elliptical vs spin bike

Spin bikes and elliptical trainers are both fantastic pieces of equipment that provide great workout routines. However, it is easy to wonder if both exercise machines are so excellent than I use, but that answer depends on your requirements and what you expect from the exercise equipment to do for you. Some differences exist here and there in both machines that might guide you on making the right choice for yourself based on your workout objectives and fitness goals. So to explore what is the best elliptical vs spin bike, let’s start our journey.

That’s why we have done a comparison between both exercise machines to chalk out their differences and similarities for making this daunting task of choosing one piece of equipment that you could feel is suitable for you super convenient. But let’s first dig into the basic idea of what both machines are like.

Elliptical trainer Spin Bike
Calories Burned Research shows that a person with160 pounds could burn at least 345 calories per 30 minutes of the workout. However, the number of calories burned depends highly on the resistance level and many other factors. Exercising on a spin bike for 30 minutes by a 155-pound person can burn 260 calories. However, the workout done at a high-intensity level can burn 400 to 600 calories in the same time which is much more than the calories burned on the elliptical.
Muscle involvement Elliptical trainers involve the full-body muscles. They provide a good deal of exercise to all body parts like shoulders, arms, chest, core muscles, glutes, hamstrings, and quads. On the other hand, a spin bike involves core muscles and lower body muscles like glutes, hamstrings, calves, and quadriceps much more deeply in the workout. They do exercise biceps and triceps while you use your arms to maintain the right posture, however, a spin bike is better at training the lower body and core muscles.
Stamina building Elliptical provides both low-impact and high-impact cardio but it is more famous for its low-impact cardiovascular exercise programs that involve walking and at most running at a steady pace. Therefore, it helps to build a good amount of normal stamina. Stamina-building is a spin bike’s specialty. Working out on a spin bike builds a massive amount of stamina as it offers quite high-intensity cardio exercises and allows you to push yourself and improve your endurance greatly. Spin bikes build stamina more efficiently than an elliptical trainer.
Easy Operation An elliptical trainer could be more advanced to set up, learn the system and get used to the exercise technique than the spin bike. It comes with pre-loaded programs, a lot of resistance levels, speeds, and modes that can confuse a beginner. Spin bike, on the other hand, is super basic, straightforward, and simple to use. It doesn’t come with advanced pre-loaded programs and is easier to set up. Also, the exercising technique is super easy to learn quickly because of the road bike riding similarity so it’s the best option for beginners. Moreover, the resistance can be set high or low by simply twisting the knob.
Space-saving equipment Elliptical trainers generally are heavier and wider than spin bikes. They require much more space to fit in your house or apartment than a spin bike though different models are available in the market that offers lightweight frames and better portability. Spin bikes also occupy a lot of space. However, they are more compact than elliptical trainers and come with transport wheels for easy transportation. Various changes depend on multiple models offered by the manufacturers though.
Impact on Joints Elliptical trainers are popular for their low-impact cardio and lower impact on the joints. The resistance type offered is usually magnetic. Therefore, the pedaling functions smoothly. Spin bikes are well-liked for their high-intensity exercises but they also provide low-impact cardio and at low resistance. You can feel very less impact on your overall joints as the flywheel runs smoother, building a consistent momentum that is easier to follow.
Rehabilitation As we discussed that elliptical trainer provides low-impact cardio that’s why it is a good choice to opt for rehabilitation. Many physicians suggest their patients with knee or foot injury to use an elliptical for fast recovery. The same thing goes for spin bikes, they also provide low-impact cardio which helps the patients suffering from knee or foot injury and arthritis to recover their joint’s regular functionality and strengthen their bones and muscles. In fact, spin bikes are often the first choice of physicians for a recommendation.
Cardiovascular exercise Elliptical trainers are a great low and high-impact cardio-providing piece of equipment. They offer a full-body workout that works great for users as they enhance blood circulation throughout the whole body. On the other hand, spin bikes also provide low and high-intensity cardiovascular exercises that help to engage all muscles while focusing more on the core and lower body muscles. They help to improve the overall blood circulation in the body and boost immunity.

Spin Bike

elliptical vs spin bike
  • The spin bike is also referred to as the stationary bike or the exercise bike as they are pretty similar and mimic the regular road bike’s structure. However, slight differences exist in both these bikes as well.
  • Nevertheless, the spin bike comes with handlebars, pedals, and a height-adjustable saddle.
  • Spin bikes are the best to use indoors, especially if you love cycling and can’t spin the wheels due to weather conditions by going outside.
  • Therefore, spin bikes are great exercise machines for spinning indoors and getting an incredible workout.
  • The spin bike requires low maintenance as it comes with fundamental features, so the bike is a more cost-effective solution in elliptical vs spin bike. 
  • Still, it doesn’t need any fancy programs either.
  • It gets the job done by offering multiple resistances, high cadence muscular endurance intervals, high-impact workout on a flat, moderate spinning on leveling area, and a challenging hill climb routine to the user.

Elliptical Trainer

  • Elliptical trainers provide both low and high-impact cardio.
  • They offer a full-body workout by delivering moveable arms and gliding pedals on which the user stabilizes their body and engages in the exercise.
  • Elliptical trainers, often called cross-trainers, offer multiple resistance levels, pre-loaded workout programs, speeds and come with an advanced console and settings.
  • Elliptical trainers are the best if you want to work out your whole body simultaneously at a low or high resistance.

The Best elliptical machine for seniors is our recent publication. We recommend elliptical for seniors while keeping in mind the problems and requirements of seniors who wish to work out at home.

Elliptical vs Spin Bike — Which Provides Better Muscle Movement?

Proper muscle movement is essential to reduce weight, shape, and tone your muscles, improve your blood circulation, boost immunity, and revitalize your internal organs. In other words, to maintain a healthy body and mind, maximum muscle movement is necessary, and that’s why most people do workouts in the first place anyway.

Elliptical trainers provide full-body workouts, which means that they involve every muscle in the workout, whereas spin bikes also engage almost all muscles. However, the main difference lies in the focus point. An elliptical might use all muscles, but it strengthens the upper body muscles better than the lower body muscles, whereas a spin bike strengthens the lower body muscles.

It all comes down to your choice now, which muscles do you want to work on more, and that’s how you can choose.

Which One’s Easy to Set Up and Require Low Maintenance?

Setting up the exercise equipment could be a daunting task so let’s see which one’s easy to set up, operate and maintain.

Spin bikes are super easy to set up and maintain. They are ideal for beginners and do not require much time to assemble as well. They are simple to do workouts on, and it’s easy to get the hang of the workout routine quickly.

In contrast, an elliptical trainer is advanced and requires high maintenance. It might take some time for the user to assemble and set up and understand its features. You might also take some time to learn the formation and exercising pattern on the elliptical.

Elliptical vs Spin Bike — Which One’s Better to Use During a Backache?

elliptical vs spin bike

Spin bikes require the user to exercise by bringing their back at a lower position which might be bad for a backache. However, sitting in a proper posture helps a lot. Usually, the backache occurs because of maintaining an unhealthy posture. That’s why exercising in the right posture could save you from backache.

On the other hand, an elliptical might be better to use in comparison to a spin bike during a backache because it doesn’t put some strain on the back while the workout and doesn’t require the back to stay in a low position constantly.

When it comes to backbone support with elliptical we particularly discuss it in elliptical vs running that which is a more beneficial and easy workout. We recommend you visit this resource to know more.

Which One’s More Costly?

While both exercise equipment can range from 300$ to 2000$ or more, the deciding factors for choosing a cost-effective machine includes:

  • Your budget.
  • The quality of both exercise machines.
  • The comparison between their models and which provides more and better at an average cost.

With that said, it’s totally up to you to determine the quality of the product. However, high-quality spin bikes can be bought at an affordable price. In contrast, an elliptical might not offer high quality at the same price and would require you to increase your budget, resulting in more expensive and costly.


Spin bikes and elliptical trainers are both fantastic pieces of equipment that provide a great workout to users. However, several differences occur in the equipment design, mechanism of usage, and results. Spin bikes burn more calories in a spin class, provide lesser impact on the joints and help to obtain massive stamina than elliptical trainers. Both are equally good at providing cardiovascular exercise, so the outcome depends on the input you invest in the workout.

Hopefully, our resource will help you to better decide between elliptical vs spin bike to get one valuable machine for your home gym.

As you are the one who will use the exercise machine, that’s why you should make the final choice according to your comfort level and workout objectives.

Our recent comparison of elliptical vs arc trainer helps you out to decide either you can add arc trainer as a second machine in your gym or not, moreover the benefits and requirements are discussed in depth.

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