Bicycle trainers are exercise equipment that turn a regular bike into a stationary bike. They consist of rollers that prevent the bike from rolling forward and come in different widths and thicknesses for varying levels of difficulty. Some have collapsible frames for easy storage.
Bicycle trainers are a type of exercise equipment used to temporarily transform a regular bicycle into a stationary bike. The bicycle is placed on the rollers and raised slightly off the floor so that when the wheels of the bicycle spin, the rollers also spin and prevent the bicycle from rolling forward. The entire contraption can be ready for a workout in seconds by simply placing the bike on top of the rollers, making it an easy solution that eliminates the need for a traditional stationary bike. Sometimes, bicycle trainers have a collapsible frame for easy storage. This tends to take up much less space than a traditional stationary bike and may also be less expensive.
The most common design of bicycle trainers consists of three or four cylindrical rollers on a rectangular frame, positioned so that, typically, two rollers are under the rear wheel of the bicycle and one or two rollers support the front wheel. These rollers are usually connected by a belt so that the front wheel of the bicycle is also turned while pedalling. Most bicycle trainers consist of just this frame on the floor, with no attachments or connections to hold the bike in place above the trainers. The rider must pay attention and concentrate on balancing the bicycle to avoid falling off the rollers.
Bicycle rollers come in different widths, with narrower widths being more difficult to balance. Some riders prefer to focus on balance this way and enjoy the challenge and balance training that narrower rollers provide. Others may prefer wider rollers with more forgiveness for wobbling and light wheel spin. For people concerned about balance problems, sometimes the front wheel of the bicycle can be removed and the bicycle frame mounted on a stand to make the bicycle more stable, although this eliminates the easy switching from regular bicycle to stationary bicycle and vice versa that it is one of the eye-catching features of bicycle rollers.
The rollers are also often of different thicknesses. Thinner rollers force the rider to work harder, leading to a harder workout. Thicker rollers, by contrast, aren’t as durable and are typically easier to use. Additional resistance can be added with devices that slow down the rotation of the reels. Often, a beginner will start out using thick bicycle trainers and then add resistance once they get used to the trainers and need more of a challenge.