This Exerpeutic 900xl vs Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike comparison puts these 2 bestselling recumbent exercise bikes up against each other.
With one of the bikes costing more than 2.5 times the other bike it is important to understand the differences between them.
It helps in deciding if the extra cost is justified for the additional features and benefits you get.
Otherwise you might pay for something you don’t really need for your personal fitness goals.
As both bikes are recumbent you sit in a reclining position with back support and have your legs out in front of you which is easier on your joints and back than with an upright bike.
Before checking out how the bikes differ here is a quick guide to them:
Exerpeutic 900 XL
It comes with 8 magnetic resistance levels that are controlled manually using a tension knob.
The drive and pedal provide a fluid pedaling motion that is gentle on the joints.
There is a basic console that measure speed, distance, time, calories and heart rate (when gripping the heart rate sensors in the handlebars).
This helps to give you feedback to let you know how you are going which is useful in keeping you motivated as you exercise.
Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike
It comes with 29 pre-set programs that range from easy to difficult so you can get the program you want for your fitness level. But you don’t have to use the pre-set ones you can come up with your own or just get on and use it setting the intensity (resistance) as you go.
It has 25 resistance levels that are controlled through the console. It goes from very easy to very hard in increments and the changes in levels are smooth.
The 13 lbs weighted flywheel and 3 piece crank provide a good strong and fluid pedaling motion that makes it very low impact helping to protect the joints.
The Differences – The Facts
I think the differences of the bikes have the most impact on choosing between them. There are a number of them as you might expect due to the price. I’ve listed the differences here along with explanations. (There is a side by side comparison at the bottom for further insight and information).
Resistance. As well as having more marked levels of resistance the Schwinn 270 goes up to where it is very difficult to push against. It starts with almost none and goes up incrementally. It can be used by beginners as well as those wanting very challenging workouts.
The Exerpeutic 900 XL also starts at very easy but only goes to moderately hard.
Drive/Flywheel. The Schwinn 270 has a 13 lb perimeter weighted flywheel which helps to pull the pedals through when the resistance gets harder to prevent it getting choppy, whereas with the Exerpeteutic you start to feel a pulsing pedaling motion at the top two levels of resistance.
Console. The Exerpeutic 900XL just measures time, distance, speed, calories and heart rate. The Schwinn 270 measures those as well as RPM and resistance level . It also has pre-set programs, separate user profiles and ability to track progress over time using a fitness account.
Fitness Account. You can upload your results to analyze and track to the Schwinn Connect fitness account and also myditnesspal.com with the Schwinn 270 for up to 4 separate user profiles. The Exerpeutic 900 Xl you need to keep a manual record and there is not the ability to have separate user profiles.
Preset Programs. The Schwinn 270 has 29 programs that you can use to work on your fitness and add variety and challenge to your workouts at the level you want. This includes ones you can set yourself. You’re not left there trying to figure out how to structure your workout on your own.
Accessories. The Schwinn 270 comes with a water bottle holder, speakers, personal electrics shelf and a 3 speed fan, whereas the Exerpeutic has none.
Bike Weight. The Schwinn 270 is heavier by 23.6 lbs. Both bikes have transport wheels at the front of the bike that support most of the weight making it fairly ease to move around.
Area. The Exerpeutic has a much smaller footprint at 22 by 54 ins against a footprint of 27 by 64 ins making it easier to store when not in use.
Height Range. Schwinn 270 caters for people between the height of 4ft 11 ins and 6 ft 3 ins compared to the Exerpeutic only goes down to 5 ft 3 ins.
Seat. The Schwinn 270 has a more comfortable seat and backrest based on customer feedback but both are relatively comfortable. Whether you find it comfortable is not really possible to predict as this is down to personal preference but many do find them easy on the sit bones and back.
Seat Adjustment. To fit the bike for different heights you adjust the horizontal position of the seat. To make the adjustment you need to get off the bike. For the Schwinn 270 you simply push down a lever and move the seat to the position and then pull lever up to hold it in place. The Exerpeutic is still fairly simple to do but involves 3 adjustment knobs so takes more effort and time to complete.
Heart Rate Sensor. The Schwinn 270 comes with pulse sensors in the handlebars and is also compatible with an in-coded Polar heart rate strap (which needs to be bought separately).
Power. The Exerpeutic takes 2 AA batteries to power the console. If the batteries are drained you can still workout and change the resistance you just can’t see the measures.
The Schwinn 270 needs to be plugged in for powering the console. If there is a power outage you can’t use the bike
What About The Price?
When I checked the Schwinn 270 was $286 more than the Exerpeutic 900 XL.
Which One Should I Buy?
There are a number of things to consider when choosing between these bikes. Here are the things I think are worth considering:
Height. If you are below 5ft 3ins you are going to struggle to reach the pedals when they are at the furthest point with the Exerpeutic 900 XL, so the Schwinn 270 will fit you down to 4 ft 11 ins without you needing to stretch.
Programs. Having workout programs for your fitness can make getting fit more enjoyable and it does help to keep you on track that you don’t get when you just get on and pedal especially if you are watching a movie.
Tracking Progress. With the ability to set up 4 user profiles and upload to a fitness account and myfitnesspal.com you can easily track your progress. This can help with motivation. If you want it makes it easier to share with friends to help in keeping you accountable.
Heart Rate Monitoring. If you want to monitor your heart rate to train in your heart rate zone (with or without programs) then the Schwinn 270 with its compatibility with an uncoded heart rate strap (to be bought separately) is a more reliable and accurate way to go, as the hand pulse sensors on all models of recumbent exercise bikes can be unreliable and you have to keep both hands in place at all times.
The Side By Side Comparison
The table below lists the features, dimensions and specifications of the Schwinn 270 and Exerpeutic 900 Xl which gives more insight to the bikes and is a quick way to see how they match up.
|Weighted Flywheel||No||13 lbs|
|Bike Weight||63 lbs||86.6 lbs|
|Max User Weight||300 lbs||300 lbs|
|Min User Height||5 ft 3 ins||4 ft 11 ins|
|Max User Height||6ft 3 ins||6 ft 3 ins|
|Use Dimensions||Height 34ins|
Width 22 ins
Length 54 ins
|Height 50 ins|
Width 27 ins
Length 64 ins
|Accessories||None||Water bottle holder|
3 speed fan
|Heart Rate Sensors||Yes||Yes|
|Crank||1 piece||3 piece|
|Heart Rate Sensor Type||Hand Pulse||Hand Pulse|
I hope you’ve now got all the information to decide on which bike is the right one for you. It would be great to hear your thoughts on how you see the bikes matching up.