Not so long ago, I started using an exercise bike at home. I’d had it for some time, but somehow it was just sitting in my room. What a pity, right?!
So, one day I figured, why would I spend so much money on a gym membership when an exercise bike is so much cheaper in the long run? I tried it, and I was happy that I discovered it. It’s a time-saver, and it’s a great way to shed those extra few pounds at home!
I’ve prepared a short and simple guide for you guys, from which you’ll learn how to easily set it up in order to avoid potential injuries. It’s very important to adjust the bike into the correct position for your own body.
It took me some time to figure it out, but it will certainly improve the quality of your workouts. So, keep on reading to find out more about how to set it up and and enjoy it daily!
Step #1 – Pay Attention to the Saddle Height!
According to my experience, the saddle height is the first thing you want to adjust properly. In order to do so, you should consider your height and the length of your legs. As you stand next to the bike, the saddle height should be exactly the same as the height of your hip bone.
After you adjust this, climb onto the bike and place the heels on the bike pedals. Additionally, extend one foot to the bottom of your pedal stroke. With your heel on the pedal, your knee should bend slightly. If this is the case, your saddle height is perfect!
Now I’ll explain why it is important to have a proper saddle height. If the saddle is low, it will strain your knees. On the other hand, having a saddle that is set too high will lead to straining in the feet, ankles and hips.
Bottomline – don’t neglect the saddle height!
Step #2 – It’s Not Just the Saddle Height…
After adjusting the saddle height, I hopped on the bike and realized that I was not done yet. The next thing to take into consideration is the saddle position.
The position can be altered by moving it forward or backward. The optimal position depends on your height and flexibility. However, you shouldn’t forget your riding style, as it will have some impact on the saddle position, too.
You will reach the perfect position when you sit on the bike, and your knees come slightly over the center of your foot. However, the knees shouldn’t go past the middle of your shoelaces.
What might happen if you don’t position the saddle correctly is that you strain your knees and lower back, if the saddle is too far back. On the other hand, if it’s too far forward, it could lead to an uncomfortable torso position and the loss of riding efficiency.
Step #3 – Next Stop: Handlebars!
This one will be tricky, guys. The reason for this is because it will depend on your preferred riding style. Also, your style might evolve in time, so positioning your handlebars might vary.
What you shouldn’t forget, though, is the fact that handlebars that are positioned too low might lead to discomfort in your lower back and/or tension in the neck and shoulder area.
As I mentioned earlier, you might need to play around a little in order to discover the optimal handlebar position. However, the ideal position should allow you to ride comfortably, without tension or discomfort in any way.
My tip here would be to keep a slight bend in your elbows. Also, as you ride, try to keep the weight off of the handlebars and instead push through your legs and heels.
Step #4 – Don’t Worry, We’re Almost Done – the Pedal Position!
At last, we’ve come to the pedals. This is the last thing that needs adjustment before starting to enjoy your exercise bike to the fullest. When it comes to the pedals, it’s extremely important to maintain a healthy foot position at all times.
You should always ride with the ball of your foot placed over the center of the pedal. Also, try to keep your toes light and even your heel with the ball of your foot.
It’s important not to point the toes down during the pedal stroke in order to avoid the numbness and discomfort in the ankles and knees. I would recommend wiggling your toes from time to time as you ride, to make sure you’re not pointing them down.
Hopefully, you’ll find my tips helpful, and you’ll install and adjust your home exercise bike easily. Now you know that “one size fits all” is not something that works with these bikes. You’ll see how the right adjustments will lead to improvement in your riding efficiency and greater results!