Exercise bikes provide a great way to keep fit within the comfort of your home
But traditional exercise bikes take up a lot of space and look a bit ugly if left out in your dining room.
So, folding exercise bikes are a great alternative, allowing you to cycle regularly and store the bike out of site when you’re not using it.
However, there are lots of new bikes coming to the market, and it can be difficult to know which one is best for your training.
So, I’ve put together this review list of the 11 best folding exercise bikes in the UK to help you out.
Ultrasport F-Bike and F-Rider folding exercise bike
The Ultrasport F-Bike is a well respected mid-range folding exercise bike, ideal for the home user. It is light weight, very compact and easy to assemble. After use, it folds down into a small unit that can easily be stored around the house, so if you are short on space or like a minimalist look to your place, it’s ideal. There are 8 resistance levels, a comprehensive LCD display, integrated heart rate monitors in the handles and a simple, sleek design. The build quality is good, the bike is quiet during use and as an item that requires no plugging in, is both environmentally and wallet friendly!
- Great build quality – quiet during use
- Easy construction – average of 20 minutes
Ultrasport F-Bike Advanced Bicycle Trainer with Training Computer
This is the more advanced version of the Ultrasport F-Bike, with an upgraded computer, an in-built supportive backrest and a new, curved and brighter design. It still maintains the ease of construction and the simple fold-away mechanism though, making it ideal for the home user who wants to store the bike away easily before and after use. The 8 resistance levels are beginner friendly rather than expert, but if you’re new to cycling or just looking for some gentle home exercise, it could be ideal. The build quality is great and noise levels during operation are low, so it’s very neighbour/sleeping child friendly!
- Supportive backrest – very comfortable for riders
- Great build quality
KUOKEL Indoor folding Exercise Bike
The KUOKEL indoor folding bike is an upper mid-range offering in terms of price, but when it comes to build quality and features it scores very highly. As you’d expect it folds away nice and small, plus it’s very easy to set up. There are also additional features with the bike – the seat post has drilled holes for a pin to secure position ensuring the seat doesn’t slip out of place. There’s a seat with a back rest and side handles, turning it into a recumbent bike as well. The in-built heart rate monitor, LCD display and mobile phone holder complete the feature set.
- Side handles on the seat – allows for additional user comfort
- Mobile phone holder – allows rider to keep their phone close by for music
Pleny Foldable Fitness Exercise Bike
The PLENY foldable fitness bike is deceptive – the design comes in pink or black and the frame size is small at 116cm high, so you’d think this is aimed squarely at the female market. When you dig a little deeper you realise that the black model is a harder resistance, catering for those who want or need a tougher workout. The build quality of the PLENY bike is great and it has transportation wheels on the frame, making moving the bike a doddle. It’s very easy to store thanks to its smaller frame size than other bike sin the range.
- Two models in the range, allowing for more choice depending on fitness levels.
- Small and sleek for easy storage.
XS Sports B210 Folding Magnetic Exercise Bike
This bike from XS Sports is at the lower-priced end of the market, but don’t be fooled by that – it’s a well-made, sturdy bike and is more than up to the task of providing a decent home bike workout. It’s a very simple and minimalist design, which is reflected in the price. The LCD screen is a common issue in that it is temperamental, but this isn’t a problem if you’re not bothered about the data (or you track your data via a watch for example). The bike is easy to put together and folds away well. Ideal for those on a lower budget/not looking to spend much.
- Good resistance levels from the bike.
- It’s no frills, so keeps the price down.
Beliwin Exercise Bike Home
The Beliwin Exercise bike is a feature-packed bike that really sets the standard for folding bikes. It comes at a mid-range price, but in terms of features, quality and user experience it could be priced significantly higher. What makes it a great option for home users is that it comes with a detachable desk, meaning you can convert it from a standard bike into a desk, so you can exercise as you work/do errands! There’s a back rest making the seat more comfortable, and 8 resistance levels. The LCD screen is comprehensive and the set-up is simple. The bike folds down and stores easily. It’s a well-built bike and weighs 20kg, so is a good quality item.
100 words about bike
- Detachable desk for working as you exercise
- Multiple handle positions for user comfort
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike
The Viavito Onyx bike is a simply designed folding bike that comes in at a relatively low price point. There are one or two questions around the build quality of the bike, but in general it seems to be good enough for the price. The bike is fully adjustable and the LCD screen works well. It also has the built-in heart rate monitor which is a useful feature. As you’d expect with a simple bike, construction takes very little time and the folding up mechanism works well. It’s easy to store and at 14kg, isn’t as heavy as some of the other folding bikes.
- Clear LCD screen
- Built in heart rate monitor
Esprit BIKE-X Fitness Belt Driven Exercise Bike Foldable
The Esprit BIKE-X is a budget folding exercise bike that offers the user the ultimate in simplicity. There are no real features to talk of, save for an LCD screen. If you’re on a very tight budget or are brand new to home cycling, this bike may be fine for you. Thanks to the simple design the construction is quick and easy, as is moving the bike around and finding a place to store it. The bike won’t offer you the workout of your dreams, nor will it blow you away with its features, but for less than £50 you can enjoy some simple exercise at home.
- Simple, sleek design
- LCD Screen works well
Esprit Fitness XLR-8 Exercise Bike Adjustable Resistance
The Esprit Fitness XLR-8 bike is a slight direction change from the model I reviewed above. The bike doesn’t fold away, but it’s designed to be very small and compact, achieving the ‘easy to store’ brief. In terms of design it’s feature-light, but aesthetically it’s a step change from their folding bike, with brighter designs for the flywheel box. It’s a very budget bike, so don’t expect fantastic build quality, but it’ll do the job if you’re on a low budget or have very limited needs from your bike. The LCD screen works well and the low resistance is beginner friendly. Not ideal for fitter, more experienced riders.
- Compact design, easy to move and store
- Easy to put together
Althlyt Folding Exercise Bike
If you’re looking for an affordable, simple home exercise bike then the Athlyt Folding Exercise Bike could be the one for you. It wastes no time with unnecessary features, sticking to the tried and tested LCD screen, in-built heart rate monitor and a simple, user-friendly construction and simple folding mechanism. It’s a well-built item, offers 2.5kg of resistance (suitable for beginner-intermediate riders), is quiet during use and a has basic design – just what you’d expect for a bike at this price point. Doesn’t over-promise, just does what it needs to.
- Natural riding position.
- Quiet during use
Fit4home X892 Fitness Magnetic Folding Exercise Bike
This bike from Fit4home is another bike with a minimalist design. It’s a simple construction, but it is slightly upgraded thanks to the additional upright seat padding and seat-side handlebars, turning it into a more comfortable riding position for some people. The yellow and black colouring make this an attractive bike to look at and the LCD system is the only real striking feature on the handlebars. There are no in-built heart rate monitors or drinks holders, but then this is towards the lower end of the price range. Overall it’s a well-built and easy bike to use, but best for beginner riders.
- Padded back seat for comfort
- Seat-side handlebars
What to look for when choosing a folding exercise bike
If you’re in the markets for a folding exercise bike, there are a few things you need to consider. In this section I’ll run you through a few of the things you need to consider before making your purchase…
The resistance on a bike can be provided via a few different technologies. Here’s a quick guide to them all…
Magnetic bikes use an electric current to control the strength of the magnet. The magnets act to slow down the rotation of the wheel, so the higher you turn the resistance, the stronger the magnetic force acting to slow down the wheel. This is a technology usually reserved for more expensive bikes.
The fan-based bikes work by forcing the rider to overcome wind resistance. The harder and faster you pedal, the more wind acts against the wheel. To increase the resistance level you have to allow more air into the fan and the opposite is the case when you want to reduce the resistance.
Belt resistance is the cheaper but simpler technology. The belt sits on the wheel and the higher you turn the resistance lever, the tighter the grip on the wheel, forcing you to push harder to turn the wheel. Be aware that this technology is the most likely to fail, so although it’s cheaper, the belt may loosen or snap over time. Something to be aware of.
Weight bearing amount
The maximum user weight is an important issue if you are a larger rider. Typically speaking most bikes will accommodate a rider up to 100kg (nearly 16 stone), with some going up to 130kg. Make sure you check before you buy your bike.
There are typically speaking two types of bike seat on a folding bike – the flat seat that you see on a standard exercise bike and there’ll be some with the supported back seat that you see on some of the higher end models. The bike seats will have a gel covering in some more expensive bikes.
You’ll also have to pay attention to the rider position – if you’re particularly tall then you’ll need to purchase a bike with a longer seat stem to adjust your position.
Pay attention to the materials used – if you are riding the bike regularly then it’ll need to be mostly constructed from metal – plastic tends to break easily, so you’re looking for a bike with as little plastic as possible. Also, go for chain, magnetic or fan-based resistance over belt resistance if you’re using the bike a lot because it’ll last longer.
Almost all bikes will come with an LCD screen, with some better than others and including extra data such as heart rate. Some bikes come with a free subscription to an online training platform, so keep an eye out for those if you want extra training variety.
Choosing the best folding exercise bike for your needs
Decide on what’s important to you and make your choices – look at features such as the home exercise bike cost, build quality, resistance levels and the comfort, then decide what you’re willing to pay for an what you’re not bothered about. Take the time to make the right choice and it’ll be an investment that’ll pay you back in the long term for your fitness or weight loss goals.