For a safe, convenient, comfortable, ergonomic and low-impact way to easily fit exercise into your daily life, the Marcy ME 709 recumbent exercise bike is hard to beat. This review will make that clear.
That’s especially true if you’re advanced in age, overweight, frail, disabled, have had back or neck surgeries or are recovering from knee or hip surgery.
And that’s especially true if are on a budget or if you simply don’t want to pay extra for needless bells and whistles.
Marcy ME 709: Comfort and Easy Access
This recumbent exercise indoor bicycle is designed to accommodate users who are not athletes.
Therefore, the seat is relatively large. It’s shaped like a triangle on top of a square. The base is 16 inches wide. And it’s 12 long from base to top. That’s big enough to hold large rears.
The armrest bars are 22 inches apart. If your rear is wider than that, you can leave them off.
The manufacturer says the weight limit this stationary exercise bike will hold is 300 pounds. However, according to my user research, many people who weigh up to 400 lbs and even over find it comfortable as well.
2-inch high-density foam padding covers the seat. And the seat sits 18 and a half inches off the ground. This is comparable to most chairs and sofas. The contoured handle bars, which are also covered in foam padding, provide support if you need some while getting on and off the bike.
It’s designed with “Step Through” technology. That means that there’s nothing in the middle keeping you from sitting in the seat. Just the 2-inch steel tube on the floor which joins the front half to the back half.
The back of the seat is 11 and a half inches wide at the bottom. It narrows to 9 inches wide at the top. It’s 16 inches tall. There is no head rest. The back does provide good ergonomic support. Many users want a recumbent exercice bike because they are elderly, overweight, disabled or have back and neck surgeries.
For more on whether you should buy an upright or recumbent stationary exercise bicycle, read this post.
This bike uses magnetic resistance delivered by eddy current. Plates of magnets surround the flywheel. The closer you set them to the flywheel, the more strength must exert to turn the pedals.
Because we don’t hear magnetic fields, that keeps the noise down to the mere whisper of the pedals going around. Indoor bicycles using magnetic resistance are the quietest available.
Also, because there is no direct contact to wear down machinery, magnetic resistance requires little maintenance.
Because the Marcy ME 709 is so comfortable and quiet, you can use it while watching television, listening to music, reading, talking on the phone, knitting, checking your email or playing video games.
You may want to stand up and stretch every 30 minutes or so, just as you would sitting in a chair. It’s easy to integrate riding this indoor bicycle into your usual daily activities.
At the same time you’re watching a good movie or looking at pictures of your grandchildren on Facebook, you’re burning calories, strengthening your leg muscles, recovering from knee surgery and improving your heart health.
Your Height Can Be Short or Tall
The manufacturer says this Marcy recumbent bike is designed for people from 5 to 6 feet tall.
You can adjust the length of the steel tubing so the seat is either closer or farther away from the pedals. It comes with 6 preset lengths.
At the closest setting, the seat is 22 inches from the pedals. This should work for people 5 feet tall unless your legs are very short. However, some people who are 4 feet 10 or 4 feet 11 find this fits them. Some of them put a pillow behind their backs.
And users up to 6 feet 6 inches tall find the Marcy ME 709 comfortable to use at its longest setting.
Also, you can drill a new hole into the tubing to bring the seat either closer to or farther from the pedals.
The Marcy ME 709 Recumbent Exercise Bike has Safe Pedals
The pedals are counterbalanced. This safety feature keeps them from rotating around if your foot slips off.
In addition, this model comes with adjustable straps to keep your feet from slipping or sliding off the pedals.
Because of the straps, you can pedal backward as well as forward, but there is no resistance.
Comes With 8 Pre-Set Resistance Levels
There’s a knob you can easily turn to make the pedals turn with less or more resistance.
At the lowest setting, you’ll feel almost no resistance, as though you’re walking.
At the highest setting, you’re really forcing your leg muscles to work hard.
In general, choose the setting that gives you the most resistance you can work with for as long as you wish to exercise.
As I mentioned, many people enjoy sitting and pedaling for an hour or longer while they enjoy other activities.
You may want a more intense workout.
Depending on your current fitness level, start out at a setting you can feel but which doesn’t strain your muscles. Begin slowly. You can always ramp up the resistance and your speed as you condition and strengthen your legs, heart and lungs.
If you have a physical therapist, follow their advice.
The Computer Screen on the Marcy ME 709
There’s a computer screen which displays four pieces of information:
Total Calories Burned (calculated based on the speed)
These displays rotate from one to the other at 4-second intervals.
If you want to see only one, such as the Time Elapsed or the Current Speed, you can freeze the display to show only that figure.
The display screen requires two AA batteries (not included).
Weight and Household Convenience
This stationary indoor bike weighs 66 pounds. It comes with integrated transport wheels so it’s easy to roll into a storage area or out of the way when not in use.
It works well and remains stable on any flat surface. That includes hard wood, laminate and carpeting. However, consider protecting bare floor with a rubber mat or a rug.
It does not fold up.
Fitness and Weight Loss, a Review of the Basics
With 8 preset levels of resistance, this bike can challenge all but the strongest and most accomplished cyclists.
The level of workout you get depends on how hard you work the bike.
You can pedal at a comfortable speed over long periods of time for aerobic, cardiovascular endurance conditioning.
If you wish, you can use it for High Intensity Interval Training. In that case, you sprint hard for a short period, rest, then repeat.
You can perform an exhausting workout or simply burn many extra calories throughout your evening while reading.
If you use it consistently, you’ll obtain better results. With enough exercise, you’ll speed up your metabolism so you burn more calories around the clock.
Consult your doctor or physical therapist for how you can get the best results from your exercise bike.
Other Important Information
The manufacturer’s warranty is for two years.
Also, it requires assembly out of the package. It does come with assembly instructions and wrenches to tighten the bolts.
Do You Really Need Fancy Extras? This Recumbent Exercise Bike Doesn’t Have Them
The Marcy ME Magnetic Resistance Recumbent bike does NOT include:
* A beverage holder
* A USB charger
* Video screens displaying landscape so you can pretend you’re really outside instead of inside
* Preprogrammed workouts
* Bluetooth connectivity to mobile apps
* Connectivity for Apple devices
* Cooling fans
* A heartrate monitor
If what you want from an indoor exercise bike is a comfortable way to burn calories, strengthen your leg muscles and improve your cardiovascular conditioning while having your usual fun, this is it.
When assembled, this recumbent bike is 55.5 inches long (though you can adjust that to allow for your height), 25 inches wide and 37.5 inches high.
The 2-inch, 14-gauge steel tubing has a two-tone black, painted finish. The black frame has a powder-coat finish. The seat and back are black. The outer housing for the flywheel and magnets is copper and gray.
It’s quiet and stable so you can peddle while performing many other activities. Therefore, it encourages you to remain active through your usual sedentary entertainment.
The display screen is set low enough that it does not block your view of your television screen.
It’s sturdy and comfortable.
It’s ideal for people who need a safe, ergonomic design accommodating large body sizes, the elderly and disabled people with limited mobility and agility.
Although the seat position can be adjusted so it’s closer or farther away from the pedals, and there’s a quick-release knob to accomplish that with the spring-loaded pin, it requires the two halves of the bike be physically moved closer or farther apart. Therefore, it does take some effort.
It’s not really convenient.
Because of that, if you’re going to share this with somebody who is taller or shorter than you, you may have to work together to change the settings as required. However, it gets easier with time.
If you will be the only rider, this is not an issue because you will just keep it at the setting that best suits your size.
If two people in the same house are going to use this bike, and they require different settings to be comfortable, the most logical solution, especially at this model’s low price, is to buy two. That way, you both can cycle whenever you want without waiting for the other person to finish. You don’t have to constantly change the seat position and settings. And you can both cycle at the same time.
If you want to adjust the resistance setting, you must first bring the pedals to a full stop. Therefore, it’s not well-suited to complicated workouts that require adjusting the resistance levels on the fly while continuing to pedal nonstop.
It does not include a heart rate monitor. Therefore, if you’re targeting a certain range of heart exertion, a zone, you’ll need to wear a separate heart rate monitor.
Marcy ME 709 Recumbent Exercise Bike Consumer Ratings
This bicycle gets high ratings and favorable reviews for its sturdy construction and ease of use by customers and services.
It normally costs under $200. As mentioned, at that price, you don’t get many extras. However, for giving you a safe, quiet, sturdy and comfortable indoor stationary bicycle to pedal, it’s one of the best.
Who the Marcy ME 709 Magnetic Resistance Bike is Best for:
* Recovering from knee surgery
* Everybody who wants to easily fit more exercise into their daily lives and routines to lose weight and improve their fitness levels without aspiring to winning races.
Who This Recumbent Exercise Bike is Not Best for:
* Ambitious and experienced cyclists who need a bike with preprogrammed workouts and connectivity to use mobile devices and apps to automatically track their performance
* Anyone who is targeting a particular heart rate zone (but they can use the Marcy ME 709 while wearing their own heart rate monitor or fitness tracker)
* Anyone who insists on having a USB charger, beverage container or screens displaying outdoor scenes
For its price range, as this review shows, the Marcy ME 709 recumbent exercise bike with magnetic resistance is terrific for everyone who just wants quiet, sturdy comfort to lose weight, strengthen their knees and improve their heart health.
Therefore, go now to Amazon to check it out.