Okay, cycling enthusiasts, who said the terrain could not come to Muhamad?
Indoor cycling is big now, and you can get a variety of home studio bikes to improve your cardiovascular exercises at home, work your legs, thighs, glutes, core, and upper body muscles for a sexy physique.
Among the top choice of home studio bikes are the Peloton and NordicTrack s22i.
These are two of the most solid home studio bikes in the market with inspiring trainers to boost your cardio workouts.
Both are high-tech home studio bikes paired with companion membership that grants access to a team of trainers and thousands of live and on-demand cycling classes.
So how do you choose between these two bikes?
Well, it all comes down to personal preferences.
The Peloton is a boutique fitness-oriented bike featuring manual incline and decline, silent magnetic resistance, and a 22-inch LCD touchscreen with real-time metrics and features that allow you to engage with a virtual community of true-believers through Live Classes and inject some music or even change the theme to spice up your workouts.
Get ready for some virtual competition and virtual high-fiving all the way!
The NordicTrack S22i
The NordicTrack s22i, on the other hand, features 24 levels of silent magnetic resistance, digital incline and decline, and a 22-inch touchscreen display.
And while the s22i’s riding experience includes both studio classes, popular road races, and off-roading, its iFit coaches are more specialized in providing one on one training experiences.
The s22i’s greatest selling point is its ability to incline, decline, or sprint according to your studio classes or terrain.
Here is a deep down look into the two indoor cycling bike designs’ defining features to guide your choice.
Peloton's Live & On-Demand Indoor Cycling Classes
You can live-stream boutique workout sessions from the Peloton studio in New York with other true believers.
The peloton community is a group of true believers and trainers that band together to support and encourage each other.
Peloton uses a leaderboard to create an atmosphere of competition. Trainers can call out individual members to provide encouragement and motivation.
You can filter the members by age, gender, and followers to choose who you ride with, and there are badges and T-shirts to commemorate to encourage you to hit your 100th ride.
You can also get stats on your heart rate, output, cadence, and resistance.
You also get engage in fun-challenges, workout to some instructor-selected playlist, or change it to suit your personality.
S22i's Studio Classes & Trainer-Led Adventure Rides
The s22i’s riding experience includes high energy boutique classes and off-roading through some virtually simulated mountains and trails.
Purchase of the s22i comes with a 1-year automatic membership with the NordicTrack iFit granting you free access to on-demand and live fitness classes at the comfort of your home.
S22i class options include:
S22i studio classes are HIIT-focused group sessions conducted by professionals to keep you motivated, focused, and working hard.
It’s a group session but expect something close to a one-on-one coach workout.
You may even have to get off the bike sometime for a full-body workout, and in other sessions, weights are used for hands-free cycling motion and to work the arms as well.
Ever wanted to ride the Tour de France, the s22i makes that possible from the comfort of your home studio.
The bike features +20 percent real-time incline and -10 percent decline that gives it the ability to simulate almost authentic road races.
This is a trainer-led multi-stage course. Select the length and difficulty that suits your grit.
Apart from the popular classic road races, you can also create your own routes using the google maps feature built into the iFit app.
You can go for something old, like the terrain you are used to, or something totally new from the world’s best cycling terrains. All will be saved and used to create your library.
This is a completely DIY ride; iFit trainers don’t get involved.
Trainer-led adventure rides
Trainer-led led global rides will take you across mountain paths, trails, and other scenic bike trails.
Expect to be led by pros through world-famous slopes and terrains in Australia, Italy, New Zealand, etc.
Throughout the session, they share knowledge of the various locations to keep you engaged.
iFit Trainers vs Peloton Trainers
Peloton trainers are successful fitness trainers in real life. They are more focused on enforcing a sense of community and a competitive spirit so they won’t hesitate to call individual members out to encourage, motivate, and keep them cycling.
Expect a lot of camaraderies -music-themed boutique classes and discussions to share knowledge and experiences. There are special events, including theme rides and in-store rides, to bring true-believers together.
iFit trainers, on the other hand, offer group classes too, but they are more focused on providing one on one workout experiences. This is a group of successful personal trainers, boutique fitness class leaders, and real bike race champions.
And while iFit sessions are not music-themed, they are still enjoyable as the trainer rides next to you, dropping motivational messages and showing you interesting locations along the way.
Similarities In Design
Both the Peloton and the s22i are high-tech bikes that feature horizontal and vertical adjustments, silent magnetic resistance, water bottle holders, speakers, and touch screen display that, among other things, includes performance metrics.
But that is all they have in common.
When it comes to subtle details, the s22i is loaded with extra features that make for goddamn exciting rides.
Differences in Specs
The Peloton is a 60 x 24 x 48 inches classic indoor cycling bike design featuring manually controlled magnetic resistance via a knob present on the crossbar.
The advantage of rider-controlled resistance is it suits those who want to feel in control of their workout sessions. The Peloton also features a non-swiveling 22-inch LCD screen. It also features Look Delta Clip-in pedals that go with special riding shoes.
There’s a holder on the bike for weights, but these are to be bought separately. Purchase of the Peloton bike also does not include free club membership, just access to the Peloton app.
The s22i is a 55 by 22 by 55 inches home studio bike with inertia enhanced flywheel and ride controlled resistance.
The advantage of ride-controlled resistance is how the bike automatically syncs with the instructor’s or selected ride incline, resistance, and decline.
It is the best choice for those who want to feel the push from their trainers or the ride experience.
You can also opt-out of the real-time trainer resistance control and manually adjust the resistance via the touchscreen or controls present on the handlebars.
The s22i also features an HD swivel touchscreen that allows the user more view of the trainers off and on the bike.
The package also includes 3lb weights for cross-training and an automatic 1-year iFit membership saving you $396!
Advantages of iFit membership include adding 4 other users and real-time recording and collection of your workout stats for progress monitoring.
The s22i does not use pedals that require dedicated clip-in shoes. It features toe cages that allow rides even when wearing sneakers.
Swapping out toe cages for clip-ins can cost you a maximum of $200 on both the pedals and special shoes.
When it comes to price, the s22i comes in a bit cheaper at $1999 and 1-year free iFit membership.
The Peloton, on the other hand, ranges from $2245 plus a $39/month membership fee.
Keep in mind that the Peloton does not also include free weights for cross-training.
The NordicTrack offers a much more substantial warranty than the Peloton.
- 10-year frame
- 2-year screen
- 2-year parts
- 1-year labor
- 5-year frame
- 1-year screen
- 1-year parts
- 1-year labor
According to reviewers, the NordicTrack brand has excellent customer care services, with repairs taking only a week mostly.
The Peloton brand, on the other hand, has received complaints of too long repair times.
Pros & Cons of the Peloton
Pros & Cons of the NordicTrack S22i
Our Recommendation, Therefore
Clearly, the Peloton and the s22i are not as similar as you might be inclined to think at first.
The Peloton is for those who want to join a virtual community of indoor cycling enthusiasts.
It has an energetic community of followers, and you can filter who to ride with by age, gender, and followers.
The s22i, on the other hand, is both a ride and manual controlled settings bike that provides something more than the Peloton.
It costs way much less and includes google maps to customize your rides and global trainer-led adventure rides, all on a one-on-one basis.
Also, you can opt for group classes if you like.
Have fun working out!