out there, and people can buy different types of trainers that work the best for them.
Some are going to spend as little money as possible, but there are others out there who will be willing to invest as long as they have something that works for them.
Is there a trainer out there for every type of rider? With the file list below, a person should be able to find something that works for them specifically.
The first option is the cheapest and allows people to get something that is dependable and affordable right away. There is a wide range of options beyond that, but people who take riding seriously might need to invest in something a little more built for that specific type of ride.
These five are great options, but there are also tips people need to keep in mind so that they purchase what they need most.
You can also take a look at this article for the quietest bike trainers out there in case you’re living in an apartment or a setting where noise can become a factor!
1. BalanceFrom Bike Trainer
There are quite a few people who believe that this is the best, most economical choice for a solid indoor bike trainer. The exercise magnetic stand allows for easy training at all hours of the day, and people will be able to get what they need to do done.
The BalanceFrom Bike Trainer (Amazon) stand is capable of setting up on any surface, which is perfect for people who are constantly on the go. Not everyone wants to have a bike stand up and set up every single day, so throwing it up in a few seconds is the best way to go.
Everything is designed to be in and out, as there is a quick-release clamp and a number of other features that can make sure the people are not wasting any time during the setup. Less time wasted means that a person can get right to what they want to get accomplished.
Overall, there are eight resistance settings, which is good enough for the majority of people. There might be some who are training for something very intense, and they might not feel like they are getting the maximum type of push that they need. If that is the case, and that saying something a little more expensive is going to be the only way to get around that.
Overall, is a great option for people who are purchasing their first-ever bike trainer. It is going to work for the majority of people, and no one should be worried about spending an absorbent amount of money.
- Simple, effective trainer.
- Sets up anywhere.
- Very durable.
- A little noisier than other options out there.
- Resistant settings do not go too high for some.
2. Sportneer Bike Trainer Stand
Over the last few years, Sportneer (Amazon) has quietly developed one of the most highly rated bike trainers in the world today. It is a pretty simple setup overall, allowing people to get the workout in that they need virtually anywhere.
Its ability to stay very stable and help people always feel secure has been a huge selling point throughout time.
Like a lot of the bike stands out there, this one is pretty simple at first glance. It is built to handle more weight than most other options out there, which is positive if the person is trying to get exercise on a heavier bike while also being on the heavier side overall.
The setup process of putting the bike into the trainer is extremely easy. It is a matter of seconds before a person can have everything set up, and then they are ready to start working out. There are six total resistance settings, and things will be tweaked to work on different exercises as well.
It is not the quietest option out there, but it does a pretty good job of controlling sound overall. It has a seamless type of design that does cut down on sound, and is one of the reasons why people love what it brings to the table.
If there is any sound coming from the bike, it mostly comes down to the tread on the tires and how everything is rubbing up in that regard.
- Very stable ride.
- Cut down on silence with an improved seamless design.
- Easy to put in and release from the clamps.
- A little more expensive than other basic options.
- Limited resistance settings.
3. Alpcour Bike Trainer Stand
Alpcour (Amazon) has focused on perfecting their bike trainer stand over the years, and they believe that they have one of the best offerings right now.
By being able to effortlessly transition a standard bike into an indoor stationary bicycle, people can get around-the-clock training that they need so that they never feel like they are missing out.
Like a lot of premium options, this relies heavily on magnetic technology. The flywheel mechanism used by the company creates a certain amount of drag with a tire that simulates the cycling experience.
People can feel like they are getting the same type of work out that they get outside, and there is no wear and tear on the bike whatsoever.
Magnets are the only way to get around not having a ton of wear and tear on the bike that so many other trainers end up causing. The last thing a person wants to do is have to replace their bike because of something that is happening indoors.
These magnets also make sure that this ride is extremely quiet, as there are no additional sounds added to the mix. People can ride this in the same room as somebody who is sleeping, and it is not going to cause any type of disruption.
Alpcour understands that for a lot of people, they are trying to get a workout whenever they can. No one wants to be limited because of how noisy things can get.
The final positive selling feature of this bike trainer is that it is built for those who travel frequently. Some of these trainers can get a little bulky to carry around, but this one folds up and is easy to take just about anywhere.
People who are constantly traveling for one reason or another will love this aspect. It can easily be thrown into a trunk and moved around for as much versatility as possible.
Never hesitate to try something like this bike trainer and see what type of benefits a more expensive option can bring to the table.
Yes, it does get a bit on the expensive side, but those who take training seriously and do so almost every single day will benefit from all these positives.
- Very travel friendly.
- Magnetic technology keeps things extremely quiet.
- Stable ride throughout.
- Resistance options are slightly limited.
- A bit on the expensive side.
4. Saris CycleOps Fluid2 Indoor Bike Trainer
The price of the trainer jumps up a decent amount, but there is a reason why this has very high ratings online. Not only is it a very high-quality trainer that just feels like a more premium option overall, but it is compatible with the Swift app.
That allows people to do a lot of measurements so that they know exactly what type of training they are getting in, and it is perfect for those who want to stay locked in with everything.
The first thing they will notice when it is set up and ready to be used is just how quiet and efficient it works. The fluid resistance unit is really great at keeping things quiet and consistent during the entire ride.
There is a long, wide range of progressive resistance that allows people to really push it if they want to. It makes it very easy to transition to harder settings, which comes in handy especially for people who are trying to push their limits.
Compatibility is not an issue at all with the setup, as it takes all different types of bikes. People will commonly throw on many different types of bikes and not have to worry about making too many changes. It is one of the most versatile bike trainers out there as far as fitting different types are concerned.
Besides being costly, it is a bit difficult to put together and assemble at home initially. Some people would like to have a little more simplicity as far as building it is concerned, as some intricate pieces go into the making of this trainer in general.
Have a little bit of patience in the beginning, and will pay huge dividends later on.
- Compatible with the Zwift app.
- Very durable.
- Fits just about any type of bike out there.
- Somewhat challenging to assemble.
5. Saris CycleOps H2 with Zwift Direct Drive
The final trainer out there that makes sense for a lot of riders is the most expensive of them all, the Saris CycleOps H2 (Amazon). Sure, it is not going to be the perfect fit for those who just casually ride, but those who take it very seriously will think that it is not worth the investment.
It is one of the best overall trainers a person can find indoors and is going to last for an extremely long time as long as people do not abuse it.
With an instant connection to Zwift, people can turn training into a video game type of workout. There is a certain level of intensity a person can get up to with this trainer, and having the ability to work virtually with others certainly helps.
It keeps people motivated throughout the entire ride, and being part of the community certainly helps.
The attaching process is very simple, as every bike works with this direct drive trainer. It provides a very accurate type of riding that feels just the same as being outside.
By using the Rouvy riding app, a person can feel like they are riding outdoor courses while they are indoors as well.
The responsiveness of the resistance helps with this setup as well. So many people do not feel like they get that exact type of feeling that they want out of more inexpensive options out there. People want to try to do whatever they can to make sure that they are riding the way they want to.
Although it is a little bulkier than some of the other options out there, it is still pretty easy to set up and move out of the way when not in use.
Make sure that it is cared for properly, as it is a little more fragile despite being more expensive as well. It mostly comes down to having a lot of moving parts and having so many advanced technological parts to the puzzle.
With this trainer, people can be smarter about going about things. It can up the resistance as well, so people who are looking to really push the limits will have no problem with that.
So many people take riding extremely seriously, and some of the lower-level bike trainers out there do not allow people to push themselves to the limit they want.
No one has to worry about not getting a proper challenge out of this bike. It is built for even the most dedicated riders who want to see exactly what they can pull off.
- Connect with many different apps for the ultimate training experience.
- Very durable when used with any bike.
- Sleek, modern design.
- Very expensive and designed for consistent riders only.
- A little bulky.
Tips for shopping for a quality indoor bike trainer
There are so many different options out there that it can be overwhelming for people to get a bike trainer that works for them.
Just a simple look at the market shows that there are more options than ever, and when spending a decent amount of money, no one should ever skimp on quality.
At the other day, people have a set amount of money that they can spend on an indoor bike trainer. Not everyone wants to spend an extra thousand dollars on something that we use indoors, so getting the best of the best might not be a realistic option.
It does make sense to invest in something that will last a while, but there are certainly some informal options that can fit in different types of budgets.
Staying within a budget allows people to buy what they need, and focus on what they want to accomplish individually. Remember, most people are going to be using a bike trainer as a way to supplement training outside.
It does not make sense to blow a lot of the budget on something inside, when the ultimate goal is to get outside and make the most out of those trips.
Some people are looking for a lot of resistance so that they can get the training they need inside. While there are some out there that offer a little bit of resistance, generally speaking, the higher they go, the more expensive they become.
This is why it is important to understand if a person is looking for a bike trainer that is built for very heavy workouts, or something that is relatively laid-back.
So how much should a person look for with resistance? Anything over 1000 watts of power is considered pretty high end, but some people are training and in need of something that goes higher than that.
Make sure that whatever the case is as far as riding resistance is concerned, the trainer can provide the type of challenge someone wants.
There are so many advances with bike trainers these days, and that means that technology is always going to play a factor.
Most people are looking for something that is very modern, because they know that they are going to get something that will last a long time. They will come with a lot of bells and whistles, and having a smart attached to the trainer is definitely a plus.
At the same time, do not pay for something just because it sounds fancier. If a person just wants to grind out training and not worry about anything else, they do not have to pay for any of the extras.
In a lot of ways, people already have ways to measure some of the information that smart bike trainers will provide. There is no reason to have redundancy, as it just becomes a more expensive purchase.
It is usually not going to cause much of an issue at all, but bike compatibility does need to play a factor in shopping. For a standard set up, it is not going to be a problem, but think about any bikes that might have a feature that could get in the way.
As one example, a unique rear dropout area might require a different type of bike trainer. This can be a hassle, especially if a person purchases something online, and realize that it does not work.
If there are any questions about compatibility, try to see if the company offers any solutions online. It is always worth asking them as well, as they have likely talked about certain bikes in the past.
Daily Operation and Durability
Those invested in a bike trainer are likely going to use it pretty often. It needs to be able to hold up during daily use, and that means anything from not breaking down, to not making a lot of noise.
The noise factor definitely plays an issue in a lot of homes, as nobody wants to deal with something that is extremely loud.
A quieter bike trainer is likely going to be a little more expensive, but it is worth it in a busy household. As an example, if it is quiet enough, the bike trainer can be used at all hours of the day without causing any issues for anyone else. This allows for exercising throughout the day, without any worries whatsoever.
The final quality in a great bike trainer is understanding durability. Taking care of a bike trainer makes a lot of sense, but the quality of parts also matter.
Nobody wants to have their bike breakdown for any reason, and the bike trainer must be gentle with a bike itself to avoid any issues. All of the options above do a great job of protecting the bike, which is a huge positive.
Final Thoughts on Indoor Bike Trainers
Every single person who rides a bike prefers going outdoors and experiencing nature, but sometimes it is necessary to do training indoors.
When that is the case, an indoor trainer can be a great way to still stay on the bike a person enjoys, but doing so without having to deal with the elements.
The more people get into riding, the more essential it is to have a bike trainer of some sort at home. It is a little bit of a challenge to decide on which option seems like the best, but most people will get a lot of benefits out of having something they can rely on at home.