What Muscles does an Air Bike Work?

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Air bikes are famous for delivering a killer workout that involves your entire body. But which muscles exactly are worked when using an air bike? You can find out this and more information about air bikes in this article.

Exercising on an air bike works all the major muscles in the upper and lower body. As you push and pull on the handles, your biceps, triceps, chest, back, and shoulders are engaged. Work on the pedals is done by the glutes, quads, calves, hamstrings, and hip flexors. Additionally, the abdominal muscles work to keep you in a stable position throughout the motion.

➥ When it comes to choosing an exercise bike if you’re at a crossroads between an air bike and a spin bike, then, we recommend, you have a look at the comparison between air bikes vs. spin bikes.

Muscles worked on an air bike

Pretty much all the major muscle groups of the body are engaged with the proper use of an air bike. These include the lower body muscles, upper body muscles, and core muscles. You can also target either the upper or lower body separately by choosing how you drive the motion – either with the pedals or with the handles.

Lower body muscles

This was quite obvious. In fact, the lower body muscles get worked the most. As you pedal, at different points of the motion different muscles are worked out. The quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, glutes, and hip flexors all work simultaneously to carry out the motion.

Upper body muscles

The moving handlebars are what make sure that your upper body does almost half the work. When you push on one handle, the triceps, chest, and part of the shoulder (front deltoids) of that side do the work. At the same time, you are pulling on the other side. On this side, the biceps, back, and part of the shoulder (rear deltoids) are working.

Core muscles

It may not seem like it, but even the core muscles are activated during a proper air bike workout. When you are pedaling and swinging the handles at high speeds, your abdominal and lower back muscles have to work constantly to make sure you do not fall off the machine. Hence, overall stability is improved.

Air bike

Air bike

Advantages of using an air bike

There are plenty of benefits that you get from an air bike. Because of these, air bikes are one of the most effective exercise machines available.

  1. Total body workout: As we have already discussed, the design of an air bike allows you to work the entire body. This leads to a far more effective and athletic workout than targeting a specific muscle group. Also, have a look at the benefits of using stationary bikes having moving handlebars.
  2. Boosts cardiovascular health: Cycling is an aerobic exercise as it gets your heart rate up. The same goes for cycling on an air bike. A Harvard study has shown that cycling leads to a healthier heart and consequently, fewer heart attacks or other coronary diseases.
  3. Prevents major health conditions: Other than heart-related problems, physical activities such as air cycling also reduces the likelihood of diabetes and high/low blood pressure. According to the National Cancer Institute, it can keep some types of cancers away as well.
  4. Helps in losing weight: At high intensities, you can burn up to 500 calories in just 30 minutes with an air bike. This high number is due to the fact that your whole body is working as opposed to just one part. Burning more calories means faster weight loss, given that you follow a proper diet.
  5. Improves mental condition: Working out causes your body to release endorphins. This chemical boosts your mood and reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression. Pushing through the fast-paced exercise also improves coordination and mental toughness.
  6. Muscle toning and strengthening: Exercising on an air bike can tone your muscles and get them into good shape. At high resistance levels, you will also get some strength build-up, especially in the lower body.
  7. Safe, low-impact exercise: An air bike is a joint-friendly machine due to the low impact level. Anyone, at any age, can use it. Not to mention, it is a lot safer than riding a bike outdoors where accidents can easily occur.
Air bike

Air bike

Air bike workout

Anyone can use an air bike. But not everyone uses it properly. Most people will usually just get on the machine and start pedaling away. However, the purpose of an air bike is to burn calories fast, and this is not the best way to do that. To get the most out of an air bike, you should do a HIIT-style workout. HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training and involves alternating periods of high intensity and low intensity/rest. This type of training is highly effective at burning calories during the workout and even for hours after. Here is a rough guideline to get you started with an air bike:

LevelEach RoundNo. of Rounds
BeginnerPedal and push/pull at 80-100 RPM for 30 seconds3
Cooldown at 30-40 RPM for 2-3 minutes
IntermediatePedal and push/pull at 80-100 RPM for 30 seconds5-7
Cooldown at 30-40 RPM for 60-90 seconds
AdvancedPedal and push/pull at 80-100 RPM for 30 seconds10
Cooldown at 30-40 RPM for 30 seconds

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Can beginners use an air bike?

Ans.: An air bike, like any stationary bike, can be used by nearly everyone. No matter your age or fitness level, you can adjust the workout to suit you. One of the top features of an air bike is that it has infinite levels of air resistance. The resistance increases the faster you pedal. Moreover, it delivers a low-impact workout. So, you can use an air bike without worrying about damaging your knees.

Q2. Should I get an air bike instead of a regular stationary bike?

Ans.: That depends on what kind of workouts you like doing. If you want a full-body workout then the air bike is the clear winner. Additionally, you will generally burn more calories with an air bike as your upper body is worked too. The problem with an air bike is that you cannot do high resistance workouts at low RPMs. So, for building leg strength, a stationary bike is better.

Q3. Are air bikes cheaper than other stationary bikes?

Ans.: Typically, air bikes are cheaper than other types of stationary bikes. This is because the drive system is a lot simpler. In a regular stationary bike, there is a heavy flywheel and magnets/electromagnets. In an air bike, there is a large fan instead. Also, most air bikes do not have a lot of console features. Both air bikes and stationary bikes can be found at around $200. However, the upper limit of air bike prices is much lower.


Hopefully, now you can see that an air bike is an excellent piece of equipment to exercise with. They are low-impact machines that allow you to burn plenty of calories in a shorter amount of time. All the while engaging both the upper and lower body muscles. If possible, you should definitely get one for your home. It is a great investment towards leading a healthier and more active lifestyle.

Dion Lewis

My name is Dion Lewis.I’ve been cycling since my childhood. When I was in high school, I started racing in our local competitions.In my college life, I took a part-time job in a bicycle shop and I learned how to repair and maintain bicycles professionally.Though I love racing, mountain biking is another thing I do frequently. My friends, neighbors, and colleagues treat me as an avid rider and take my suggestions while they plan for a new bike or bike gear.

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