Best Budget Bike Trainer

Even for the most passionate cyclers, crappy weather is a turnoff. A perfectly good excuse to stay in bed all day. But, what if you can still do your normal morning rides regardless of the weather out there? or any other reason for that matter with a budget bike trainer?

Why Should you Buy a Bike Trainer?

A bike trainer allows you to still ride your bike indoors without having to cough extra bucks for an exercise bike or a stationary bike. They work pretty much just like stationary bikes only that you attach your bike to the trainer and pedal your bike just as you normally would.

The best budget bike trainer comes with a variety of amazing features, drive types as well as resistance levels. With the latest bike trainers you can sync your bike trainer with Bluetooth and connect to mobile and TV apps to keep you entertained as you ride. You can even do virtual rides. 

On top of that, these bike trainers are ideal for beginners that are looking to become more familiar with their new mountain bike or hybrid bike. As you practice more on the bike trainer, you’ll become more familiar with your bike and will start riding better

Buying the best budget bike trainer isn’t the hardest thing on the planet of course but it can be challenging if you are a first-time buyer.

Don’t fret though, we will take you through some of the best budget bike trainers the market currently has as we give you our thoughts on how each fairs. We will also include what we like about each trainer and take you through how to buy one. 

Let’s start with a review of the best budget bike trainers before we head over to choosing one.


Review of the Best Budget Bike Trainers

Alpcour Bike Trainer Stand

8.5/10 Our Score
  • Brand: Alpcour
  • Frame Material: Stainless Steel
  • Wheel Size: 26″-28″ and 700C
  • Bike Type: Road Bike
  • Resistance Mechanism: Fluid
  • Load Capacity: 300lbs

If you are looking for a high-performance indoor bike trainer stand then this offering by Alpcour is among the best budget trainer bikes. It comes highly recommended by cyclers already using it that it caught our attention.

The first thing we noticed is how easy it is to set it up and operate. Even better is that It comes with remote control for precise adjustments of resistance levels. And if you are a frequent traveler who loves to stay in shape even when away, you can easily fold it and fit it into the trunk of your car. It’s very lightweight so it won’t add any significant weight to your load.

Unlike most trainer stands that are quite noisy, this stand comes with a built-in super noise reduction feature that minimizes the whir.  And with the reduced friction you can be sure of using your stand for quite a long time.

Both light and heavy weights can comfortably use this trainer. It is very stable thanks to the wide-set design.  

Another amazing thing is that It’s built on a fluid technology that gives you a real outdoor riding experience in the comfort of your home only that the ride is smoother and shake-free.

Which is a good thing anyway as you get to fully focus on breaking a sweat. Also, you can use any bike type on it, a mountain or road bike. 

Is it safe to use? Very much indeed, it features anti-slip rubber pads to prevent slippage, a dual tension knob, and a high-quality lock ring. All these features ensure that your riding experience is safe and secure.

What We Like

  • It is made of high-quality steel
  • Comes with a good storage bag that’s easy to carry
  • Easy to set up, operate, and requires no adjustments
  • Features a long handlebar chord

What We Don’t Like

  • Installation instructions are challenging to follow
  • A little noisy

This bike trainer stand is the best is one of the best if you’re on the lookout for a high-quality reasonably priced stand. It will not only serve the intended purpose but also become your long-term training companion.


BalanceFrom Bike Trainer

8.0/10 Our Score
  • Brand: BalanceFrom
  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Wheel Size: 26″-28″ and 700C
  • Bike Type: Road Bike and Mountain Bike
  • Resistance Mechanism: Magnetic
  • Load Capacity: 330lbs

If you are particular about getting an easy to install bike trainer stand, look no more, the BalanceFrom Bike Trainer Stand is your solution. It’s easy to install as well as release.

Fast release in a trainer stand is essential in securing the bicycle’s rear wheel. This simplicity makes it super ideal for beginners and cyclers who don’t like to dwell so much on technicalities. 

You can use this trainer stand on different surfaces and it will still be stable. It is designed with a broad base and a low stance that delivers steadfast balance. 

What is more, is that BalanceFrom Bike Trainer offers eight levels of magnetic resistance and a resistance controller allowing you to set your desired resistance and speed. 

As far as compatibility,  this trainer stand comes with a wide fit to accommodate almost any given bicycle, be it road or mountain bike. 

What We Like:

  • Eight levels of resistance settings
  • Compatible with most bike types
  • Super easy to install and release
  • Works on any surface

What We Don’t Like:

  • Weight makes it difficult to transport

BalanceFrom Bike Trainer Stand is perfect for beginners, it has a higher number of resistance levels that you can slowly transition to. It is also super easy to install and use.


Health Line Fluid Bike Trainer Stand

7.5/10 Our Score
  • Brand: Health Line
  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Wheel Size: 26″-28″ and 700C
  • Bike Type: Mountain Bike
  • Resistance Mechanism: Fluid
  • Load Capacity: 300lbs

HEALTH LINE bike trainer is perfect for highly skilled riders but also ideal for beginners. It comes with 8 resistance levels that you get to adjust to suit your riding skill. The first two levels are great for beginners and can be used for warm-ups and bike training.

The highest resistance level simulates steep hill climb which is great for someone who wants it hard and tough.

One of the biggest advantages of this trainer compared to the rest is the super-wide base structure which guarantees you of great stability. And to top it up the frame is made of pure steel which is super strong and durable.

Even though it is wider than most trainers as mentioned already, you can still fold it down to a compact size to easily carry around and store.

It’s also compatible with most bikes especially those with a quick release. If you have a mountain or road bike you can still use it on this trainer so long as the wheels are between 26 to 28 inches or 700c.

This bike stand can support a max weight of 300lbs. The adjustable footpad is made of rubber to prevent any unwanted shaking when riding. This is important in ensuring that you get a smooth ride. 

Even though it has noise reduction features, you can still hear some slight noise made. Don’t worry though if you live in an apartment, your next-door neighbor wont hear it.

The noise is similar to a conversation being made in a room, loud but not loud enough to distract your next-door neighbor. If however you are particular about getting a totally silent bike stand, then this may not be for you.

What We Like:

  • 8 Resistance Levels
  • Super Easy to Install
  • Durable and Stable
  • Features Sweat Guard
  • Compatible With Most Types

What We Don’t Like

  • Knob Can Potentially Jam
  • Noisier Than Expected

A wide range of resistance levels can make a real difference in your workout and that is what the HEALTH LINE bike stand gives you. All these levels can be used by both beginners and pros so if you are a beginner you can be sure to use it all the way to your novice years.  


Yaheetech Magnetic Bike Trainer

7.5/10 Our Score
  • Brand: Yaheetech
  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Wheel Size: Up to 28-inch
  • Bike Type: Road Bike and Mountain Bike
  • Resistance Mechanism: Magnetic
  • Load Capacity: 265lbs

Yaheetech has a variety of bike trainers and this specific one is an entry-level stand. It’s easily one of the best budget bike trainers on the market. It comes with 6-speed resistance levels that can be adjusted by twisting the knob at the handlebar. You can adjust to whatever difficulty level you want and no matter the speed, you still get to be in control and be very stable.

It works very smoothly and is very silent, no distracting others while working out or even yourself. Pedaling noise can be very irritating when trying to focus on your fitness goal of the day.

You can count on the trainer to last you for quite a while as it is made of high-quality materials. Also, you don’t have to worry about the wheel of your bike getting damaged as it is safely protected by the resistance wheel of the stand. This helps to extend the life of your bike. 

Your floor is also safe from any damage as it is protected by the non-slip feet caps that help secure the stand firmly preventing it from moving. The constant moving and displacing is what damages floors.

What We Like:

  • Portable and Easy Storage
  • Heavy-Duty Stainless Steel Guarantees Durability
  • Super Stable
  • Operation is Silent and Smooth

What We Don’t Like:

  • Produces Annoying Sound Sometimes
  • Only Supports Tires Up To 28 inces

If you’re looking for a bike trainer stand that’s convenient, long-lasting, and of course, durable then Yaheetech  bike trainer stand should definitely be your first choice


Sportneer Bike Trainer Stand Steel

TOP PICK
9.5/10 Our Score
  • Brand: Sportneer
  • Frame Material: Alloy Steel
  • Wheel Size: 26″-28″ and 700C
  • Bike Type: Road Bike and Mountain Bike
  • Resistance Mechanism: Magnetic
  • Load Capacity: 300lbs

If you’re looking for the best budget bike trainer, then the Sportneer bike trainer is a great option. For any bike trainer to be effective, it needs to be stable. Sportneer ensure stability by including five adjustable anti-slip rubber feet.

If you’re worrying about the level of noise a bike trainer makes, then you won’t need to worry about anything with the Sportneer bike trainer. It just tends to get a little louder when you use a mountain bike.

When it comes to training, there are six resistance levels that you can choose between. It’s accessible thanks to the bar-mounted remote and you can change the intensity as you’re training.

Even at the most difficult settings, the bike trainer doesn’t make a lot of noise. Also the spread of the resistance range is optimal, jumping from one difficulty to another feels natural.

The Sportneer bike trainer is also accessible and very easy to set up. Once you’re done training, you can use the quick release clamp to release and remove your ride.

It’s a highly compatible bike trainer as well. You can fit any road or mountain bike that feature 26-28″ or 700C wheels.

What We Like

  • Pick Between Six Resistance Levels
  • Comes With Easy to Carry Storage Bag
  • Compatible With Mountain or Road Bike

What We Don’t Like

  • Becomes Loud With Mountain Bike

Sportneer ticks all the boxes that you’d require out of the best budget indoor bike trainer. The only thing that let’s the Sportneer down is the noise it makes while running a mountain bike. Aside from that slight hitch, the Sportneer is a worthy top pick!


Buying guide- Factors to consider when buying a bike trainer

No doubt outdoor riding is way more beneficial and enjoyable. But indoor riding isn’t so bad an option either especially when the weather out there is “moody”. Even though you get to miss the sun and the natural breeze, a bike trainer is a necessity to any cycling enthusiasts.

Let’s go over what you need to consider when buying one of the best budget bike trainer.

  • Budget Price

No matter how appealing a bike trainer may seem to be, you need to purchase something that is priced within your budget. It is advisable that you window shop so as to compare the prices of different sellers.

This will not only enable you to settle on a product that is within your set budget but also one that suits your preferences.

  • Portability

Depending on how often and where you are planning to be using your bike trainer, the weight of it would matter. For example, are you going to move your bike trainer?

Carry it to races and events to use it for warming up? Some bike trainers are light enough to be folded up and carried around. They are also compact so no bulkiness.

  • Durability

Go for a bike trainer that is strong and made of reliable materials that can last for a longer period. A stronger trainer enables you to do intense workouts.

Look for products whose manufacturer offers a warranty. This builds customer confidence as far as the reliability and durability of the product is concerned. As can be said with some bike trainers, sometimes spending a little more on quality equals spending less in the long run.

  • Potential Resistance

This is the amount of power output the bike trainer is able to give out before it maxes out. If you are a beginner to biking, consider going for the entry-level bike trainer.

An advanced bike trainer with a power meter is a good investment if you are more athletic doing serious races and intense workouts. For beginners though, a standard budget bike trainer will be more than enough

  • Noise Factor

Bike trainers that are less noisy are priced higher in the market than those that have higher decibel readings, which are less expensive in comparison.

If your workout sessions are in an apartment with neighbors that might not entertain noise, then you may need to consider buying fluid trainers which are relatively less noisy albeit expensive.

Using smooth tires decreases noise. There are more trainer options available if you have a secluded training space and do not mind a bit of noise as you work out

  • Stability and Leveling

If your workout sessions are on a surface that is uneven, you may need to consider going for a budget bike trainer that comes with leveling screws to enable you adjust for stability.   

You would not want to find yourself exercising on a trainer that is shaky and prone to cause you injury. Trainers with large footprints provide more stability for you as you enjoy your workout session.

Types of Bike Trainers

  • Magnetic Trainers

This type of budget bike trainer uses magnetic resistance to create drag against the bike wheel. The magnetic flywheel creates fixed resistance which means your pedaling does not get harder even as your tempo increases.

For you to change the amount of resistance that you are riding against, you must get off the bike and select the new level on the trainer or change it through a handlebar-mounted cable that is attached to the trainer.

  • Rollers

Rollers use three drums, two under your rear wheel and one under your front wheel on which the wheels rest on and rotate while you ride.

While the wheels rotate, the centrifugal force created keeps you balanced. This type of trainer requires you to practice and focus in order to stay upright. 

  • Fluid Trainers

This is one of the most popular trainers today. It has a flywheel with an inner chamber of fluid which further tunes the resistance options. The bike’s rear-wheel drives the mechanism.

When you pedal faster, the temperature of the fluid inside the flywheel increases. The fluid becomes thicker, raising the resistance and making pedaling more challenging. This offers you an intense workout and a more realistic road feel.

  • Wind Trainers

These trainers are the cheapest and most basic of the budget bike trainer options. This is because they rely on wind to create resistance. They use a fan designed to catch the wind as it turns to create resistance. The faster you pedal, the harder the resistance.

Because of the fan cutting through the air, you will find that these trainers are loud. They are simple to set up and the least expensive option in the market.

Benefits of Using a Budget Bike Trainer

  • There are Minimal Distractions

When riding outside, you tend to be interrupted by so many things such as stopping to allow for a person to cross the road, or stopping for a quick chat with a friend that you have bumped into. All these distractions reduce the time that actual cycling is done during the whole of your training session.

An indoor bike trainer removes these interruptions and uncontrollable variables so that you are able to solely focus on cycling and completing your workout with minimal or no interruptions at all.

  • Allows Focus on Technique

Some bike trainers include a feature that gives you readings on your stroke efficiency, helping you make improvements to your cycling. With the help of a trainer, you are able to identify your dead zones-where you loose efficiency and are not producing any power.

With this feedback, you can plan for drills that will help you work on techniques such as pedal stroke, one-legged drills to build your strength and improve your overall cycling performance.

  • Much Safer

As a cyclist, you are very vulnerable on the roads due to all the rush drivers, and low visibility at night. You do not need to have concerns such as carrying a spare tire or repair kit.

Outdoor cycling exposes you to rough terrain that may make riding difficult and dangerous. Sharp corners and stones on the roads are a major cause of injuries to cyclists. With a bike trainer, it is way safer with minimal chances of you falling.

  • No Bad Weather

With an indoor bike trainer, you do not have to deal with the worst of weather elements such as rain, wind, snow, or ice. Riding outside in poor weather is just unpleasant.

You tend to cover low distances outside during bad weather. This is because it takes more effort to push yourself through rain, low temperatures, and strong winds. With a bike trainer whether it rains or not, you do not need to reschedule your training session.

  • Always Accessible

Bike trainers allow for flexibility in terms of time. You can always find time for a workout session even with your busy daily schedule.

A night cycling session on your bike trainer after a busy day at the office can be refreshing. There is no limitation of time when it comes to bike trainers.

  • Versatility

A bike trainer has customization options as per the terrain and workout sessions. It gives you the choice to select a specific mode depending on what you want to train your body as well as the length of the training.

Stationary Bikes Vs Bike Trainers 

Not sure whether to go for a bike stand or a stationary bike? Here are a few differences between the two.

  • Setup Time

It will take you less time to set up stationary bikes than a bike trainer. This is because they come as a complete assembled structure. Minimal maintenance is equally required for them.

A bike trainer will require you to change your bike more so often. The regular installing and disassembling of the bike takes a significant amount of setup time.

  • Adjustability

Stationary bikes fit users of different heights since they come in a one-size-fits-all option that you can adjust accordingly. However, you may need to change a different bike on your trainer every time you need to switch a rider in order to enable them to cycle comfortably and effectively.

  • Posture

Stationary bikes give you more posture options. They come in the traditional bike postures of upright positions or even reclined positions.

Bike trainers prepare you for road-racing by giving you a body-forward, over-the-handlebars posture.

  • Portability and Ease of Storage

Stationary bikes are heavy and occupy a larger workspace. They are made of strong metals making them harder to transport. Their large metals make storage difficult.

Due to their heavyweight, they offer good stability during intense workouts.

You can separate your bike from your trainer, making it easier for you to carry and take them on the road or store them in your house. 

Conclusion

Bike trainers are a lifesaver, every cycling nerd should own one for those crappy weather days or when you are just don’t feel like stepping out of your house. 

They are versatile in features and with the many resistance levels they come with, you can work out, warm-up, or train for a race all in the comfort of your home.

We loved that you can still use your regular bike on them, which makes it very affordable. 

As long as you know what features to look out for, which we have talked about exhaustively in this post, buying one should be a breeze.

From our review section, you should be able to get the best budget bike trainer for you in a matter of minutes!

James Dawson

After learning how to ride a bicycle much later than all the other kids, James Dawson hasn't looked back. The author now actively rides a bicycle as a part of the community cycling group and competes regularly in local competitions. Aside from that, he loves technology and always keeps up to date with the latest cycling tech.