Recumbent exercise bikes are worth considering if you are recovering from an injury or you find upright bikes uncomfortable. Proform is one popular manufacturer. Most Proform recumbent bikes feature an EKG heart rate monitor embedded in the handlebars, as well as controls to let you alter the speed, incline, resistance and seat position. There are a few differences between the various models worth considering when deciding if a Proform recumbent bike is right for you.
Proform 480 CSX
Like other Proform models, the Proform 480 CSX features preprogrammed workouts as well as an oversize seat for added comfort. The coolest feature that makes this model stand out is the GameFit Touch-Screen, which lets you play video games while working out. The iFit Workout Card is embedded with the voice of a certified personal trainer and plugs directly into the bike's console. Your speed is automatically adjusted while the recorded voice walks you through your workout. Plan on spending between $500 and $600 for this model as of 2009.
Proform 385 CSX
The Proform 385 CSX can be found online discounted for as much as $200 less than the newer 480 CSX, as of 2009. While the 385 CSX does not have a video game to help you take your mind off your workout, its iPod-compatible audio port will let you lose yourself in music. Although there is no iFit Workout Card, this older model does feature a pacer coach to help you stay within a program's fitness goals.
Proform GR 80
The GR 80 is the least expensive of the three, at less than $200 as of 2009. The saying "You get what you pay for" appears to apply with this model when comparing it against the 385 and 480 CSX. The GR 80 has fewer workouts from which to choose, a less impressive LED readout screen and fewer seat adjustment options. It does, however, feature a cooling fan along with an EKG heart rate monitor, and is a solid fitness bike for the price.
Article Written By Virginia Franco
Based in Charlotte, N.C., Virginia Franco has more than 15 years experience freelance writing. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications, including the education magazine "My School Rocks" and Work.com. Franco has a master's degree in social work with an emphasis in health care from the University of Maryland and a journalism degree from the University of Richmond.