RAD Portable Magnetic Bike Trainer
Last updated date: November 8, 2021
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We looked at the top Bike Trainers and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Bike Trainer you should buy.
Update as November 8, 2021:
Checkout The Best Bike Trainer for a detailed review of all the top bike trainers.
A quiet internal magnet creates the resistance for this trainer, which is light and portable — it can be folded down like an ironing board for transport. It's stable, sturdy and has extra wide legs. We found it to be easy to set up, right out of the box.
In our analysis of 54 expert reviews, the RAD Portable Magnetic Bike Trainer placed 15th when we looked at the top 15 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
From The Manufacturer
The MAG Trainer converts your bike into an indoor cycling trainer. It utilizes a state of the art magnet system which provides magnetic resistance. You can easily increase the resistance by shifting the gears on your bike! These are perfect for the beginner or the professional who wants to stay in shape all year long! This MAG Trainer is one of the quietest on the market–it is a premium quality unit. Now you can watch TV and ride your bike.
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Our Expert Consultant
Certified Personal Trainer, Health and Wellness Expert
Stephanie Mansour, host of “Step It Up with Steph” on public broadcasting, has been coaching women for over a decade on how to lose weight and make it last. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications with an emphasis on women’s studies and psychology from the University of Michigan. She holds certifications in life coaching, personal training, yoga and Pilates.
Overall Product Rankings
An Overview On Bike Trainers
If you’re training for an upcoming distance cycling event, the great outdoors isn’t always an option. A bike trainer lets you keep up your training indoors, whether the weather outside is clear or rainy, warm or cold. You can simply set a trainer up in an area of your home and use it with your outdoor bike, giving you those hours of practice you need every day.
But training isn’t the only use of a bike trainer. Bike trainers make a great alternative to stationary bikes, possibly even saving you some money if you already have a bike to use with it. You’ll get the same experience you’d get outdoors, especially if you choose a trainer with resistance settings. A stationary bike is different in a way you likely know if you’ve ever used one.
But not all trainers offer resistance settings. In recent years, magnetic resistance has become popular in bike trainers. Instead of using belts, these trainers pass electricity through magnets, with the electricity controlling how the magnets respond to each other, creating a smooth resistance that improves what you get out of your workout.
Stephanie Mansour, a certified personal trainer and the founder of fitness brand Step It Up With Steph, recommends bike trainers as great cardio tools for people who love to bike. Before making a bike trainer purchase, the first thing to consider, she says, is to ensure you actually enjoy biking.
“If you’re going to invest in a piece of cardio equipment, make sure that you actually enjoy doing that form of cardio,” she says.
Once you’re ready to start shopping, you should take a look at your tires and make sure you choose a trainer built for your type of bike. All trainers have a limit as to the bikes they’ll support. So if your cycle has unusually sized tires, you may find you have a tougher time finding a trainer that works with it. You’ll also need to look for a bike trainer with a sturdy base to avoid wobbling, especially if you plan to ride vigorously.
In addition to sturdiness, your bike trainer’s build also factors into how long it lasts, even with numerous hours of use. Most trainers are made to last but pay close attention to the materials that were used to put your trainer together. You may also want to consider what you’ll do with your trainer when it isn’t in use. Some trainers fold up easily so that you can tuck them away when you have company coming or simply want to keep your living spaces clear.
Chances are, noise will be a factor when you’re using your trainer, particularly if you live in an apartment or want to train while others are sleeping. Some trainers build in noise reduction technology to keep it to a minimum. However, if you have thicker tires, such as those seen on mountain bikes, you may find that some noise is emitted even with that technology.
Like most athletes in training, you probably want to track your progress using a smartphone app. To get that functionality with most bike trainers, you’ll need to invest in a third-party app. You also may want to spring for a stand that will mount your phone to your bike indoors. You probably won’t need one quite as sturdy as the type you’d need for mounting your phone for use outdoors.
The Bike Trainer Buying Guide
- The type of resistance is crucial if you’re training for an upcoming athletic event. Look for a model that offers six separate resistance settings. You can start your ride within the 1-2 range, getting the experience of riding on flat land. Push it to 3-4 for a slight incline, finally climbing to 5-6 to simulate the experience of tackling a steep hill.
- The Alpcour Magnetic Quick-Release Indoor Bike Trainer features magnetic resistance which more closely emulates the feeling you’ll get when you’re riding outside.
- When you’re riding indoors, noise is an important consideration. Opt for a bike trainer with a built-in noise reduction wheel to keep sound at a minimum.
- One factor upping the volume, no matter what bike trainer you choose, is the type of tires you have. Thick tires like those found on mountain bikes can boost the noise factor.
- Bike trainers are generally small, but they may need some assembly.
- When you’re ready to take your bike outdoors, you’ll want to be able to easily eject it from the trainer. Some models have a press-down lever that lets you grab and go in a matter of seconds.
- If you’re concerned about durability, your stand’s build will come into play. A model made from heavy-duty stainless steel will hold up after rigorous use.
- Another concern when looking at a trainer is stability. Some bike trainers maximize stability due to their sturdy, wide bases. This means no matter how fast you go or how much weight you put on it, you won’t have to deal with the inconvenience of it wobbling.
- Unless you plan to leave your bike in place when you’re not using it, storage is a consideration. The Alpcour Magnetic Quick-Release Indoor Bike Trainer folds up easily for storing when not in use.
- Weight is also a factor, especially if you plan to fold your trainer up and take it on the go. On the extreme end is the RAD Cycle Max Racer Magnetic Resistance Bike Trainer, which is 18.3 pounds.
- It’s important to consider capacity since some bike trainers have weight limits. Some models have been tested to handle up to 300 pounds.
- Tipping can be a problem with indoor trainers. Look for trainers that protect against that through the use of a skewer, which attaches to your rear wheel to stabilize things.
- To get that incline only found on outdoor hills, many consumers prop up the front using anything they can find, from phone books to bricks. For that reason, many trainers come with a riser that can provide that incline safely. Some models ship with a front-wheel riser block.
- It’s important to pay close attention to the size limits of the trainer you choose since not all trainers work with all bikes. You may need a bike trainer that will hold any road or mountain bike that has either a 26-inch to 28-inch or a 700c wheel.
- Some bike trainers are especially limited as they are designed for bikes that have a quick-release rear axle. They may also only fit 700c or 27-inch road bikes or 26-inch mountain bikes.
- Since trainers can vary in price, you may want to consider that as you’re weighing the various features. No matter what, you’re sure to find one that fits your budget.
- Although you won’t find most bike trainers connect up to smartphone apps automatically, there are third-party apps you can buy that will track your progress. You can also buy phone mounts for your own bike that you can use for mounting your phone while you’re using it inside.
- If you’re concerned about scratching up your floors, look for a bike mount that has rubber feet. Anti-slip rubber feet not only protect your floors but also stabilize your bike even if your floors are uneven.
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