Best Upright Exercise Bike

Best upright exercise bike

Finding the top-level upright exercise bikes to encourage a more natural riding experience, higher intensity workouts and a more realistic feel

Upright bikes are brilliant for so much it’s hard to know where to start. As the title suggests, an upright exercise bike encourages a more natural riding feel, gives room for higher levels of exertion, and generally feels a little more like you’re conquering the roads of the real world. So what do we have to look out for? And why should choose an upright bike instead of a recumbent bike?

Firstly, you should always be on the lookout for build quality, no matter the type of indoor cycle; you can hardly build a fitness lifestyle if the very thing you’re building on fails you. Secondly, when it comes to upright bikes, you want to reach out that sturdy hand, presumably cycling glove clad, mount the machine, and feel how the bike suits you. Is it ergonomic? Does the bike adjust to fit you? You need a tool that fits your needs, and with upright bikes being notably less relaxed or generally more comfortable than recumbent bikes then, you’ll need to prioritise this factor too.

Either way, with high intensity, burnout potential, a great chance for stronger calorie burning or endurance strengthening, and a good shot at feeling like a roaring road bike, you can be sure that an upright bike gives serious potential for serious riders and casual trainers alike.

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In A Rush?

  Best On A Budget: Most Stylish: Best For Under £1K: Best High-End: Best Mid-range:
Brand JLL Nohrd JTX Life Fitness NordicTrack
Model JF600 Pro Upright Exercise Bike Cyclo-5 C3 Upright Bike GX 4.5 PRO
Photo F3
Resistance Electronic Magnetic Resistance n/a 16 Levels (Magnetic resistance) 20 Levels (Magnetic resistance) 25 Levels (Digital Resistance)
Max. Weight 135 kg 200 kg 160 kg 181 kg 125 kg
Assembled Dimensions 147L x 52.5W x 113H cm 215H x 40W x 20Depth cm 128L x 61W x 152H cm 115L x 69W x 143H cm 117L x 63W x 168H cm
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Best Upright Exercise Bike On A Budget:

JLL JF600 Pro Upright Exercise Bike For Home

Key features

  • Resistance – Electronic magnetic resistance 
  • Crank – Sturdy 3-piece crank system
  • Monitor – Blue-lit 5.5” monitor that tracks time, speed km h heart, distance, calories, and heart rate
  • Flywheel – 6 KG flywheel
  • Pedals – Comes with adjustable toe straps
  • Handlebars – Built-in pulse sensors and 360-degree adjustability 
  • Seat – Height adjustment levels available
  • Transport – Wheels built-in
  • Maximum user weight – 135 KG
  • Maximum seat height – 108 cm
  • 12 built-in workout programs
  • Electronic magnetic resistance system with 32 levels for a smoother workout
  • Durable rubber belt quality means less maintenance
  • Built-in tablet holder
  • Wheels for easy transport
  • Some users have mentioned that the seat feels uncomfortable


A stylish all-rounder, with this upright frame, you get the option to power up and take a smooth ride on this comfortable bike. If you want to increase the difficulty of this bike, you can do that with ease. Make use of the 32 levels of resistance to really enhance the challenging aspects of this bike. And remember, if you want a more realistic gear feel to your upright bike, then making use of the resistance levels is a great place to start.

To help support the upright exercise bike feel, you can make use of the slimline and position-optimised handlebars. But there’s more than meets the eye here. Underneath these superbly built handlebars, you’ll find some top-notch tech – 360-degree built-in pulse sensors to help monitor telemetry. Brilliant. But if you were more focussed on the other components that help comprise this brilliantly designed frame, then you’re in luck because there are plenty of them.

I found that the seat adjustments that are included enable you to position yourself in a comfortable riding position. You have a maximum seat height of 108 cm and a minimum seat height of 89 cm.

Furthermore, the toe and foot straps help you to lock your feet in with the pedals securely. This is great for giving you the confidence to cycle intensely without worrying about your feet slipping off the pedals. The soft grip pedals also provide you with comfort while cycling.

A great upright bike with all-round frame consideration. This bike also has a brilliantly to-the-point console to help enhance your fitness game, so be sure to check that out too.

Want to know more? Read our full review of the JLL JF600 Pro Upright Exercise Bike For Home here.

Most Stylish Upright Exercise Bike:

Nohrd Upright Exercise Bike

Key Features

  • Available in various woods
  • Bluetooth technology
  • Perfectly weighted flywheel
  • Precise planetary gearing system
  • Solid wooden and steel frame
  • Fold over handlebars to accommodate a wooden table for workstation option
  • Optional seat with backrest.
  • No console – uses handheld devices only
  • Rubber wheels for manoeuvrability
  • Suitable for body height range 160cm – 200cm
  • Incredible space-saving design (o.44 sq meters)
  • Unique look and feel with an array of inviting finish options
  • Precision engineering from industry-leading manufacturers
  • Brilliantly balanced flywheel relative to frame providing a balanced workout and keeping you safe
  • Unique look may only be for some
  • No console


This unique and artistic-looking bike is much more than just an eye-pleaser. With a brilliant range of wood types to choose from, you can combine the delicate blending of heavy steel and natural wood to help make your front room or home gym look even better.

But what’s going on under the hood?

From the advanced planetary gearing to the wear-free brake technology to the point engineering, this bike is a beacon for well-designed alternative machines everywhere. With a focus on life span, component integrity, and small but smart features, this machine is a welcomed addition to any home gym or health club set-up.

You also get to make use of the hybrid pedals and infinitely variable pedal stroke for resistance applications. In short, you can tire yourself out on this exercise bike in an instant if you want to, and because we’re here for upright bikes, then you’ll want to have that option as a given, obviously.

This Nohrd bikes compact footprint aside, from the ease of moving features determined by the rubber transportation wheels to the fluidly controlled setting disc, this Nohrd bike boasts accessibility as the word of the day.

Exercise bikes like this are brilliant for those wanting smart, intuitive and superb-looking properties.

Want to know more? Read our full review of the Nohrd Upright Exercise Bike here.

Best Upright Exercise Bike For Under £1K:

JTX Cyclo-5 Upright Gym Exercise Bike (£725)

Key Features

  • Number of Resistance: 16
  • 17kg heavy flywheel
  • Quadri set adjustment system
  • Advanced computer with BlueTooth
  • 12 preset programs
  • Superior heavy build quality
  • Built-in speakers
  • Water bottle holder
  • SPD clip-in pedal system ( optional upgrade)
  • Adjustable handlebar and seat
  • Heart rate monitor
  • Lifetime frame warranty
  • Racer style handlebars
  • Deliver an outstanding performance
  • Sturdy and durable design
  • Self-generated power
  • Workout variety
  • The frame is heavy, which makes it difficult to move


An affordable yet sturdy entry, the Cyclo 5 Upright Bike accommodates both beginners and serious cyclists alike. As a sturdy framed stationary bike, the Cyclo 5 is really built for power rides and HIIT training. A stationary exercise bike needs to accommodate for rigorous movements, and so the blend of materials on this entry gives you a stable platform to ride on.

But with sturdiness comes comfort needs…

Correct alignment and posture stimulate a good riding technique. This helps in reducing the risk of injury and enhances performance for a more stable ride. A huge thanks to JTX Fitness for introducing the exceptional Quadri set adjustment system for perfect alignment. With its oversized cushioned seat, you can have the most comfortable position and a stable ride, helping the user to work on their overall fitness effectively. It allows the user to create correct alignment and posture via its bespoke configuration.

All in all, a great build with adjustability features and comfort at the forefront of intense workout potential.

Want to know more? Read our full review of the JTX Cyclo-5 Upright Gym Exercise Bike here.

Best High-End Upright Exercise Bike:

Life Fitness C3 Upright Bike (track connect console)

Key Features

  • Mains power required with Track Connect Console
  • 20 Resistance Levels
  • Contact heart rate hand sensors
  • Telemetric heart rate monitoring (chest strap included)
  • Self-balancing pedals
  • Integrated Accessory Tray
  • Reading rack
  • 2 x Cup holders
  • Front wheels for mobility
  • Self-generating power
  • Self-balancing pedals
  • Racing style handlebars
  • Console choice
  • Wireless chest strap accessories
  • Racing-style handlebars can be a little tough on the hands after a while
  • Go console could be seen as too minimal for some


A brilliantly smart machine, this Life Fitness C3 Upright Bike boasts a host of innovative and rider-oriented features. For example, the self-balancing pedals make for a brilliant platform for you to safely work out from. Simply, they reduce hassle and risk to ensure your workout is streamlined and safe.

But safety isn’t exactly an exciting word, but then again… neither is efficiency. Thankfully, we don’t have to be excited in order to fall in love with the C3. And despite efficiency often falling flat on the old endorphin floodgates, the C3’s self-powering, energy-saving power source should at least bring a grin to some.

Onto the console. With expert advice, 15 workout programmes, and HIIT: Custom high-intensity interval training, this console is undoubtedly worth the money. Given the more attractive design of the exercise bike, the chance to get a more effective workout, non-slip, and seamless tracking, I would recommend this version of the Life Fitness C3 upright lifecycle exercise bike for those wanting to get the most out of their equipment purchase.

The self-powered aspects, combined with the long-lasting frame, make this machine a purchase for the future. The C3 upright indoor cycle is a smart, energy-saving bike with a focus on getting the most out of a minimal design.

Want to know more? Read our full review of the Life Fitness C3 Upright Bike (track connect console) here.

Best Mid-range Upright Exercise Bike:

NordicTrack GX 4.5 PRO Exercise Bike

Key Features

  • Resistance – 25 digital resistance levels 
  • Flywheel – 9 KG flywheel 
  • Monitor – 5” LCD display that shows time, distance, speed, calories burned, and heart rate
  • Adjustable Seat – Horizontal & vertical seat adjustments are available
  • Pedals – Ergonomic design with adjustable toe straps 
  • Transport – Built-in transport wheels 
  • Max user weight- 125 KG
  • Product Dimensions – 117 cm x 63 cm x 168 cm 
  • Item weight – 47 KG
  • 25 SMR silent magnetic resistance levels
  • Quiet & smooth flywheel
  • Comfortable oversized seat with lots of adjustment options
  • Compatible with the iFit technology for an expansive workout library
  • Google Maps compatible
  • Assembly can take time


If you’re after something over the minimalist threshold, then this entry could be the perfect match you’re after. With google maps compatible, a large but easy-to-read monitor, iFit integrated with an extensive workout library, and other additions like a workout fan and dual speakers system… this long list is guaranteed to enhance your workout every time you ride.

And of course, the obvious things like the LCD display, iFit, Bluetooth which are all excellent features. The iFit elite personal trainers motivate you beyond what you’d ever achieve by yourself, taking an ordinary fitness routine to the next level on a daily basis!

And to support these extras, you get a brilliant and sturdy build, 25 levels of magnetic resistance, on-demand classes and a superb indoor cycling experience. This entry is brilliant for those wanting an extra hint of technology and enhancement to help them reach their fitness goals and evolve their fitness lifestyle.

Want to know more? Read our full review of the NordicTrack GX 4.5 PRO Exercise Bike here.


To conclude, I’ve ridden and tested these amazing bikes myself, and I’ve found that every single one is up to standard here. Mostly, I believe the key to a great upright cycle is actually a combination of things: resistance levels, pedal action, Q factor, ergonomic components and a sturdy minimal-move frame that supports me when I let loose.

Spin bikes aren’t always the superior quality that you find on this list. Often, bikes are well built, but well built enough? Not always. In many cases, stationary bikes are actually badly built, so be on the lookout for dodgy deals and unknown manufacturers – no one wants to waste their money. In any case, if you want to lose weight or stay motivated through technology, then any kind of bike, a smart exercise bike or upright stationary bikes, will do the trick. From no console but phone holder to well built classy bike with extras and top-notch fundamentals, you should be pleased to hear of the abundance of choice.

As always, make sure to weigh up those pros and cons to ensure the best outcome possible. It’s your money – it’s hard to make it in a rush, so don’t spend it in a rush either. You may be tempted to go off of brand name alone, for example, like the peloton bike or other bikes of reasonable status. While you’ll be getting a good quality product, your buying decision should be informed more so by preference. The right bike for you is out there, whether it’s for weight loss or a full body workout, the fitness world exists for you, so always remember that.


Are there any weaknesses to a folding exercise bike?

Even the best exercise bikes have weaknesses. A folding exercise bike generally has less frame integrity than say a recumbent exercise bike that doesn’t fold.

What could be the defining factor for the best exercise bike on the market?

Recumbent exercise bikes, air bikes, upright standard cycles – all bikes are different, and each will appeal to you in different ways. The best feature is the best thing for you, so make sure to think about what’s really going to change your lifestyle.

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