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Best Exercise Pedals For Elderly Individuals

Regular exercise plays a crucial role in healthy living as you age. Staying active improves your balance, strength, and coordination, making you a physically and mentally healthier individual. However, seniors can’t work out the same way they did when they were younger. Stiff joints, rigid muscles, and mobility impairment make it even harder for older adults to move properly.

To prevent injuries, invest in senior-friendly exercise equipment like a pedal exerciser. Low-impact pedal exercises work out the whole body with minimal risk of injury — especially if you pedal at a steady pace. Moreover, there are dozens of exercise pedals for elderly folks. Whether you need an exercise pedal for yourself or a loved one, you’ll find one here that suits your needs.

What Is A Pedal Exerciser?

As its name suggests, a foot pedal exerciser is a small, knee-high piece of exercise equipment with bike pedals at the sides. Think of it as a mini exercise bike, minus the frame and handle. Place the exercise machine in front of you while sitting on a sturdy chair, plant your feet firmly on the pedals, adjust the pedal straps, then proceed to pedal.

Most models feature different resistance settings. Just don’t expect to use your desk cycle for anything more than low-impact exercise. Sure, it can boost blood circulation and improve flexibility. However, it can’t accommodate high-intensity exercises for losing weight or toning muscles.

Best Brands of Pedal Exercisers For Elderly People

Are you in the market for a high-quality pedal exerciser?  We made a roundup of the most widely trusted models among seniors.

Product NameDeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal ExerciserProActive Portable Folding Digital Pedal ExerciserMini Exercise Bike with Smooth Pedal SystemDMI Pedal ExerciserMagneTrainer - ER Mini Exercise Bike Arm and Leg Exerciser
Length24”12.9”15”22.6”16”
Height10”9.65”12”11.3”16”
Weight capacity500 lbs.200 lbs.300 lbs.220 lbs.350 lbs.
AssemblyEasy to assembleComes assembledComes with follow-along assembly videoComes assembledEasy to assemble
Price$189.00$38.95$89.99$29.26$189.00
Product NameCarex Foldable Under Desk Exercise BikeCanDo 01-8030 Magneciser Pedal ExerciserExerpeutic Motorized Leg and Arm Pedal ExerciserElectronic Physical Therapy Rehab Bike Trainer ExerciserVive Desk Bike Cycle - Foot Pedal Exerciser
Length14.5”18”16”24”15.5”
Height9.5”16”13”15”7.5”
Weight capacity250 lbs.250 lbs.300 lbs.300 lbs.400 lbs.
AssemblyEasy to assembleEasy to assembleComes assembledModerately challenging to assembleComes assembled
Price$44.22$175.00$109.99$1,559.00$79.99

1. DeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser

 DeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 24”
  • Height: 10”
  • Weight capacity: 500 lbs.
  • Assembly: Easy to assemble
  • Price: $189.00

This pedal exerciser by DeskCycle stands among the best options. It features a high-quality magnetic resistance mechanism featuring eight different resistance levels, which you can easily adjust.

ProsCons
Best value for moneyNo replacement parts
PortablePoor customer service
Produces minimal noiseDoesn’t suit people with large feet

2. ProActive Portable Folding Digital Pedal Exerciser

ProActive Portable Folding Digital Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 18.9”
  • Height: 9.65”
  • Weight capacity: 200 lbs.
  • Assembly: Comes assembled
  • Price: $38.95

If you find magnetic resistance pedal exercisers too pricey, opt for the ProActive Portable Folding Digital Pedal Exerciser. It ranks among the most affordable models in the market. Also, this portable pedal exerciser weighs only six pounds, so you can easily move it around the house.

ProsCons
Affordable priceNeeds maintenance
Super lightweightMechanical pedals don’t rotate smoothly 
No assembly neededHeats up after a few minutes

3. Mini Exercise Bike with Smooth Pedal System

Mini Exercise Bike with Smooth Pedal System
  • Length: 15”
  • Height: 12”
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Assembly: Comes with follow-along assembly video
  • Price: $89.99

This Mini Exercise Bike features an affordable yet quality adjustable magnetic resistance mechanism that pedals smoothly. You can use it as an arm pedal exercise.

ProsCons
Easy to move aroundSlips on smooth surfaces
Smooth pedal motionMakes loud noises
Compact and space-savingRequires sturdy, fixed seating

4. DMI Pedal Exerciser

DMI Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 22.6”
  • Height: 11.3”
  • Weight capacity: 220 lbs.
  • Assembly: Comes assembled
  • Price: $29.26

DMI Pedal Exerciser is one of the best affordable mini exercise bikes available. Despite the low price tag and simple mechanism, it still comes with an adjustable speed motor. Just twist the tension knob to adjust resistance.

ProsCons
Super affordable price tagFlimsy friction pedals
No assembly neededMetal frame heats up
Adjustable resistancePlastic leg stoppers smell bad

5. MagneTrainer - ER Mini Exercise Bike Arm and Leg Exerciser

MagneTrainer - ER Mini Exercise Bike Arm and Leg Exerciser
  • Length: 16”
  • Height: 16”
  • Weight capacity: 350 lbs.
  • Assembly: Easy to assemble
  • Price: $189.00

The MagneTrainer ER mini arguably has the best magnetic resistance system. It pedals smoothly and produces minimal noise so that you can use it even in quiet settings like an office.

ProsCons
Has adjustable velcro strapsLarger pedals cost more
Also works out the upper bodyNo web support
Uses patented magnetic resistance systemSlips if you pedal hard

6. Carex Foldable Under Desk Exercise Bike

Carex Foldable Under Desk Exercise Bike
  • Length: 14.5”
  • Height: 9.5”
  • Weight capacity: 250 lbs.
  • Assembly: Easy to assemble
  • Price: $44.22

This folding pedal exerciser from Carex is one of the best options. Its simple, straightforward setup allows users to carry it around their homes with ease.

ProsCons
Suited for kneecap injuriesFlimsy parts and attachments
Easy to storeCan’t handle fast pedaling
Affordable price tagPedals slip

7. CanDo 01-8030 Magneciser Pedal Exerciser

CanDo 01-8030 Magneciser Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 18”
  • Height: 16”
  • Weight capacity: 250 lbs.
  • Assembly: Easy to assemble
  • Price: $175.00

Older adults who want quiet, smooth pedals without going over $200 can opt for the CanDo 01-8030 Magneciser Pedal Exerciser. It has one of the magnetic mechanisms available.

ProsCons
Pedals turn smoothlyAssembly tools are flimsy 
Easy to set upLimited replacement parts
Compact and space-savingNeeds maintenance

8. Exerpeutic Motorized Leg and Arm Pedal Exerciser

Exerpeutic Motorized Leg and Arm Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 16”
  • Height: 13”
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Assembly: Comes assembled
  • Price: $109.99

Partial quadriplegic who can no longer use their limbs fully can try out the Exerpeutic Motorized Leg and Arm Pedal Exerciser. Plus, it has motorized pedals. You can use its app to control the motor, track vital signs, and review activity reports.

ProsCons
Comes with own appMotor doesn’t have off switch
Motor turns pedals itselfNeeds maintenance
Suits partial quadriplegic patientsPedals squeak at first

9. Electronic Physical Therapy Rehab Bike Trainer Exerciser

Electronic Physical Therapy Rehab Bike Trainer Exerciser
  • Length: 24”
  • Height: 15”
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Assembly: Moderately challenging to assemble
  • Price: $1,559.00

The Electronic Physical Therapy Rehab Bike Trainer Exerciser is the best mini exercise bike for older adults with disabilities. You can even attach it to wheelchairs. Apart from a pedal exerciser, this machine also has an arm exerciser attached to the sides of its LCD screen.

ProsCons
Wheelchair-friendlyAssembly requires handyman experience
Easy to adjustPricier than other pedal exercisers
Designed for PWDsOnly for light movements

10. Vive Desk Bike Cycle - Foot Pedal Exerciser

Vive Desk Bike Cycle - Foot Pedal Exerciser
  • Length: 15.5”
  • Height: 7.5”
  • Weight capacity: 400 lbs.
  • Assembly: Comes assembled
  • Price: $79.99

The Vive pedal exerciser ranks among the best pedal exercisers for heavy adults. Its safety straps, pedals, and metal frame can support up to 400 lbs. Meanwhile, other pedal exercisers for seniors have a maximum capacity of 200 to 250 lbs.

ProsCons
Supports heavy usersMetal frame heats up
Sturdy; durable mechanismMoves around for smaller users
Easy storagePedals wobble at fast speeds

What Are The Benefits of Pedal Exercisers For Elderly?

Are you still on the fence about getting a pedal exerciser for seniors? To help you make an informed, objective choice, we listed the benefits of regularly using a desk pedal exerciser.

Increases Metabolism

You can lose weight faster and boost your calories burned by pedaling on higher resistance levels.

Remains Convenient and Accessible

You don’t have to change your entire schedule to squeeze in a brief workout session. You can even do this leg exercise under your desk while working, watching tv, or reading a book.

Keeps Joints Healthy

Older adults who get mild joint pain while sprinting or jogging can cycle on a seated pedaling machine instead. Exercise peddler models are relatively low-impact. 

Boosts Cardiovascular Fitness

Cycling is an excellent cardio exercise that lowers blood pressure levels, strengthens stamina, and improves heart health.

What Are The Main Types of Pedal Exercisers?

The best pedal exercisers in the market typically use the following pedaling mechanisms:

Magnetic

A magnetic pedal exerciser for the elderly typically requires less maintenance than friction-based mechanisms. They also produce a more quiet pedal motion.

Friction

Friction brakes prevent sliding. They create louder noises than a magnetic resistance system, but they also cost less.

Motorized

A motorized pedal exerciser for elderly individuals provides less resistance, so you’ll find its pedals easier to push.

Frequently Asked Questions

Check out what older adults typically ask when buying a pedal exerciser for seniors for the first time:  

Does using a pedal exerciser burn more calories than walking?

Cycling on a desk bike pedal exerciser burns more calories than walking. An adult male weighing 135 lbs. burns about 75 calories walking at a steady 3.0 mph pace for 20 minutes but burns 120+ calories cycling on a stationary pedal exerciser for 20 minutes at a steady 5.0 mph pace. Note that the exact calories burned differ based on body types.

How often should seniors exercise a day?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that seniors strive for 150 minutes of light to moderate exercise every week. Do no more than around five 30 minute-sessions, or you might get injured.

What exercises can seniors do at home?

Seniors can do a wide range of whole-body routines even without exercise bikes. Some great ways to work the upper and lower body muscles simultaneously include brisk walking, yoga, pilates, and jumping jacks.

Overall, getting a desk bike can help older adults maintain a healthy lifestyle. Place it near your home office or couch so that you can do a quick, low-impact workout any time you’re free. 

For best results, consider getting upper body exercise equipment as well. A pair of resistance bands or one-pound dumbbells will help you perform more advanced workouts targeting the arms and legs.

Are pedal exercisers too easy? Senior Strong can help! Ramp up your exercise routines with the following safe yet challenging workout programs.

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