Stationary Exercise Bikes vs. Treadmills: Which Is the Better Workout?

Stationary Exercise Bikes vs. Treadmills: Which Is the Better Workout?

With more people opting to exercise at home, the treadmill and exercise bike have become sought-after indoor training tools.

Both machines offer a great workout and keep you safe from hazards you would normally encounter while jogging or cycling outdoors (e.g., unleashed dogs, impatient drivers, etc.).

Looking into the details, 1 hour of cycling on a standard indoor bike can burn as much as 257 calories for the average person who weighs 154lbs (70kg) compared to jogging on a treadmill for an hour which burns around 331 calories.

Both machines build lower body strength and leg muscles, which can help you achieve your weight loss goals. But the RENPHO AI Smart Bike offers more than your ordinary indoor bike. It is a top-of-the-line exercise bike that adapts to your power and performance.

The free AI Gym app that goes along with it is also packed with over 70 personalized workouts, featuring exciting real-world cycling courses from select destinations around the globe; cycling coach courses are also available to help you achieve your fitness goals.

Visit the RENPHO AI Smart Bike page to learn more. To purchase it, please head over to our online store.

But more on this particular bike later. For now, the question is which is better, a treadmill or an exercise bike? Read on to find out!

The Nitty Gritty

The battle between stationary bike vs treadmill starts off with a comparative analysis of the two types of exercise machines. Below, we’ve listed key areas of concern, from calories burned to how much space each machine occupies. You can use this information to decide which device will work best for your particular needs.

Weight Loss

The goal for a person purchasing exercise equipment for weight loss means that the most important consideration for a device is how many calories it will help them burn and how quickly it can help them do that. Here’s some basic calculations you can use to help determine if you should be purchasing a treadmill or bike based on your weight loss goals.

Treadmill: As mentioned, a 70kg person jogging on a treadmill for one hour can burn as much as 331 calories. Variations such as incline or speed will also increase the effort and burn more. Walking is also mostly something everyone can do so no additional knowledge or expertise is required.

Stationary Bike: Exercise bikes on the other hand can have a 70kg person lose 257 calories by pedaling along at a leisurely rate. But with an intense cycling rate, losing around 400 calories may be possible.

While the treadmill wins this round, the bike is definitely a good choice if the cycling sessions are planned to efficiently burn calories with high-intensity interval training to reduce the time spent coasting at a leisurely pace.

The RENPHO AI Gym App can be used with an AI Smart Bike to automatically set the cycling schedule and help make the most out of each exercise throughout the week.

Muscle Development

No matter whether you opt for an exercise bike or treadmill, your heart will always benefit from the cardio! Both workout machines primarily target the lower body’s muscle groups but the exercise bike provides the added benefit of also working the arms, core and back.

Treadmill: Your core muscles are located between your rib cage and hip area, these muscles constantly work to keep the body upright as you jog. Bracing your core while jogging can work out the core muscles to maximum effect.

Using the treadmill’s incline works out the calves and the front of your thighs called the quadriceps. Your hamstrings also get worked out whenever you walk or jog at an incline and these develop quicker as you heighten the intensity.

The three-part muscle group located in the glutes also gets worked out; the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus. These three work with the hamstring to provide support whenever you lift your knee.

Stationary Bike: The quadriceps get the most work as you pedal down while your hamstrings get its share of the load as you pedal up.

The calf muscles come into play as you pedal with a steady, upright form. On the other hand, your glutes will get the most effective workout when you lean forward as you cycle.

The lower back muscles will also get a pump the more you lean forward. Meanwhile, riding the bike in a reclined posture allows you to work out your abdominal area more effectively than jogging; your abdominal muscles will get more toned the more you increase the resistance.

Finally, your arms get a workout as your hands grip the handlebars to maintain balance as you do your intervals.


The number one benefit of using a treadmill or exercise bike is the safety it offers. Both can be placed inside a room where you do not have to worry about the elements or leaving the house for that matter!

Treadmill: As far as safety goes, using a treadmill is better than going out for a jog mainly because you can avoid being chased by neighborhood pets, navigating busy streets or bumpy roads in the dark.

Although you are safe from all of these encounters, using a treadmill does have its share of risks including stumbling, loss of balance if you immediately step off the machine and slipping due to higher inclines.

Stationary Bike: Compared to the treadmill, an indoor bike is safer because of the stability it offers even if you stop pedaling because you do not have to push any buttons to stop the machine.

As you are sitting most of the time, balance is a non issue as your hands and feet are stable on the handlebars and pedals respectively.

You also receive the added benefit of not having to think about getting a flat tire or having to cycle back home when you’re already spent!

Space / Footprint

Space is always an issue when it comes to buying equipment for a home gym. When taking a treadmill or exercise bike into consideration, the size and space requirement becomes a key factor in deciding which one to purchase. So, which is smaller?

Treadmill: The average size of a treadmill is around 3 feet wide and 6 feet long. The floor space needed must go beyond and users must be prepared to clear as much as 7 feet in width and around 12 feet in length to accommodate the machine.

Height-wise, around 9 inches is needed for comfort. The treadmill can be bulky and eats a lot of space although a folding version may be considered to reduce the amount of space occupied when not in use.

Stationary Bike: In terms of space, an indoor bike normally requires 4 feet in width and 8 feet in length, which is less than a treadmill. The RENPHO AI Smart Bike is compact at 4.8 feet in height, 1.6 feet in width and 3.3 feet in length.

Training Progression

Constant variability is needed to see real progression, and although both offer good options, it all falls down on which one offers the best features in terms of intensity and intervals.

Treadmill: This machine offers incline and speed options to adjust intensity as you opt from walking or running to climbing on an incline. This helps improve the workout for the lower body at the expense of a high-impact exercise that can hurt your knees if overtraining; the lack of an exercise plan may slow progression.

Stationary Bike: Indoor bikes have almost the same approach with adjustable speeds and resistance settings. The RENPHO AI Smart Bike AI Gym app adds to this by helping you set up your training sessions and taking command over personalizing and auto-adjusting resistance for the most efficient workout.

Injury Prevention: When using exercise equipment, injuries are always a potential risk; however, certain exercises are “riskier” than others. When comparing treadmills to indoor bikes, however, treadmill users tend to get injured more. Why?

Treadmill: Treadmills are generally high-impact machines, and your knees take all that punishment from running or even brisk walking. There is also the chance of losing your balance and falling off the machine. A sprained ankle is also likely if you happen to miss a step, and this type of injury can sideline you for some time.

Stationary Bike: Indoor bikes are generally safer with the injury risks arising from prolonged sitting, knee pain from pedaling too hard or feeling back and shoulder pain from being hunched over for too long.

The good thing about the AI Gym app is that it utilizes your power based on output and understands your limit. The freewheel motor means that the cycling momentum instantly stops when you do so there is no fear of injury from having the pedals move too fast.

Ease of Use and Enjoyment

Natural movement is required to operate both the treadmill and exercise bike--something almost everyone is familiar with. For most people, the treadmill just needs a little getting used to, walking with a belt below them, while the indoor bike requires less getting used to before you’re able to familiarize yourself with the exercise.

Treadmill: These machines are fairly easy to use and straightforward with their options. Pressing up increases speed, raises incline, etc. However, most treadmills do not incorporate smart technology and have to be adjusted manually or according to a standard easy/medium/difficult track course.

Stationary Bike: With an indoor bike like RENPHO, you may ride and go without the option to choose a training program However, the fun starts when you use the bike’s AI Gym app.

Choosing virtual courses based on real life bike trails adds value to your session as you can take a leisurely ride. You can also get competitive by joining challenging races. Finally, the app’s easy-to-use interface allows you to just tap on a goal and have your ride and output recorded.

Durability, Connectivity, and Smart Features

Exercise bikes and treadmills are both generally sturdy since they are placed in a fixed position with not much movement required to operate.

Treadmill: The treadmill generally has three parts for it to operate: speed and incline adjustment. Constant running will wear the thread and maintenance is required to keep the machine lubricated and ready to run.

Stationary Bike: Exercise bikes typically require less maintenance unless the electronics encounter an issue. As for features, the AI Gym app has a lot to offer, including 70+ unique classes, 4 courses and more.

The RENPHO AI bike also offers connectivity with its compatibility to 3rd party apps such as Zwift, Apple Health, and Google Fit.


Both machines are an investment to your home gym so choosing whether to ride or run can come down to the cost difference between the two machines. When looking for either a treadmill or indoor bike, look over the features it offers as well as warranty details and overall value for money.

Treadmill: Treadmills are more expensive and can hover around the range of $2,000 for a reliable brand. However, consideration of maintenance costs which include taking care of the treads, belt, and motor should be noted.

Stationary Bike: Indoor bikes are cheaper compared to treadmills with prices ranging between $200-$800. The bike does not necessarily need servicing aside from regular gear checks and maybe also forking out on a comfy seat pad for the longer rides.

Which is the Right Choice for You?

Is an exercise bike better than a treadmill? That depends. To choose the right product, think about what your goals are, what your limitations are, and what you think you’d truly enjoy doing. While both machines offer good cardio, there are pros and cons for each of them, and the specifics don’t necessarily apply to everybody.

The treadmill for instance, while perfect for belly fat loss, could put too much stress on your joints, especially if you have joint problems. If you are planning on running a marathon, however, then the exercise bike won't do much good and a treadmill would definitely be a better fit for you.

If you’re looking for the smaller, cheaper, lower-impact solution, then an exercise bike is probably the right choice for you. In addition, exercise bikes carry the same benefits of a treadmill such as working out your body and increasing lung capacity with the added benefit of being safer and easier on the joints.

Why Choose the Renpho AI Smart Exercise Bike

Should you end up deciding on getting an indoor bike then the RENPHO AI Smart Bike is the perfect choice. Its compact frame allows you to move it around the house and smart motor damping technology allows you to use it quietly.

Personalized Workouts for All

The AI Gym app is easy to install and sync with the AI Smart Bike so your biometric data and output on the bike can give you personalized workouts to improve your overall fitness based on your cadence, output and goals.

Performance Monitoring

Your time spent on the bike allows the AI Gym app to create weekly performance reports so you can adjust and expand your goals. You may also evaluate your cycling ability with a 15-minute cycling power test.

Free App With 70+ Classes

The AI Gym app is free and comes with 70+ classes, including video courses, power courses and challenges that will inspire you to shoot for the top spot.

Next Level Precision

The RENPHO AI Smart Bike features a smart motor that provides a quiet riding experience and adds resistance based on your power and performance.

Safety Ensured

With enclosed wheels and a freewheel design, there is no chance of getting your foot caught in the wheels or hitting your shins due to the forward momentum of the pedals coming to a full stop upon dismount.

Ergonomic Comfort

Its adjustable cushioned seat and ergonomically positioned handlebars offer a comfortable riding experience.

Get the Best Stationary Exercise Bike at RENPHO!

The RENPHO AI Smart Bike is a great addition to your home gym. Its space-saving design, connectivity to most 3rd party apps, tons of courses and other features on its own app truly make this bike a good and valuable addition to your fitness arsenal.

For full details on why you should choose our smart bike visit our page on the Best Stationary Home Exercise Bike, or if you’re ready to order, get your AI Smart Bike now.