After a year of regular Peloton cycling, I want to provide a comprehensive, unbiased review of my experience with the popular exercise bike. As an avid spin class fan, I was intrigued by the Peloton but wondered if it lived up to the hype. Below I detail the pros and cons after extensive personal use.
Overview of the Peloton Bike
The Peloton bike is a stationary, indoor cycling bike combined with a large HD touchscreen for streaming live and on-demand classes. It aims to provide a convenient, engaging spin class experience at home.
- Sleek design with carbon steel frame and near-silent magnetic resistance
- 24” HD touchscreen with live & on-demand classes
- Output metrics – cadence, resistance, calories burned, leaderboard
- Clip-in pedals compatible with spin shoes
- Subscription provides unlimited class access
- Bike: $1,445
- Delivery & setup: $250
- Spin shoes: $125
- Monthly subscription: $44
So you’re looking at an initial investment of about $1,900 upfront. The monthly subscription provides unlimited access to classes.
Below I break down my experience across key factors for those considering a Peloton bike purchase.
Peloton Bike Setup & Delivery
Getting the bike delivered and set up was straightforward. I scheduled a 4-hour window for delivery and the Peloton team arrived on time. They carefully maneuvered the bike to the ideal spot and got it fully set up and connected to WiFi in under 30 minutes.
The team was professional and courteous, providing guidance on getting started and answering all my questions before leaving. The process was quick and hassle-free.
Verdict: Seamless delivery and setup process.
Design & Build Quality
The Peloton bike features a modern, minimalist design constructed with quality materials. The frame uses commercial-grade carbon steel for durability. All components felt sturdy and well-made.
The bike looks sleek in any space with its compact footprint. The near-silent magnetic resistance allows for smooth, quiet riding.
The seat and handlebars are adjustable to accommodate riders of different heights. I appreciated having some customization options here.
Verdict: Excellent build quality with a sleek, compact design. Fully adjustable for comfort.
Display & Sound System
The 24” HD touchscreen display is bright and crisp for easy class viewing. The sound system provides clear audio from the instructors without being overly loud.
You can connect Bluetooth headphones or external speakers for a more immersive experience during intense ride sessions. But the built-in speaker and microphone work well for basic use.
Having the display directly on the bike makes it convenient to follow along with classes. The touchscreen is very responsive when making selections or adjusting resistance.
Verdict: Vibrant HD display and decent sound system built into the bike. Easy to follow classes.
Peloton Classes & Instructors
The highlight of the Peloton bike is definitely the classes. With the subscription, you get unlimited access to thousands of live and on-demand cycling classes. There are also strength, yoga, meditation and other classes if you want cross-training.
Peloton offers many class types to suit your needs:
- Live classes throughout the day
- On-demand – access any class 24/7
- Low impact, beginner level to very advanced
- Class lengths range from 10 to 90 minutes
- Variety of music genres and themed rides
They also have training programs like “Discover Your Power Zones” and “Build Your Strength” to help you improve over time.
Peloton has over 35 instructors, each with their own teaching style. You’ll find motivational coaches, strict drill sergeants, and encouraging support riders. Try different instructors to find your favorites.
I personally like Robin Arzon for HIIT & Tabata rides, Alex Toussaint for rhythm-driven classes, and Cody Rigsby for the entertainment factor. But all instructors are great at what they do.
Verdict: Extensive class variety with phenomenal instructors makes the Peloton addicting and fun.
Streaming Quality & Reliability
I’ve found the class streaming over WiFi to be extremely reliable with zero buffering issues. Video and audio quality are consistently crisp over my home network.
Even when others are streaming video or gaming nearby, I haven’t experienced any lag or quality drops during Peloton rides. This seems to validate their claim of broadcasting studio classes via a dedicated network.
The system is very stable and connectivity issues appear to be rare based on my experience. Just be sure your WiFi signal is strong near the Peloton bike.
Verdict: Rock solid streaming quality for uninterrupted ride sessions.
Peloton Membership App Features
The Peloton membership app is packed with extra features to enhance your experience:
Profile & Metrics
Your member profile shows all your workout history and performance metrics. It’s motivating to track your progress over time.
Challenges & Achievements
Challenges like “Homecoming Bingo” encourage you to explore different class types. You also earn digital badges for milestones like 100th ride.
See how you stack up against other members in real-time during live classes. Filter by followers or overall.
Schedule & Favorites
Bookmark favorite instructors and classes. Schedule upcoming workouts and get reminders.
Follow friends for motivation. Cheer and high five others live during rides.
Verdict: Robust app with many features that foster a sense of community. Provides data tracking & accountability.
Bike Adjustability & Comfort
Finding the right bike fit is important for both comfort and performance. The Peloton bike is fully adjustable:
- Handlebars move up/down and fore/aft
- Seat adjusts vertically and horizontally
- Can accommodate 4’11” to 6’4” inseam lengths
It was easy to dial in the perfect position. The bike felt stable and comfortable for long rides. The seat cushioning was surprisingly decent once broken in.
Having clip-in pedals allows you to pedal efficiently. Cycling shoes are recommended but you can ride with sneakers using toe cages.
Verdict: Fully adjustable for riders of all sizes. Secure pedals and decent cushioning.
Accessories & Add-Ons
Peloton offers a range of accessories and extras:
- Weights – 1lb, 2lb, 3lb dumbbells for strength training
- Heart rate monitor – tracks and displays your BPM during rides
- Bike mat – protects floors from sweat and adds cushioning
- Bike package – includes shoes, weights, headphones, heart rate monitor
- Apparel – fitness clothes & gear with the Peloton logo
I purchased the bike mat which helps stabilize the bike and reduce noise. The heart rate monitor also provides helpful metrics.
The weights and apparel weren’t must-haves for me. But many members enjoy the branded gear and full accessory setup.
Verdict: Optional accessories available – bike mat is recommended.
Peloton Warranty & Service
Peloton provides reassuring warranty coverage for the bike:
- Frame – lifetime warranty
- Mechanical & electrical components – 1 year warranty
- Touchscreen – 1 year warranty
I haven’t needed repairs in my first year. But it’s good to know replacement parts and technical support are available if needed.
Owners outside of Peloton’s service area can pay $250 for expert assembly and troubleshooting guidance online.
Verdict: Strong warranty policy provides peace of mind.
Is Peloton Worth the Cost?
Considering the price, is the Peloton bike worth investing in compared to cheaper spin bikes? Here are the key factors to weigh:
Pros of Peloton
- Convenient studio workout experience at home
- Extensive class variety from elite instructors
- Motivating metrics and live leaderboards
- Thousands of on-demand classes to suit your schedule
- Reselling retains value if selling within 1-3 years
Cons of Peloton
- Higher upfront investment of ~$1900
- Ongoing $44 monthly subscription
- Requires space for bike, floor protection, and spin shoes
- Locked into their class platform – no third party apps
Cheaper Spin Bike Considerations
Cheaper stationary bikes from brands like Schwinn and Sunny Health & Fitness offer solid indoor cycling for ~$500-800.
But you miss out on the polished class content, real-time tracking and community engagement of Peloton. Tablet attachments help add some functionality, but the experience isn’t fully integrated.
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Resale value also tends to be lower for budget spin bikes compared to the in-demand Peloton.
For many, the immersive Peloton experience justifies the higher price over basic stationary bikes. But it depends on your budget and how often you anticipate riding.
Verdict: Justifiable splurge for frequent riders valuing the premier content and connectivity.
Peloton Bike Review Conclusion
1 year later, I continue to love riding with Peloton. The motivating leaderboard competitions, phenomenal instructors, and ongoing class additions keep workouts exciting.
The bike itself retains its quality and comfort. I haven’t experienced any mechanical issues or needed repairs.
For those seeking a convenient, interactive indoor cycling option, Peloton delivers an unparalleled experience. The bike cost is justifiable for regular riders given the unlimited class access, quality construction, and strong resale value.
While a significant investment upfront, the engaging classes and quantified metrics keep me riding consistently – ultimately helping maximize the value over time. One year in, I’d highly recommend the Peloton bike to anyone considering the splurge.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Peloton Bike
Q: Does the Peloton bike require a monthly subscription?
Yes, a Peloton All-Access Membership is required to access the live streaming and on-demand classes. This costs $44/month in the US. You can pause or cancel anytime.
Q: Can you use the Peloton bike without the subscription?
The bike can be ridden without the membership, but you won’t have access to any of the class content, performance tracking, or online features. You would just be riding the bike as a manual stationary bike without the integrated media.
Q: Does Peloton offer financing for their bike?
Yes, Peloton offers financing options to pay for the bike over time. This includes 0% APR for up to 43 months or low monthly payments.
Q: How much space do you need for a Peloton bike?
Peloton recommends at least 6 feet x 4 feet for clearance on all sides of the bike. Many owners are able to fit it in smaller spaces or corners. Just ensure you have enough room to safely get on, off, and ride the bike.
Q: Can you use regular workout shoes with Peloton?
The Peloton pedals are compatible with toe cages to allow regular sneakers. But cycling shoes with cleats are recommended for the best power transfer and safety. The shoes clip securely into the pedals for optimal performance.
Q: Does Peloton offer any discounts on their bike?
Discounts are occasionally offered for the bike, accessories, or apparel. Check their sales page or look for seasonal promotions around holidays. Referral codes from current members may also be available for $100 off.