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A Peloton Bike is a stationary bike with a touchscreen for interactive studio-grade spin classes (and more) at home. The Peloton app offers classes for exercises besides biking like yoga, strength training, running, etc.
Till September of 2020, there was only one type of Peleyon bike available. But now you have the added option of the Peloton Bike+. The main difference between the two bikes is that the regular model is solely for a cardio workout. In contrast, the higher-end model is meant for a whole body workout. We will look into some of the other differences between the two in a bit.
Peloton is very popular with its customers and has an almost cult-like following. Part of what drives this enthusiastic following is the subscription-based classes they offer. The trainers hosting these classes are often self-made celebrity coaches. These classes can either be live or on-demand.
There is a bunch of other things and benefits you should know about Peloton. But before we get to that, let’s briefly go over the differences between the two Peloton bikes currently on offer.
Differences between the Peloton Bike and the Bike+
Peloton launched the Bike+ in September 2020. It is more expensive than the regular Peloton bike but also comes with a few new features.
The Bike+ has considerably better speakers than the regular bike. On the previous version of the bike, the speakers were not really preferable over headphones. So the audio upgrade does make using the bike a little more convenient if taking classes on speakers is not a problem for you.
The Bike+ also comes with a bigger screen than the regular bike. However, the important feature here is rotation.
You see, the highlighting feature of the Bike+ is offering an all-body workout instead of the previous cardio-only approach. The rotating screen helps this by allowing you to turn the screen when you are doing other exercises off the bike. It may also help save space because you can exercise besides the bike rather than being directly behind it.
Automatic Resistance Adjustment
The Bike+ also brings in the innovative auto-follow resistance adjustment feature. You manually adjust the resistance on the regular Peloton bike as the class coach directs. You could even slack off and not do it if you wanted to.
On the new Bike+, the resistance settings adjust automatically as the class directs. This means you have one less thing on your hands, and you can follow along with the class seamlessly. You can still override the feature and adjust the knob yourself, so it does not take the control away.
Integration with the Apple Gym Kit Integration
Lastly, you can integrate the Peloton Bike+ with the Apple Gym Kit for a better workout ecosystem.
The 8 Benefits of a Peloton Bike over a Regular Bike
There are many reasons why the Peloton bike can be better than a regular bike. Here is why you should choose the former over a regular bike.
Studio Cycling Classes at Home
The convenience of the Peloton bike is probably its biggest benefit. People who attend several studio spin classes a week may appreciate this factor the most. Rather than going to a studio every other day, you get the same or even better quality classes at home.
Comparing studio-level spin classes with the regular biking routine is a no-brainer. Firstly, you get a professional trainer with tons of experience in coaching people. Getting an equivalent with normal biking is virtually impossible. The best you could do is ride with a group of other people.
The intensity of the Peloton spin classes is also much different than a regular biking session. Even though you could vary the intensity yourself at times when you are riding a regular bike, it probably will not be the same.
Not to mention, you can not change the resistance on your regular bike. On a Peloton bike, the resistance can get set for you by the class you are taking. You can also change it on your own in some riding modes. This allows for a versatile and tailored cycling experience and ultimately a better cardio workout.
One of the biggest benefits of a Peloton bike over a regular bike is the freedom it gives you. You do not have to work out at a specific time, and tons of on-demand classes are available. So whatever your day looks like, you should find a slot in your routine for working out. You do not have this luxury in regular biking.
Besides being at the mercy of the weather, regular biking may not offer flexible timing. If you can not work out during the day, you may have trouble riding at all. Things like the traffic, the lighting conditions, or how tired you are after the day’s work can all affect the quality of your regular bike ride.
These things are less of a worry with the Peloton bike.
Bad weather? No problem
Since you can use your Peloton bike at home, your ride may not be any different on a regular day than a snowy or rainy day.
So, where you can not really use regular bikes all year round, you can do so on a Peloton bike. In fact, if you feel like it, you can turn up the temperature and have a little sweat session in the middle of winter. Or you can dial down the intensity and class length and work out cooler than you would on a hot day on a regular bike.
Besides the weather, the Peloton bike also takes traffic or lighting conditions off the list of your worries. Overall, this gives you more control and flexibility in how and when you ride.
Ride with Friends and Others
Although you can not beat riding along with people you know every day, Peloton does a pretty good job of giving you something similar. Rather than you and your friends showing up at a studio spin class, you can schedule on-demand sessions with them.
On the app, you can see five-minute sessions going by all the time. Whenever you want in on an on-demand class, you have the option of joining a session and riding with other people. In the session, you have the leaderboard at the side. You can see everybody’s output on the board as the class progresses.
You can also invite friends over to a session and compete with each other. If you and your friends are taking the same class, you can start a video chat with them as well if you are both following each other.
Although this may be far from actually riding with a friend, it does make the experience much better.
Not to mention, the live classes allow you to ride and compete with literally tens of thousands of other people. You can see everybody’s position on the leaderboard on the right side of the screen.
Professional Workout Classes
The Peloton app has classes for everything from strength training and biking to yoga and running. All of these classes are from certified personal trainers. Most of these trainers are certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine, one of the best certifiers in the industry. So it’s no wonder why people love the quality of the classes they get on the platform both live, and on-demand.
The trainers help you get and stay motivated through the class, which is part of the ‘studio classes at the convenience of your home’ fitness model that Peleton is based on. Getting the same quality of coaching on a regular bike on-demand any time you want is practically impossible.
Full-Body Workout Option
Peloton may not have focused on a full-body workout experience when it started out, but it has stepped in this direction now. Peloton is highlighting the Full-Body workout Option you can avail with their new bike.
The platform already had a catalog of exercise classes, from strength training and running all the way across to yoga. With the Bike+’s rotating screen, doing exercises besides biking can be much more convenient.
And once again, this option is available for users all the time. So if you just can not find the time for the gym every day, the Peloton Bike and Bike+ provide a considerable alternative. You can do a full-body workout with either bike, but we would suggest the Bike+. Just make sure you have the proper workout equipment at home.
People often buy the bike for more than a single user. And the bike can definitely support the workout routines of multiple riders. All you need is Peloton’s All-Access membership for adding up to 20 people to the same account. Each user will have separate profiles where they can see their own performance metrics, records, and so on. We will discuss some of the other subscription features down in the FAQs.
Adjusting the bike for people of different heights and weights should not be much of a problem either. The bike can support people from 4’11” to 6’4″ and about 300 lbs. On the other hand, a regular bike may not be the best fit for multiple users who have significantly different heights and weights.
Little to No Maintenance
Peloton bikes are quite well-made. They do not require constant care or frequent maintenance. People mention how the regular Peloton bike works super-smooth even after hundreds of rides. So although these bikes come with hefty price tags, you do get some solid hardware in return.
In contrast, a regular bike may not cost as much, but it will likely have some problems here and there as it ages. You have to keep an eye on things like tire pressure, oiling, and brake erosion.
How Much Do Peloton’s Subscriptions Cost?
Peloton currently offers two types of subscriptions.
The first is their All-Access Membership which gives you access to all of their content. This includes all sorts of live and on-demand riding, running, strength, and yoga classes, etc. It is more expensive than the second subscription on offer, but it also delivers a lot of value.
This membership allows multiple users their own profiles (up to 20) on a single account. Available only for the Peloton Bike, Bike+, Tread, and Tread+ owners, it offers the integrated and immersive Peloton experience their users rave about. So if you want to see what is really behind all the hype, this subscription is the way to go.
The second subscription is Peloton’s App-Access membership. It does not require any of their exclusive hardware like the first subscription. Although this one is much cheaper, you do not get the whole Peloton experience here.
However, you do get access to the whole of Peleton’s content library. You can watch the same classes as Full-Access Peloton members. The app is also compatible with Apple Watches, so you track your metrics on the go. But this membership gives you single profile access rather than profiles for the whole household.
You can try this membership for free for the first 30 days before allowing Peloton to charge you anything.
Is the Peloton Bike Worth It?
Yes, the Peloton Bike (or Bike+) is well worth it. This is especially true if you are looking for an alternative to going to the gym or attending studio spin classes. It is much more convenient and allows for more flexibility in scheduling.
If you do the math, the fees you pay for your gym membership and the Peloton membership fee are not that different.
According to a survey in early 2021, the average gym membership costs about $40 a month. The cost spread can go from $31 at the lower end to $44 at the higher end. Peloton’s All-Access Membership currently also costs around $40 per month.
As for a spin class, the cost per session can be anywhere between $10-25. On Peloton, you can take all the classes you like on a monthly subscription.
Counting in the fact that Peloton’s classes are some of the best you can get, and you can use them whenever you please, Peloton’s membership does not seem like a bad deal at all.
Can You Use a Peloton Bike Without a Subscription?
Yes, you can use a Peloton bike without getting a monthly subscription. But in our opinion, this will be far from the full Peloton experience.
What you get is access to three classes and a free-ride mode. If you are fine with not interacting with other riders in the same class or session, this might work out for you. You will not have access to any of Peloton’s on-demand or live classes.
We would suggest going down this route only if you really want out of the monthly subscription fee routine. It will take a lot out of the experience, but you will still have the Bike’s robust hardware.