Kettler GIRO R Indoor Recumbent Cycling Trainer
|Kettler GIRO R|
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Parts: 2 years
The Kettler GIRO R is not one of the most affordable recumbent bikes. It also does not have a sound system or a wide array of workout programs such as the Schwinn 230 MY16 or the AFG 7.3AR. But on the other hand, it does offer a solid construction and excellent comfort factors compared to other recumbent trainers. It’s a bike with motorized magnetic resistance, designed for light to medium cardio workouts, well-engineered and with superior aesthetics.
Although it’s not an exercise bike with all the bells and whistles, there’s still a lot to be said about this model. In this review, we’ll try to cover each and every important aspect regarding it. But before we proceed to that, there’s one important thing to be mentioned. This is the GIRO P 7629-000 model, also known as the Kettler “Advantage”, not to be mistaken for the more expensive model, Kettler “Golf”.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 67L x 26W x 46H inches (170L x 65W x 117H cm)
- Assembled weight: 115 lbs (52 kg)
- Flywheel weight: 17.6 lbs (8 kg)
- Supported weight: 285 lbs (129 kg)
- Handlebars: With pulse sensors
- Seat: Adjustable, 13 positions
- Pedals: Weighted, with straps
- Drive mechanism: Belt
- Resistance: Motorized, magnetic, 16 levels
- Console: 8 preset programs
- Warranty: Frame lifetime / Parts 2 years
The Kettler GIRO R is built around a high-tensile steel, one-piece chassis; all the steel tubes in its construction are finished with a corrosion and scratch resistant powder coating, the only exceptions being the seat adjustment rail and the crank arms, which have a chrome finish (also corrosion resistant). The powder coating is white in color, this being the only color available for the GIRO R model. The construction of the frame also includes several plastic parts, but most of them have only a cosmetic or protective role, without altering the machine’s overall sturdiness.
This exercise bike is fairly large, compared with other fitness bikes. It’s 67″ (170 cm) long, and 26″ (65 cm) wide, and on top of that, it requires at least two feet of clearance on each side, and foot at the rear, for safe and unhindered operation. The highest point of the bike is given by the top of the backrest, which reaches approx. 46″ (117 cm).
The frame features a step-through design, making it easy to take position on the seat, an aspect that can be a plus for physically impaired users.
This Kettler exercise bike is also fairly heavy, weighing 115 lbs (52 kg), almost three times more than the average mountain bike. This weight is actually a plus, as it renders it very stable; you can be sure that it won’t rock or wobble when you pedal, even if you engage in a more demanding workout routine. On top of that, its rear base tube is equipped with adjustable levelers, with rubber caps, which deliver an excellent grip to the floor. This being said, you don’t have to place the bike on a rubber mat.
Despite its weight, handling and moving the fully assembled machine isn’t difficult, as its front base tube features a set of transport wheels. By leaning it on its wheels, you’ll basically handle less than 50% of its total weight. Thus, its relocation shouldn’t be a problem for anyone.
Seat, handlebars and other parts
This Kettler recumbent bike features a seat with superior ergonomics. It is approx. 18″ (45 cm) wide, has a contoured surface and a thick layer of padding, to deliver the required comfort for the longest rides. The adjustment rail of the seat is slanted, in order to adapt better to the user’s height. It has 13 adjustment holes; therefore, the seat can accommodate comfortably users between 5’0″ – 6’6″ (153 – 198 cm). Also, the seat assembly (and all the frame), is rated for a maximum user weight of 285 lbs (129 kg).
The backrest of the seat is padded and contoured just as the seat. It does not adjust independently from the seat and does not recline as the backrest of the Body-Solid B5R, for example. Both seat and backrest feature highly durable upholstery, made of synthetic, waterproof material.
The bike has two sets of handlebars, one on the console mast, and one connected to the seat assembly. The console mast is generously curved towards the seat. Thus, when using the front handlebar, your positioning on the bike won’t be too awkward as for other models.
The recumbent handlebars move along with the seat on its adjustment rail. Their angle or position is non-adjustable, though. They integrate stainless steel pulse sensors. Both mast and seat handlebars have rubber-foam covers, in order to provide optimal comfort and a secure grip.
The pedals supplied with this exercise bike are made of durable PVC material, featuring a self-righting, weighted design. They’re also equipped with adjustable straps, with 6 positions each, in order to provide perfect stability for the feet during pedaling.
Drive and resistance systems
The Kettler Advantage GIRO P recumbent bike features a quiet, almost silent belt drive, powered by a heavy-duty v-belt, designed for many years of use. It integrates a mid-range steel flywheel, weighing 17.6 lbs (8 kg), flywheel with a balanced structure, which delivers a consistent momentum and a steady feel. The crank arms are made of solid steel. But even though the crankset is extremely durable, stand-up pedaling routines are not recommended. It’s, after all, a recumbent bike made for seated workouts only.
This exercise bike allows reverse pedaling. But since it’s not a road bike, when pedaling in reverse the resistance remains constant, given by the selected resistance level on the console. Also, if you engage in a reverse pedaling workout, the console continues to track your workout metrics.
In terms of resistance, this recumbent cycle is with a motorized, magnetic resistance system. This means that its resistance can only be adjusted from the console, and the machine must be connected to a power circuit. A power adapter is supplied with the bike, adapter which requires a standard 110-120V U.S. electrical outlet. The adapter jack plugs into the bike above its front base.
The resistance mechanism consists of a magnetic element and a servo motor. As you adjust the resistance from the console, the servo motor will shift the magnets’ pull, increasing the drag of the flywheel. The bike offers 16 levels of resistance, designed for users of all levels. The 1-3 resistance settings promote light workouts, great for users with disabilities or elderly users, while the highest (15-16) resistance levels are designed to simulate a steep climb, perfect for stamina, strength, and cardio training routines of higher intensity.
Just as for other Kettler bikes, such as the AXOS P upright bike, the console doesn’t have too many features. It does not integrate a sound system, cooling fan, nor does it have online connectivity such as the console of the ProForm 325 CSX. But nonetheless, it’s equipped with a multi-panel LCD display, which also integrated blue LED backlight, offering excellent readability. The display will show RPM, speed, distance, time, kcalories and pulse. Distance can be calculated in both kilometers and miles, while speed can be shown in MPH or km/h.
The console unit can track your pulse via the metallic sensors integrated into the lower handlebars. It also has a port for a cable or wireless HR transmitter, however, it does not incorporate an HR receiver for Polar chest straps.
The unit has 8 preset, grid-based fitness programs. These cover diverse workouts, some designed for intense cardio, other for intervals, and others for light cardio. Needless to say, when using one of the onboard workout programs, the bike will automatically adjust resistance.
A recovery function is also available. This function rates your performance based on your pulse at the end of your workout, determining your level of fitness.
The console unit is not difficult to operate. It draws power from the power source, via the adapter (does not require batteries). The resistance is adjusted from the turn-knob in the middle, just as for the Kettler AXOS elliptical trainer. The programs have their own key, and once you press the Programs key, you scroll through them using the knob. The Recovery function also has its own key. And finally, there’s a Reset key which clears all the console values to zero.
Assembly and Maintenance
The assembly of this exercise bike is far from being difficult. Its resistance mechanism comes pre-assembled from the factory. Therefore, you only have to mount the bike’s body on the base tubes, add the seat, the backrest, the low handlebars, the console mast, the front handlebars, the console and the pedals. This shouldn’t take more than an hour. All the tools required for assembly are included with the bike, while the manual provides excellent instructions for the task.
Maintenance requires keeping the bike dust free, and periodically check for loose bolts and parts. The internal parts are pre-lubricated from the factory, and should not require any further lubrication for a long period of time.
- Sturdy construction, with a user capacity of 285 lbs;
- Step-thru frame design;
- 2-inch padding on seat and backrest for optimal comfort;
- Adjustable seat, with 13 positions, for users between 5’0″ – 6’6″;
- Adjustable base stabilizers;
- Transport wheels;
- Automatic, magnetic resistance, with 16 available settings;
- Multi-panel display, with LED backlight, showing all the workout statistics at once;
- 8 pre-set programs;
- Recovery function;
- Pulse reading capable, with sensors integrated into the low handlebars;
- Pedals with adjustable straps;
- Narrow Q Factor for a comfortable positioning of the feet;
- Smooth and quiet drive;
- Basically maintenance free;
- Excellent warranty.
- No sound system;
- No cooling fan;
- No online connectivity;
- No tablet holder.
The Kettler GIRO R is a mid-range recumbent cycling trainer, featuring an extremely solid construction, motorized, magnetic resistance with 16 distinctive levels, and a console with 8 preset workouts. It’s an excellent bike for light to medium cardio workouts, for building stamina and strength, for toning muscles, for interval training, and for rehab training. It’s not exactly a cheap exercise bike, and also lacks several amenities that other models in this price range have. But on the other hand, it offers superlative quality in all of its components, internal and external. Therefore, we can safely say that it has a decent price/value ratio.