The Stamina 5325 Magnetic Resistance Upright Bike offers a range of additional features over the more conventional entry level bikes, including 6 preset workout programs.
In this review we look at the design features in more detail, as well as making some important comparisons between this bike and two others in the same price range – the Schwinn A10 and the Marcy ME708 Mag Cycle.
An exercise bike that’s within your budget
Whether you’re looking to start your first personal fitness program, or simply looking to supplement your existing routine with some extra cardio at home, an exercise bike is often the most space efficient and cost effective option.
But if you only need a basic entry level cycle and don’t have the budget for one of the top of the line models, it’s often difficult to decide which one to choose.
It really comes down to the features you need to make your workouts enjoyable, and what you need to encourage you to keep to your workout schedule.
If you are looking for a completely basic exercise bike with no added extras or even any preset workout programs, then the range of Marcy Upright Mag cycles is certainly worth a look.
However, many people tend to get bored with the lack of variety that having no preset training programs offers, in which case the Stamina 5325 Upright Bike could be the perfect alternative.
You actually get the same range of resistance settings (8 different levels) as the Marcy bikes, but with the addition of 6 preset fitness programs, tailored towards helping you achieve specific fitness goals.
In terms of the adjustment options, you can still raise the seat through a series of height settings, but the handlebars remain fixed.
This is a fairly standard feature of upright bikes, regardless of the price, with adjustable handlebars a feature we would usually only expect to find on spinning style bikes.
Apart from being able to set the seat to the correct distance from the pedals in relation to your height, how comfortable you are plays a major role in how much you enjoy the exercise.
Whereas some bikes only provide a solid plastic seat to sit on, the Stamina 5325 includes a padded seat that’s sculpted to provide you with the support you need, even during longer workouts.
One final design feature worth mentioning is a bit more subtle, but just as important.
The end caps for the rear base stabilizer actually act as levelling caps, which help to compensate for any slightly uneven ground that the bike may need to be placed on.
This improves the stability of the bike during your workouts, with transport wheels attached to the front stabilizer making it much easier to move between rooms if required.
Stamina 5325 – Features Summary
- Upright stationary bike for effective low-impact aerobic exercises in your home
- Smooth magnetic resistance with eight-step adjustable tension control to set workout intensity
- Six preset fitness programs with pace guide
- Pulse sensors built into handlebars
- Large, easy-to-read monitor displays all tracking information on one screen
- Built-in InTouch monitor tracks time, speed, distance, calories, and scans with simple, one-button control
- Comfortable, oversized wrapped vinyl seat, multiple seat positions adjusts to fit most users
- Oversized, weighted pedals
- Wheels for easy transport, levelling stabilizer caps
Display console design
Whereas most of the upright bikes around the $100 mark tend to provide you with a very basic display console, the Stamina 5325 is one of the lowest priced models to provide you with more advanced functions and feedback.
The larger LCD screen also makes is easier to read your workout time, speed, distance, calories burned, current workout program, and even heart rate.
Although the accuracy may not be as high as for some of the upright bikes from the likes of Schwinn and ProForm, the integrated heart rate hand sensors are another important upgrade over your standard entry-level bike.
Despite the competitive price, the display console also offers a basic form of performance tracking, which has been added as part of the preset workout programs.
The ‘Target Zone’ indicated in the left section of the screen is used to display the zone of current cycling speed.
This zone changes based on the program you choose, and tracks your current cycle speed to ensure you maintain the required level of intensity.
We took a more detailed look at the unique Target Zone feature when assessing the various preset workout programs.
Preset workout programs
Before we provide a quick guide to the different programs that are available, it’s important to mention that you don’t have to rely on these if you don’t want to.
If you would rather just jump on the bike and get cycling without following any preset profiles, you can simply choose the manual program.
This doesn’t provide any indication for your target zone, and allows you to adjust your cycling speed and resistance to suit your preferred pace and intensity level.
Back to the workout programs, and you have 6 to choose from, with each being designed to help you achieve a specific fitness goal.
6 Exercise programs:
1. Fat burn – A program with very little variation in speed, ‘Fat Burn’ is designed to keep you cycling at a consistent level that keeps your heart rate at close to 70% of your maximum. (7 to 11 mph)
2. Max. Fat burn – Featuring a very similar profile to ‘Fat Burn’, the only real difference is that the maximum cycling speed has slightly more of a peak towards the middle of your workout for higher intensity. (7.5 to 14 mph)
3. Aerobic – A program with a profile that resembles most ‘Hill’ style programs, this is considered more of an intermediate workout due to the wider cycling speed range and higher level of peak effort (8 to 20 mph).
4. Hill – Despite its name, this is actually a program that resembles more of a valley program, starting and ending at higher cycling speeds, with a period of lower speed in the middle. (7 to 12 mph)
5. Interval – A slight variation on the standard style of interval workouts, where your cycling speed alternates between high and low levels for the first half, followed by a much more manageable level of variation in the second half. (7 to 20 mph first half, 7 to 12 mph second half).
6. Mountain – Starting at the highest cycling speed of 26 mph, the ‘Mountain’ program is designed to increase lower body strength and muscle tone, as well as improving your overall cardiovascular health. This represents the most advanced workout program available with the Stamina 5325. (12 to 26 mph)
Ease of assembly
Despite having a simpler design than your average treadmill or elliptical, the assembly process can still be a useful thing to know before buying, particularly as reviewers have noted it can take anything from 20 minutes to 2 hours.
As with most upright bikes, the flywheel casing and belt drive system arrives already pre-assembled, but you do still have to attach the stabilizers, seat unit, pedals, and handlebar support.
There’s nothing particularly complicated about the remaining setup, as the assembly instructions in the user manual that accompanies the bike do tend to cover everything in sufficient detail.
The most time consuming part will likely be connecting the cable end of the tension knob into the spring hook at the end of the tension cable.
Although this can be a little difficult to get right, the instructions tell you all the correct settings to have in order to make this step a little easier. Customer service is also easily reachable Monday to Friday via a toll-free number if you run into any problems.
Although we always try to provide you with as much information as possible in our reviews, there will often be questions you have that we haven’t been able to answer.
In this instance, it’s usually best to find a site where you can post your question to a community of people who have already bought and are using the same equipment.
This is one of the reasons why we recommend Amazon as a source of customer reviews, and a place where you can get the answers to any questions you might have.
In terms of the reviews, the Stamina 5325 currently has well over 100 against its main product listing, which can be time consuming if you were to read through them all individually.
This is why we’ve created the lists of pros and cons below, which have been pulled straight from the collection of reviews on Amazon.
Rather than having to read through many reviews that provide the same feedback and information, we’ve collated these points into a single set of quick reference lists.
- Higher weight limit than most entry level upright bikes
- Handlebars are a comfortable distance from the seat
- Sturdy base frame helps improve stability when cycling
- Useful range of preset workout programs
- Target range helps to encourage you to stay within the required cycling speed
- Seat height settings can adjust to cater for a wide range of user heights (5 ft to 6 ft+)
- Built in heart rate monitor allows for basic pulse monitoring
- Competitively priced for the level of features included
- Quiet cycling motion due to the magnetic resistance system
- Doesn’t need to be positioned close to an electrical outlet – the console is battery powered
- Quick and easy to assemble
- Attaching the tension cable can be difficult when you’re first getting the bike setup
- Lack of pedal straps makes it easier for your feet to slip off at higher resistance levels
- Despite the larger display console, workout feedback is restricted to one piece of information at a time, meaning you can’t track speed and distance at the same time
- Computer timeout before resetting the workout information is quite short
- Lack of water bottle holder
- No storage shelf for displaying a book or tablet
- Handlebars aren’t adjustable
What’s covered by the warranty?
- Frame: 1 year
- Replacement parts: 90 days
Although it’s difficult to find many bikes that offer a longer warranty than this, if you are worried about the shorter coverage period, we can also recommend the Schwinn A10 model. This is a bike that’s almost identical in terms of the weight limit, number of exercise programs, resistance settings, and price.
One of the main differences is that it offers a 2 year warranty on the frame, instead of the 1 year that you get with the Stamina 5325. The Schwinn bike also comes with 6 months on the non-wear parts instead of 90 days, and 6 months electrical cover.