What to Look For
Regular physical activity, like cycling, can help to manage your weight, reduce your risk for disease and help to alleviate stress; cycling is also a great low impact workout that won’t put sore joints at risk of further damage. When the weather outside is being less than cooperative but you still want to reap the benefits of a long and intense ride, you can look to a good indoor trainer to help you get your workout in, without exposure to the elements.
The best indoor bike trainer for your situation will be sturdy enough to support you and your bike during rigorous pedaling, it will be quiet enough so that you can hear yourself think, it will be easy to use and it will be compact enough to fit exactly where you need it to once the workout is complete.
If you are looking for an indoor bike trainer instead of a stationary bike, odds are that you love getting out on the road when the weather permits; this is where one of the biggest pitfalls in buying an indoor bike trainer comes in. If you plan on going back and forth from road riding to indoor riding depending upon the conditions, you need to make certain that the trainer you select is easy to get your bike into and out of.
Another common mistake is not thoroughly researching to see if the trainer you select will fit the bike that you have. Not all trainers are “one size fits all,” when looking into different bike trainers, make sure that the models you are considering can be safely used with your bike.
Where to Buy
Quality bike trainers can be purchased from a wide variety of sources; manufacturer websites will likely have the most in depth information on their individual products but specialty bike stores and major on-line retailers might have useful information like customer reviews that can help you narrow down the options to the one that suits your situation the best.
Indoor bike trainers come in a wide variety of shapes and styles, depending upon what type you are looking at the costs can vary by hundreds of dollars. If you are a cyclist with a budget you can get a decent quality magnetic resistance unit for under a hundred dollars, but a top-of-the-line set of aluminum rollers or a high quality fluid resistance unit might cost as much as five hundred dollars or more.
Do plenty of research and lots of thinking before you make your final decision as there is an almost endless array of options to choose from. If you demand realism from your indoor trainer, you might want to consider a set of rollers by Kreitler, if you’ve got the space and money; Kinetic by Kurt makes some of the best fluid and wind resistance trainers available and budget-minded shoppers can get a durable, quality unit for a little less money from Blackburn or CycleOps.