Among the many advantages of working out in the present day is that you do not need to sign up for an insanely expensive gym membership – you can easily get your fitness needs in the comfort of your home. There are many exercise machines that target different areas in your body, and their efficient design is part of the reason that makes them so popular with many.
Recumbent bikes are among these many machines, and they come in different designs and for different needs. In this article, we will focus on the best ones for short people, as well as outlining some of the things you need to look for when purchasing these bikes.
Here is a comparison table for the best recumbent bike for short legs
Dimensions (in inches)
No. of resistance levels
EXERPEUTIC 400XL folding bike
46 x 19 x 33
Sole R92 recumbent bike
57 x 30 x 50
Schwinn 270 recumbent bike
67 x 13 x 27
PROGEAR 555LXT magnetic bike
49 x 22 x 43
Sunny Health & Fitness Comfort XL bike
24 x 21.5 x 41.5
EXERPEUTIC 400XL 300SR folding bike – great for users with smaller budgets
This has many advantages that come with its use – not only does it meet all the expectations from a good recumbent bike, but it also has a fold-up option that makes it very easy to store and move around.
- Large seat with plenty of padding
- Adjustment of the seat to accommodate users between 5’2” and 6’2”
- Weight capacity of 300 lbs.
- Magnetic brake resistance, 8 resistance levels
- 6 programs available
- Includes transportation wheels
Thanks to the features like the padded seat, large pedals (straps included), side handlebars that are level with your hips and the full backrest, it is a safe choice that helps you remain comfortable and keeps good form as you use it.
The bike uses a magnetic tension system, which is in 8 levels. This allows you to change the intensity of your workouts as much or as little as you want. For a quiet, smooth ride, the v-belt drive system and the precision balanced flywheel make the experience as smooth as possible.
In addition, it also includes a health monitor that keeps track of your fitness progress through its easy-to-read LCD computer screen. This will display various aspects – pulse, calories burned, speed, time, distance, and it also has an odometer. The pulse sensors are also conveniently located, right on the handlebars, to increase the accuracy.
- Very compact design and easy to fold up and store
- It is the most practical option on the list
- Very affordable
- It might be too small for bigger people
- It does not have as much intense workouts in some cases
This model has plenty of great aspects about it, and its compact nature is a major bonus. It is a good addition to your home gym and will be a great option for someone on a smaller budget.
Sole R92 recumbent bike – best for large spaces
This is a great choice that happens to be among the most affordable picks, especially if you want a cardiovascular workout that is also low impact. The company is widely known due to its focus on biomechanics, and the bikes are designed to put as little stress on the joints and feet as much as possible.
- Zero levels of ECB resistance to give a smooth and quiet transition
- 10 pre-set programs
- Cooling fan
- 20-pound flywheel
- 12-position adjustable seat, and ergonomic design of inward cant to prevent sore feet and knees
There are 10 workout programs on the console. There are the classics you would see in most recumbent bikes, such as hill climb, heart rate control and user defined features. Everything is nicely displayed through a backlit LCD screen of 9 inches, which allows you to monitor relevant statistics quickly.
The design of the bike is quite good, featuring a steel frame, flywheel of 20 lbs., foam seat, and oversized pedals. If you have issues with your knees or joints, you will definitely appreciate the 2O inward design of the pedals, which will help you maintain correct body posture.
In addition, the seat is adjustable and padded, and the back support. You can adjust it according to your own preferences, and the built-in speakers and iPod dock will allow you to enjoy your favorite music without using a separate sound system.
The warranty is three years on the parts and electronics, as well as ten years on the frame, and it is a good deal for the price.
- The frame is very strong and durable
- Quiet operation
- The flywheel is heavy to support smooth operation
- Ergonomic pedals
- A variety of pre-installed programs and features
- Adjustable seat
- The bike is very large in size
- The integrated workout fans are not strong
This is a great bike if you have a home gym, especially a large one. However, it will not have the suitable intensity that an elite athlete may require, although it will work well for most trainees.
Schwinn 270 recumbent bike – our pick
This might be among the most expensive recumbent bikes on this list, but it certainly lives up to much of its reputation, thanks to the numerous features it comes with.
- Bluetooth connectivity, helps you sync with Schwinn apps for training and tracking progress
- 25 resistance levels
- 17 pounds flywheel
- Ability to sync with RideSocial smartphone app
- High inertia and high speed drive system
- 29 programs – 4 custom, 9 heart rate control, 12 profile, 1 quick start, 2 fitness test
- Perimeter weighted flywheel
- DualTrack LCD display, in-console speakers, media shelf, adjustable fan, USB media charging
This bike has a ton of useful features, most notable being the 29 preset workouts and 25 resistance levels that provide some extra variety when you need it.
You likely want to keep track of your heart rate as you work out, and the bike solves this need through the heart rate pulse grips that are on the seat grips. Even though it lacks a chest strap, the machine can still monitor the breathing rates due to the telemetry abilities it has. The seat itself is quite padded, which helps you stay comfortable throughout your workout, and there is plenty of back support that keeps you cool when you are exercising.
Even though the handlebars are not adjustable, you can change the console’s angle. The bike takes up quite a large footprint and is quite heavy though – it weighs 86.6 pounds and us 64 x 27.7 x 49.9 inches in dimensions (L, W. H).
Other convenience aspects are pedal straps to keep your feet firmly on the pedals, an accessory and large water bottle holder, sealed acoustic chamber speakers, Bluetooth connectivity, and a three-speed workout fan. In addition, you get a warranty period of 10 years on the frame, one year on electronics and two years on the mechanical parts.
- Strong construction
- Bluetooth connection and all other features are great
- 29 workout programs
- Easy adjustment of the resistance levels
- Comfortable seating
- Four user profiles, making it easy to use for the family
- High weight capacity
- The handlebars are not adjustable
- The flywheel is lightweight
- Some users might complain due to the brightness of the display
- Not for tall people
This is the best recumbent bike you can choose if you want multiple user profiles, and many people choose it due to the low-impact design. It is however best for you if you are a maximum height of 6 feet tall – anything more than that, and you will struggle to get the most benefits from it.
PROGEAR 555LXT Magnetic tension bike – strong seat support and adjustment
This is a reduced option for prostate bikes, which is a great choice if you are looking forward to saving money on space, even as you continue to do your cardio exercises at home.
- Computer LCD screen, wide enough to allow viewing of different metrics
- 3 computer goal settings of workouts – displays calorie burning rate, time and distance
- Step-thru design for easy use
- 14 levels of resistance, magnetic
- Weight capacity of 250 lbs.
- Height range of users from 5’0” to 6’3”
Compared to most other bikes, it is quite unique in design and approach. It has a slim slider under the bike instead of relying on strong seat support, which gives you a chance to slide the seat to your preferred position instead of being constrained to specific seat adjustments.
In addition, a decent-sized PC accompanies the system and allows for easy viewing of media and monitoring of your objectives. The outline of the bike is made from steel and is quite strong and durable, and the one-year guarantee is standard for its good quality.
The bike is suitable for people who are between the heights of 5’0” and 6’3”, and you can easily adjust to your preferences by changing the seat position.
The bike uses a magnetic resistance system that has 14 levels of resistance, and a pressure handle at the front part makes it easier to go back to your original setting in case you change it in the course of use. Regarding the drive type, it uses a belt system and a single wrench, which ensures the motion is smooth and tranquil, while the brakes have plastic finishing to give you decent grip levels.
- Easy to assemble, as some of the parts come pre-assembled
- Very quiet mechanism
- The support is exceptional
- Lightweight and easy to move around
- Very strong levels of support
- The tension level on the lowest and highest settings result in motion that is not smooth
This is a great choice for all ages and experience levels, but more so if you are over the age of 40 or 50 and are struggling to keep in shape. It is also quite easy to set up and move around, making it convenient for use in the home.
Sunny Health & Fitness Comfort XL folding exercise bike – great comfort option
This is a great passage level bike3 that features interesting aspects in its moderateness and supine seating arrangement. There are additional features that make it quite attractive, such as those we will highlight below.
- Belt drive that supports up to 10 magnetic resistance levels
- XL padded seat for maximum comfort includes a water bottle holder
- Performance monitor
- Bike is fully adjustable by 3 levels
- Adjustable strap pedals to promote balance, foam coating on handles to support stability
- Max weight 300 lbs., flywheel weight 3lbs
- Dimensions 18L x 21W x 54H inches
The design of the bike takes on a semi-recumbent outlook with a lightweight and minimized approach. The gauge is about 17kg (38lbs.), and you can fold the parts easily and store it without any issues. This makes it land on the list of the best collapsing bikes available in the market.
Since it has a belt-drive mechanism, it will give you plenty of solace even as you pursue your objectives of staying fit, and works well for small apartments as well or if you want to do your cycling while you have sleeping neighbors or family in the home. There are also plenty of useful highlights without the diminishing of the benefits it offers.
The size of the bike does not occupy too much space, and this also makes its portability fairly straightforward. It is also quite lightweight, weighing 38 lbs., and has two stabilizing bars that help you stay comfortable while doing your exercise routines.
The padding is also quite good – featuring extra sized padding, it is more than enough to suit your butt and will allow you to use it for extended periods without feeling exhausted. The arm bars on each side of the seat are also movable and will give you extra help to pedal harder and faster effortlessly.
- The mechanism is very quiet
- It is easy to use and adjust the positions
- Lightweight and portable, easy to store
- The counter for calories burnt is off the actual measurements
This is a good purchase and will work if you are not using it for very intense cardio exercises, instead as a supplement for your fitness regime.
What should you look for in recumbent bikes for short people?
What are recumbent bikes?
Before looking at the criteria of choosing these bikes, it is best to understand what recumbent bikes are. They are machines that are unlike other exercise bikes, due to their approach – they aim to strengthen your leg muscles while remaining low impact to reduce the risk of injuries.
How do they do this though? The answer is quite simple – their design is the key. The arrangement of the bike allows you to recline backward, and this makes a major difference in your performance by eliminating discomfort and engaging your leg muscles more.
What should you consider?
With this in mind, here are a few things to keep in mind when buying these recumbent bikes:
The main reason why recumbent bikes are highly popular is because of their seats – they have some of the most comfortable seating aspects compared to other exercise bikes. This is better from most spin bikes that are highly uncomfortable, or the traditional upright bikes which are not any better.
When checking recumbent bikes, make sure to check the seat height and that it is easy to adjust. Some of the high-end bikes will allow you to adjust the reclining angle or do other customizations as well. They will also have mesh backs that boost the airflow and reduce uncomfortable overheating or allow you to adjust the height of the backrest. This is particularly important to consider if you are short and need extra help in reaching the different parts of the bike.
Stability vs. Size
The space that is available to you will determine the bike you go for. In the case of larger bikes, they have a high sense of security and stability, but they seem inconvenient due to space constraints. If you want a space-efficient option, folding bikes are good, but they might not provide as much stability.
Adjustment levers and handles
An important consideration in this case is the adjustment factor of levers and handles. The maximum recumbent bikes will always come with handles that are on both sides of the seat, while mounted handles are present on some models in order to monitor the posts.
Your best bet will be to go for bikes that have adjustable handles, and this will allow you to change their positioning to the most comfortable state.
Certain recumbent bike models have a primary monitor, which is located close to the front wheel. Others will have a computerized screen that is directly fastened to a vertical post that keeps it steady, while some have pedestals at fixed heights to increase your comfort.
Regardless of the choice you go for, the aim should be to increase your comfort while viewing the screen and the stats it displays, so be sure to keep this in mind.
You can spot this through the warranty – it essentially acts as your insurance policy, so the longer it is, the higher the quality of the bike. For a budget bike though, the warranty might not be as long, lasting for about a year or so.
Before buying a recumbent bike for short people, there are various factors to keep in mind – and knowing them will help you make better choices. The bikes do not come cheap anyway, and the last thing you want is spending your money on something you regret.