Sitting upright on a folding exercise bike can add strain and be painful on back and the sit bones especially on a bike type seat without support for even a short period of time.
A folding exercise bike with backrest or support can certainly help to make for a more comfortable time on it and remove some if not all the pain so you can get in some low impact cardio for more activity/exercise in your life to help with your health by burning calories and getting in shape.
If you can’t sit on a bike without feeling pain or a high level of discomfort then it is unlikely to get used and then it’s not worth having it.
In looking for the best folding exercise bikes with backrest looked at the following criteria to ensure they were good bikes overall not just that they had a back support. It’s little point buying a bike that breaks soon after you buy it or doesn’t feel safe.
Durable and Stable. The bikes need to be able to hold you steady as your pedal and be able to do this without breaking down.
Ease Of Assembly. The bike should be easy to put together with not too many parts making it a huge project in itself
Easy to Fold and Transport. Bringing out of storage or putting away needs to be straightforward and not be too hard so it doesn’t put too much strain on the back.
Computer Monitor. This should be able to help you monitor your performance and the numbers should be easy to read
Noise. There should be very little noise so when exercising it doesn’t interfere with watching the TV or disturb others
Variable Resistance. There needs to various resistance levels starting from easy (almost none) to more challenging to fit with your level of fitness. The changes between levels needs to smooth
Low Impact Smooth Pedaling Motion. The bikes I’ve included in the list here have a smooth motion until you get to level 7 – 8 on their resistance where they start to pulse – speeding up when you push and slowing down as you move across the top of the stroke.
Exerpeutic 400 XL Folding Recumbent Exercise Bike
You use this bike in a semi recumbent position with your feet out in front of you and lean on the backrest for support. The backrest is at a slight backwards angle that can’t be adjusted.
It’s easy on the back and sit bones (for most people) as well as the knees. There are people who report back they’ve used it successfully as part of their rehab program (on doctors advice).
The seat height is between 24 and 26 inches from the ground depending on the height adjustment. It can accommodate users between the heights of 5ft 2 ins and 6 ft 2 ins and up to maximum weight of 300 lbs.
Customers like the stability and build of the bike. They find they get a smooth low impact exercise that they can use when and where they want. Read the full review here.
FitDesk FDX 2.0 Desk Folding Exercise Bike
This bike also comes with a desk that you can use to put a laptop on or a keyboard on it so you can play video games or work while you exercise. You can sit upright or lean back on to the backrest (the angle can be changed slightly) as the desk does move and backwards/forwards for the most comfortable fit.
It can be a little harder to get on to the bike as you do need to be able to lift your leg over 24 feet to get over the x-bar, some people use a small stool to help with this.
It can be adjusted to fit people between the heights of 4ft 10 ins and 6 ft 5 ins, with a maximum user weight of 300 lbs.
Customers find the bike provides a good sturdy and stable basis for their rides and like the desk feature to be able to do two things at once. On the most part they find the seat comfortable and it gives good support to their back. The full review can be found here