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Indoor vs Outdoor Cycling

Indoor vs Outdoor Cycling

Posted by Kitty on

Indoor vs Outdoor Cycling, why choose one over the other? Let's explore the differences, benefits and disadvantages as well as some of the surprising things they have in common.


Outdoor: There are unlimited differences in the type of outdoor bike you choose to ride. BMX, fixie, road, cyclocross, electric, cruisers, cargo, trikes, unicycles, etc. Combine this with the different brakes, derailleurs, chains, pedals, seats, colors, spokes, lights...the accessories and parts are endless in its variety. One of the most fun aspects of being a cyclist is the shopping!

Indoor: There are quite a few different models of indoor cycles so there's that. Variety comes into play with indoor cycling with the different positions you use to change up the routine. Pushups, popcorn jumps, hovers, all are part of different exercises you can do on an indoor bike to change up the exercise routine.

Outcome: Outdoor cycling has more variety, more options for you and your bike.



Outdoor: Difficulty depends on the terrain, weather conditions and your pace.

Indoor: Cycling in place will seem more difficult because there is less to distract you. You'll also be cycling under consistent conditions so you'll be using the same muscles again and again.

Outcome: Indoor cycling could be more difficult simply because you are doing the same thing in a closed space over and over again. Outdoor cycling provides constant stimulation in terms of terrain, and scenery.


Outdoor: Weather conditions vary depending on where you bike. Traffic, road work, construction, all are variables that can get in the way of a nice ride. Maintenance on your bike can become a hassle if you don't take care of your bike or if you have a bike that keeps breaking down.

Indoor: No need to worry about weather, crazy drivers, unsafe road conditions. The bike stays in one place whether you're on it or not.

Outcome: Indoor cycling is more convenient regarding weather, availability and traffic.



Outdoor: Cycling outdoors exercises a variety of different muscles, trains your reaction reflexes and keeps your mind busy. Your workout depends on how much you push yourself.

Indoor: Cycling indoors exercises a specific set of muscles for a period of time and is mentally exhausting because of the demands put on you in a short duration, you'll definitely always get a good workout with a high heart rate.

Outcome: Draw.

Summary: Indoor cycling is consistent, safe and convenient for those who want a quick, fast paced workout. Outdoor cycling has more options, can be used for exercise or relaxation, and exercises more than just your muscles. Outdoor cycling wins! (Obviously) Now get your bike, or get a bike and get out there!!

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