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|Frame: 5 years
Parts: 1 year
Most recumbent bikes are designed to provide a light cardio workout, focusing on the leg muscles, while providing extra comfort for your back. However, there are recumbent bike models equipped with a “workout station” for the arms as well. In other words their handlebars can also spin, providing some resistance and various workouts for the arms. One of the models offering this type of construction is the Stamina Elite Total Body.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 52L x 24W x 49H inches (132L x 61W x 124.5 H cm)
- Assembled weight: 121 lbs (55 kg)
- Max. weight capacity: 250 lbs (113.3 kg)
- Handlebars: Mobile and stationary
- Seat: 4-way adjustable
- Pedals: With straps
- Resistance: Magnetic
- Fitness meter: Distance, time, speed, calories, pulse
- Warranty: Frame 5 years / Parts 1 year
Like most exercise bikes, this Stamina model features a frame made of steel tubing. The only plastic parts in its construction are the flywheel and crank guards, the base caps, and the console casing. All steel parts are double coated with corrosion-resistant, silver paint, this being the only color available for now.
The main frame of the bike is made of two pieces. The rear piece (which holds the seat frame) slides into the front piece, being secured with two bolts. Their joint is pretty solid though; you can be sure that the frame won’t wobble at the middle in any way.
The bike’s frame does not fold. However, it doesn’t have a very large footprint either. It only takes 52″L x 24″W (132 x 61 cm) of floor space, and thus it should fit with no problem even in a small room. Also, it doesn’t require a lot of clearance on the sides, in order to pedal safely.
The assembled bike is rather heavy though. It weighs 121 lbs (55 kg). However, the front base integrates small wheels, which facilitate its transport once it’s assembled. By lifting its rear base and leaning it onto its front wheels, you will basically lift less than half its weight. Thus, relocating it after you’ve finished your workout shouldn’t be a problem.
The rear base integrates two adjustable stabilizers with rubber caps. There’s also another stabilizer attached to the rear part of the frame, right next to its connection point to the front part. Evidently, these elements will help you achieve maximum stability for the bike, so it won’t move when you exercise. The front base doesn’t integrate stabilizers though, only the plastic cover caps.
The seat and backrest of the Stamina Elite Total Body recumbent exercise bike feature contoured padding, in order to provide maximum comfort and excellent lumbar support. The thickness of the padding varies between 2 and 3 inches. The upholstery on both seat and backrest is made of durable vinyl material.
Both the seat and backrest are attached to a frame made of steel tubing, designed to support users up to 250 lbs (113.3 kg). The seat assembly is 4-way adjustable, meaning that it can slide closer or farther in relation to the pedals, but also up and down. Its vertical adjustment features 4 positions, offering a total adjustment span of approx. 6″ (15 cm). Differently put, this Stamina exercise bike is designed to accommodate comfortably, users between 4’8″ and 6’5″ (142 – 196 cm).
One last aspect to be mentioned regarding this bike’s seat assembly, is the fact that the backrest is non-adjustable. It will move up / down or fore to aft along with the seat, but you cannot adjust its angle, or its height independently.
This exercise bike features two sets of handlebars: stationary and mobile. The stationary handlebars are attached to the seat assembly. They feature rubber foam padding, and integrate stainless steel pulse sensors.
On the other hand, the front handlebars are mobile, to provide additional workouts for your arms. These handlebars rotate both ways, however they’re not independent from one another. The rotation motion of this handlebar assembly can provide some resistance, but only as long as you don’t rotate the pedals. Once you begin pedaling as well, the resistance on the handlebars will be nullified. Also, resistance for the mobile handlebars is provided only when your rotate them forwards, and not in reverse.
The rotating handlebars can be attached to their axle in opposite direction from one another, or in the same direction, depending on the workouts you want to execute. As a general idea, these handlebars can provide workouts which focus on your forearms, triceps and deltoid muscles. They’re aimed at helping you tone your arm muscles and bolster your overall aerobic training, but not to build an important muscle mass.
Resistance and drive
The Stamina Elite Total Body recumbent bike features a magnetic resistance system, involving a magnetic flywheel. This flywheel weighs approx. 18 lbs (8 kg), offering a smooth and steady pedaling motion. The flywheel is connected to the resistance knob on top of the plastic enclosure via a steel cable. As you turn the knob, the magnet will move closer or farther in relation to the metallic element in the flywheel, generating more or less drag.
The tension knob has 8 distinctive levels of resistance specified on it. The resistance levels between 1-6 offer pretty light workouts, while the 7-8 levels provide a superior challenge. But as a general idea, this exercise bike is not made for intense workouts. It’s a bike for light aerobic training, and for recovery training.
This Stamina recumbent bike uses two V-Ribbed, heavy-duty belts for its drive system, a longer one which connects the mobile handlebar’s pulley to the flywheel, and a shorter one for the pedals pulley connection. Thus, the bike’s operation is extremely quiet, which makes it perfectly suitable for apartment use. You can be sure that you won’t bother the neighbors or other members of the household when you exercise. Also, since it’s a belt-driven bike, the lubrication of the transmission is not necessary.
The crankset of the bike uses a fairly large pulley, approx. 10″ (25 cm) in diameter. The pulley is covered on the outside with a set of plastic covers. The crank arms of the bike, although they’re made of solid steel, they most definitely won’t support the entire weight of the user, such as a spin bike for example. This is a recumbent bike, made exclusively for seated workouts.
Finally, standard pedals are supplied with this bike. They’re made of heavy-duty nylon material, also integrating adjustable straps.
Although it’s not an advanced one, the fitness meter supplied with the Stamina Elite Total Body exercise bike can still offer a little bit more than a basic bike computer. It does not have a database of preloaded workouts, such as the Nautilus R616 or Ironman X-Class 410, for example. However, it does offer the possibility to select targets for your workout time, distance, pulse and calories. Evidently, it can track distance traveled, time, speed, calories, pulse. Distance is measured in increments of 0.1 miles, while speed is measured in MPH. The unit doesn’t have an Odometer function.
You can choose to view any of the aforementioned workout metrics on screen at all times. However, the fitness meter unit does have a SCAN function which automatically scans all these values, displaying each one on screen for 6 seconds.
The digits on the display are fairly large, easy to read. However, the display it’s not backlit. Therefore, in a darker room, or in direct sunlight, the screen may be a bit difficult to read.
The meter unit is easy to operate. It features 5 buttons: MODE, RESET, ENTER, UP and DOWN. MODE is used to scan through the values on screen, UP / DOWN are used for setting up your time, distance, pulse or calories target goals, while ENTER is used for their final selection. Needless to say RESET will reset all the values to zero.
Last but not least, since the bike features a mechanical magnetic resistance system and does not require to be connected to a power circuit, the console is battery powered. It requires 2-AA batteries.
Assembly and Maintenance
The most problematic parts of the bike, such as the magnetic resistance system, pulleys, handlebar post and console, come already assembled. Thus, when it comes to assembly, you only need to attach the rear side of the frame to the main frame after you’ve connected the pulse sensor cable, attach the base stabilizer bars, then mount the seat frame, the seat and the backrest, mobile handlebars, and finally the pedals. The whole task shouldn’t take more than an hour. A hard copy of the manual supplied provides comprehensive assembly instructions. Also, all the tools required for assembly are included.
When it comes to maintenance, there’s nothing much required. Basically, all you need to do it check the bike’s joints from time to time to make sure the bolts still hold them tight. Also, make sure to remove any moisture or perspiration from the frame, and especially from the console.
- Sturdy frame, appealing design;
- Small footprint;
- Padded seat and backrest, with contoured design, for maximum comfort;
- 4-way adjustable seat, the bike being able to accommodate users between 4’8″ and 6’5″.
- Two sets of handlebars, stationary and mobile;
- Pulse sensors integrated in the stationary handlebars;
- 8 levels of mechanical magnetic resistance;
- Fitness meter included, offering the possibility to setup targets for your workout time, distance, calories and pulse.
- Smooth and quiet operation, suitable for apartment use;
- Easy to assemble;
- Very little maintenance required.
- No bottle holder;
- No reading / tablet rack;
- Only 250 lbs max weight capacity.
The Stamina Elite Total Body is a recumbent exercise bike which offers quite some diversity when it comes to possible workouts, due to its rotating handlebars. It’s a model with manual magnetic resistance, designed for light cardio and recovery workouts, great for anyone who wants to tone legs and arms muscles, re-gain or maintain cardiovascular shape, build stamina, and even lose weight. It features excellent ergonomic factors, as well as a fitness meter with goal setting possibilities, to help track your progress. It’s not exactly one of the most affordable recumbent bikes out there, but due to its versatility, durability and overall quality, it’s definitely safe to say it stands up to its price.