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Top Fitness Apps for Indoor Cycling and How I Ranked Them

Echelon, Peloton, iFit Coach, oh my! The Top Fitness App’s for Indoor Cycling and How I Ranked Them

The Echelon, Peloton and iFit Coach apps are some of the best fitness apps on the market and all offer amazing workouts with a wide range of options for different users. These apps can be used on your phone or tablet so you can track your workouts on the go. The Nordic Track S22i and the Proform Studio bikes both have the iFit Coach built right into the console system. While all of these apps provided me with a great workout, there were features that I loved in particular for each one. Let’s take a look further.

Peloton

Peloton is one of the most elite brands of fitness on the market, so it came as no surprise that their app was my favorite of the three. The instructors teach in live studios so their energy and motivation is unique and experienced. This app allows you to try out their classes before committing to purchasing the Peloton bike. Some of the top features of this app include:

  • Wide variety of class options with over 10,000 to choose from
  • Offers cycling, yoga, running, bootcamp, outdoor workouts and strength training
  • Option to join a live class in NYC with real instructors and fellow riders
  • Experienced instructors with a variety of style
  • 14-day free trial option
  • Calendar layout to track classes and times easily

iFit Coach

This app packs a punch of features and endless amounts of classes to keep you motivated and trying new options. This app was my second favourite as I loved the variety it offered and the ability to use it anywhere. While I still found the Peloton instructors more motivating and unique, the iFit Coach was a very close second. Some of the best features of this app include:

  • Personalized coaching to meet individual needs
  • Wide range of classes including outdoor trail rides, bootcamp, cycling, etc.
  • Works with Google Maps and offers terrain-simulating experience as well as Google Street View
  • Ability to track nutrition, sleep, activity and exercise to help focus on more than just exercise
  • Connects to different add-on options such as heart rate monitors, sleep monitor, etc. to get even more personalized results
  • Low monthly cost to unlock more features

Echelon

The Echelon app offers many cool workout options with fun themes that would cater to a wide range of users. The app is easy to navigate and would be very ideal for users new to fitness. The layout and calendar make it easy to see your week ahead and plan for success. This app came in third for me because I found some of their instructors not as experienced and the camera angles/music could use some improvement but overall it was still a well-designed app. Some of the best features of this app include:

  • Multiple options of workouts for users of all levels; labels rides as beginner, intermediate or advanced on some of the classes
  • Theme rides such as Disney, 80’s, Disco and Hip Hop
  • Beginner-friendly; easy to navigate, not overwhelming in options
  • Ability to join a live class where the instructor actually says your name creating a more inclusive experience without physically being in the studio
  • Scenic rides that offer footage of beautiful places all over the world to ride in
  • Various cycling workouts that incorporate weights to include upper body toning

 

How to decide which one is best for you?

Peloton Pros

·         Motivating, fun and experienced instructors

·         Elite functions and professionally filmed workouts

·         Can join live classes that actually take place in NYC

·         Easy to use navigation and tracking workouts

iFit Pros

·         Huge variety of workout options

·         Instructors can actually change your resistance while riding to push you harder

·         Live classes and outdoor rides where you can learn about bike features such as RPMs, cadence, resistance, etc.

·         Tracks nutrition, sleep, activity and exercise

Echelon Pros

·         Many different class options to choose from with various themes

·         Great for beginners as it is easy to navigate and the rides are more standard

·         Can join a live class at different times throughout the day

·         Offers 14 day free trial

Peloton Cons

·         Peloton bikes are in a higher price point and only recently became available in Canada

·         Must pay to upgrade and access the app’s full features

iFit Cons

·         Cost to upgrade and unlock more features

·         Google Street View was choppy and the music could use improvement

Echelon Cons

·         Camera angles and music were outdated and could use an upgrade

·         Instructors are not as experienced as competitor apps

·         Only offers cycling/upper body workouts

 

 

My Experience

  • I found all of the apps were successful in providing you with various workout options and the ability to cater to different users
  • I enjoyed the outdoor ride on the iFit Coach app to simulate riding with a friend in a unique setting. During this ride, the athlete leading the ride provided useful information about cadence, resistance, rpm’s and overall bike function. This was really cool for road cyclists looking to simulate an outdoor ride from their own home.
  • The ability to join a live class for any of these apps is a great feature for those who can’t make it to a gym or would prefer to ride in the comfort of their home. However, I did find the Peloton cycling classes had more experienced and motivating instructors than the competitor apps. The instructors teach in NYC so the classes felt closer to being in the studio with the other riders than just watching a pre-recorded video.
  • The Echelon was one of the easiest apps to use and I would definitely recommend this one for newer riders. The variety of classes is great but the camera angles and music could use an upgrade, which would help improve the quality of the rides. I found the music outdated and didn’t keep me motivated at times.
  • All of the apps offer different price options to upgrade and unlock different features. The Echelon does offer slightly more options that would cater to your specific needs, essentially only having to buy what you would benefit from.
  • In terms of comparing the video classes to a real spin studio experience I think Peloton does this the best of the three likely because they have an actual studio in NYC and their instructors are not just on the app but actually teaching in reality.
  • The iFit Coach is ideal for users looking to do more than just workout. The app offers the function to monitor sleep, track health and calories, activity, etc. so this would be great for users looking to incorporate more options for tracking their overall health rather than just using the app for fitness.
  • All of the apps will definitely give you a great workout and keep you busy with the amount of different class types so it would be useful to self-assess what you are looking for in the app: just workouts? Tracking personal health and progress? Experienced trainers to motivate you? These are just a few questions to ask yourself that will help you decide which app is right for you.

In Conclusion…

I enjoyed trying out the Peloton, iFit Coach and Echelon apps and being able to compare the different features and functions. I would definitely recommend any of these apps to users looking to improve their physical fitness and have creative options while doing so. I have highlighted the features that stood out to me when using all three and compared these apps from my perspective. While I loved certain qualities about all of the apps, my favourite was the Peloton because of the instructors and elite aesthetics of the classes. My second favourite was the iFit Coach because of the amount of different rides, workouts and options it provided. I loved the outdoor rides and the added features such as workouts that include off the bike movements as well. The Echelon came in third for me only because I felt the music and footage could have been done in higher quality. I still enjoyed the different and unique themes on this app and its easy navigation. Overall, I think most users will love any of these apps and can easily find the one that is right for you by evaluating what it is you want to achieve and which app is going to provide you the specific tools to do so!