Stationary bikes are probably the first thing you think of when it comes to low-impact cardio, but what’s the difference between an upright bike and a recumbent bike? Is one better than the other? Let’s take a look.

Upright exercise bikes are like a standard road bike, where the pedals are below your center of gravity and you can lean over the handlebars.

Recumbent exercise bikes feature a more natural seated position with the pedals in front of you, making your body feel more stable and comfortable on the machine.

Upright Bike Benefits

A great option for those training for a race or looking for a whole-body workout, upright exercise bikes engage more muscles and more accurately mimic an outdoor riding experience such as riding up and down hills.

Other upright bike benefits:

  • Works the core/abdominal muscles by holding your body upright
  • Engages the biceps, triceps, and shoulder muscles when supporting your weight on the handlebars
  • More muscles engaged means more calories burned

The downside of upright bikes:

  • The position of the pedals (under your body) combined with the cyclical motion is harder on the knees and ankles.
  • An uncomfortable seat that hurts your tailbone
  • Using extra energy to hold your body upright leads to quicker burnout and muscle fatigue
  • Hunching over the handlebars encourages poor posture and adds extra stress on the back
  • Less support and more difficult for some people to find their balance on the bike

Recumbent Bike Benefits

Recumbent bikes are a popular choice for those who are new to working out, recovering from an injury, suffer from back and joint pain or want to multi-task while exercising (such as read a book or scroll through Facebook).

Other recumbent bike benefits:

  • Easier on the joints, making cardio less painful
  • A comfortable seat which encourages longer workouts
  • The position of the pedals and seat encourages better posture and places less stress on the back
  • Eliminates the risk of falling off the bike and sustaining an injury
  • Safe and easy for people of all ability levels

Downsides of a recumbent bike:

  • Doesn’t engage the core or arm muscles
  • Burns fewer calories
  • The cyclical pedal motion can still cause knee shear

Which Machine to Choose?Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer

If you’re looking for a home cardio machine that offers the whole-body results of the upright bike with the comfort and stability of the recumbent bike – then the Teeter FreeStep™ is the perfect choice for you!

The Teeter FreeStep is a recumbent cross trainer that combines the appealing safety and stress-free features of recumbent bikes with the full body calorie-burning benefits of upright bikes.

With its unique Patented Stride Technology designed to eliminate ALL stress on the knees and joints, PLUS the synchronized handles that add an upper body workout into the mix, the FreeStep is the ideal cardio and strength training machine for people of all fitness levels.

Don’t just take our word for it – 3rd party studies show the FreeStep burns 17.4 % more calories per workout than standard recumbent bikes, and 93% of participants in a consumer survey said the FreeStep delivers LESS STRESS on the knees and back than other cardio options.

So if you want to get a total body workout that FEELS easier, PREVENTS burnout, REDUCES muscle fatigue, and ELIMINATES stress all while burning MORE calories, then order the FreeStep today!

Low ImpactUpper BodyLower BodyMuscle TargetingWhisper Quiet*Full Range of Motion
Upright Bike
Recumbent Bike
* “Whisper quiet” magnetic resistance is typically a premium feature in bikes – those with friction resistance are much noisier. FreeStep boasts super smooth and quiet magnetic resistance without the high price tag.

Watch the video below to see the FreeStep in Action!


The Most Effective Low-Impact Workout

Unlike other recumbent options, the Teeter FreeStep™ provides an effective full body workout by combining the upper and lower body into one impact-free motion that is easier on the joints than typical cardio machines - so you can get an amazing workout, without the pain.
Teeter does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. See additional information