For someone who is not into biking, a recumbent bike may look like a funny object that looks to be more like a piece of furniture from a garden. Of course, with its different style and the fact that everyone has always been used to seeing the conventional bicycle – recumbent bikes always become an object that turns heads, especially when its driven and running on the street.
From the way it is designed, a recumbent bicycle is a bike that places its rider in a different position from that of an upright bike. The position of the rider is reclined, distributing the rider's weight comfortably on his back and buttocks. This makes it unlike the conventional bike, where the rider's body weight has to rest on just a small area of the sit bones and hands alone. This ergonomic feature is one of the best advantages that it has over the upright and conventional bike.
Because the reclined position of the recumbent bike places a person's feet ahead of the body, the body of the rider has a smaller front, a profile that is popular in aerodynamic vehicles. Because of this profile, they perform better and run faster than ordinary bikes.
Variations of bikes
Aside from regular recumbent bikes, there are also variations which are all designed and built differently for different needs and terrain. Here are some popular variations of recumbent bikes to choose from:
Mountain Bike Recumbents – Can be used for rough terrain and unpaved roads, just like regular mountain bikes.
Lowracers – Usually has two 20 'wheels, or having a 20 "front wheel and a 26" rear wheel. This type of bike places riders at a very reclined position, as its seat is usually positioned in between the two wheels, instead of it being placed above them. This is one of the fastest kinds of bikes.
Highracers – Is easily distinguishable because of its two large wheels. It has the same seating position as of the lowracer, but has a higher seat, requiring the riders legs to be above the front wheel. Since its seating position is the same as of the lowracer, it follows the same aerodynamics, making it a fast bike also. Unlike the lowracer, however, highracer recumbent bikes are easier to maneuver.
Handycles – Are recumbent bikes that accommodate individuals who can not use their legs, or paraplegics. These bikes are recumbent bikes that are hand powered, with its brakes also mounted on its handle too.
Recumbent Tricycles – Have the same characteristics as the recumbent bike, but has three wheels instead of two.
While there are plenty of types and variations of recumbent bikes that one can choose from for his or her cycling pleasure, there are also stationary recumbent bikes that can be used in the gym or at home in order to use for exercise. Like upright stationary bikes, these recumbent bikes can be used for exercise, the only difference is that the rider sits on a more comfortable and reclined position. The reclined position also makes it easy for the rider to do other things, such as scan a magazine or watch television while exercising.
With its overall performance, comfort level and it's intriguing look and design, it is not a wonder recumbent bikes are doing great in the market nowdays, and are fast becoming the future of bicycles.