Last updated on September 12th, 2018 at 07:38 pm
The idea of having a decent quality spin bike at home is to be able to exercise in the comfort of your home which is something that is widely accepted by many fitness enthusiasts because it provides convenience and even cuts gym expenses and the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike is one possible decent spin bike that ought to be checked out.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 is the same as the IRONMAN H-Class 520 Indoor Cycling Bike but the latter has been discontinued because Paradigm Health & Wellness has a new partnership with Fitness Reality and had to rebrand. Also, other Paradigm Health & Wellness products that were sold under IRONMAN have been rebranded.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike has features that could make indoor workouts comfortable and fitness result oriented. For instance, it has the ideal ergonomically designed seat and handlebar that could be adjusted in 4 directions. This simply makes the bike to be suitable and comfortable for users of different heights, in other words, it is a bike with micro-adjustability.
Its overall build is sturdy, stable and supports up to 300 pounds/136 kg maximum user weight capacity. This is a testament that the frame is made from quality steel material.
It provides smooth, quiet and consistent resistance that is suitable for individuals of all fitness levels including advanced athletes.
That said, in this comprehensive review, we are going to unveil the pros and cons of the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike to enable you to make an informed decision regarding whether to purchase or not.
Click right here to have a peek at the discounted price of the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike on Amazon.
For a bike that supports up to 300 pounds/136 kg maximum user weight, the frame ought to have been made from quality steel; and rightly so, the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike’s frame is made from that. The overall body (frame and parts) of this unit constitute of over 95% metal.
For maximum stability, the base framework is equipped with front and rear stabilizer bars attached to the frame and held together by a steel bar across them. Underneath the stabilizer bars is adjustable rubber levelers designed to level up the spin bike on a floor that is not even.
Stability is guaranteed even during a vigorous and high-intensity workout; however, you might want to use a protective rubber mat especially if the bike is going to be on a hard surface such as a wooden or tiled floor.
The frame is coated with anti-corrosion and scratch paint that is designed to protect and preserve the original appearance for a very long time. The seat and the handlebar posts are duly chromed finished which is also anti-corrosive.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike is relatively a compact cycling bike because its overall assembled dimensions are 49 inches long by 24 inches wide by 53 inches tall. Differently put, individuals with space problem in their condo might be able to find a workout and storage space for it. Basically, it requires a workout space of 4 feet 1 inch long by 2 feet wide and a ceiling height of at least 6 to 7 feet so that there will be plenty room for a stand-up ride. Also, consider adding a 2 feet clearance on each side of the bike and the rear for safe and convenient workout experience.
While the storage space required is just the 4 feet 1 inch long by 2 feet wide. Best spot to store could be next to a wall or under the staircase.
It weighs about 136 pounds/61 kg when fully assembled. Do not worry about how to relocate or move the unit because it is portable. It is integrated with 2 solid transport wheels on the front base which literally make it completely mobile.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike also has a heavy, perimeter weighted flywheel that weighs about 44 pounds/20 kg with a belt driven mechanism which makes it one of the best spinning bikes to be considered purchasing due to the quality of workout experience it provides.
The Seat, the handlebar, and the Pedals
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike has a micro-adjustability design that makes it one of the bikes that could be customized to suit users of different height sizes. This also means that comfort and convenience will be felt during workouts because the seat, the handlebar and the pedals that are well designed often provide enjoyable workout experience.
Good designed and ergonomic seat is one that is contoured, padded with adjustability. Fortunately, the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 features a seat with these characteristics. The seat is fairly wide with layers of cushion to provide some level of comfort to the butt. At least, it is not as boring and uncomfortable as the regular road bike seats. Moreover, it has a standard connection mechanism which means it can be replaced with another saddle if there is the need. A gel seat cover could also be used to enhance the comfort it provides.
The seat is 4 way adjustable with several adjustments for different users. It can be adjusted vertically (upward/downward) and horizontally (aft/fore). Users between the heights of 5 feet to 6 feet 4 inches could be accommodated conveniently.
The handlebar also has similar adjustability as the seat. It is 4 way adjustable; this is something that is not on every indoor cycling bike because some have a handlebar that is only 2-way adjustable such as the one on the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1002.
The handlebar also features a multi-grip design that makes it possible for a user to exercise with different grips or posture. It is coated with soft rubber foam material that ensures comfort, firm and secure grip that prevents slippage and blisters in the palm.
The bike’s overall adjustability also makes it possible and easy for members of the family to work out with the same bike at different times.
The adjustments will only take a few seconds to complete and a user won’t find it difficult readjusting the handlebar and the seat when they have been altered by another user.
The pedals are another vital part of a spin bike because they determine the alignment of the legs and feet while working out and that is called in other words the Q Factor. The Q Factor is the distance from the inner edge of the left pedal to the inner edge of the right pedal.
Usually, the road bike’s Q Factor is narrow somewhere around 5 inches/127 mm and that is the reason why it feels natural while riding an outdoor bike without so much stress on the legs, knees and the ankles.
That said, the Fitness Reality X-Class 520’s Q Factor is 230 mm/9 inches, unfortunately, few inches wider than the ideal range. This means that some users that are used to riding a regular road bike might find it rather awkward while using this unit and there is the possibility of additional lateral stress on the knees as well.
The pedals are made of metallic alloy which means it is strong enough to support stand-up pedaling as long as you are within the stipulated maximum weight the bike supports. They are bi-directional pedals that allow you to pedal in reverse as well so that you can work on more muscle groups.
However, they are integrated with only toe cages and safety straps. They are not dual sided which usually provide SDP clips on the other side of the pedals for spin shoes. These only accommodate the standard gym/ sports shoes.
The toe cages ensure that you ride with full and secure thrust.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Indoor Cycling Bike features a belt drive system that is known for smooth and quiet operation. It is also low maintenance, unlike the chain drive system that requires periodic lubrication and possible adjustment in order to perform optimally.
The belt drive performs better because it provides smooth and quiet ride just as aforementioned. Although, the belt may shred and wear out over time as a result of usage and would require to be replaced. However, this may take years before a replacement will be needed and depending on how frequent the bike is being used.
Also, a bike with a belt drive system does not provide the feel of a road bike, but the one with a chain drive does.
That said, the belt drive lasts longer without any maintenance and the user could care less about disturbing the family or neighbors during workouts because it does not generate any noise.
Other elements that make up the drive mechanism are the 44 pounds/20 kg heavy duty, perimeter weighted flywheel, the solid 3-piece crankset, and the crank arms that are made of steel, together they provide formidable, steady and consistent motion that is characterized by quietness and smoothness.
These elements are also the reason why a user of about 300 pounds/136 kg in weight can perform the standing ride without any qualms.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike features a manual magnetic resistance system. This is indeed a plus over bikes with a friction resistance system because of the smooth and quiet resistance it provides. On top of that, the magnetic brake does not wear out and as a result, does not require any replacement.
The magnetic brake pad is connected to the tension knob that is situated on the main frame tube, while the magnetic brake pad is face down toward the wide edged flywheel. Resistance is simply generated by the proportion of the magnetic field on the flywheel.
The resistance becomes difficult when the magnetic brake pad gets closer to the flywheel and loses resistance when the magnetic pad is farther away from the flywheel. The tension knob is used to adjust the resistance by simply turning it clockwise to increase the resistance and anticlockwise to decrease it.
Basically, the magnetic brake pad does not make any direct contact with the flywheel in order to generate but the magnetic field creates the resistance.
There are no distinct resistance levels indicated on the tension knob just as the case with some indoor spin bikes. Therefore, you will not be able to know the highest resistance level used between workout sessions and this could impede your ability to track your strength and endurance improvement.
The resistance is not motorized, no power outlet is required; it is completely controlled manually.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike has an average console that is Bluetooth enabled. This also means that HR chest strap could be used to transmit your heart rate data to the monitor.
It is also possible to sync the monitor with any Android or iPhone device so that you can connect to the free online trainer app which offers a lot more value than the monitor. You should be able to track your workout progress through this medium and be able to target a specific HR interval. Also, you can set up goals for values such as time, distance, calories and more.
The LCD monitor basically displays time, speed, distance, calories, heart rate, and RPM. Since the LCD display has 5 panels the speed and the RPM displays rotationally on the same panel.
The monitor has high readability when used in a room or environment that is well illuminated otherwise it will be compromised because it is not backlit.
The console is powered by 4 AA batteries which are also included.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike is supplied with a water bottle and tablet holders which are both essential for workouts.
The water bottle holder allows you to keep water handy so that you can stay hydrated at all times during a workout while the tablet holder allows you to use any device that could entertain and inspire you during workouts.
However, the display/monitor will be blocked if you choose to place a tablet on the holder.
The storage space needed for the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike is about 4 feet 1 inch long by 2 feet wide since the overall assembled dimensions are 49 inches long by 24 inches wide by 53 inches tall.
It is a portable bike as well even though it weighs about 136 pounds/61 kg. It is integrated with transport wheels that allow you to easily relocate from one place to another.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike has fewer Amazon customer reviews at the time of this review. Nonetheless, it has good and positive approval ratings at least from those that received the bike in good condition.
- Solidly built and sturdy; supports up to 300 pounds/136 kg maximum user weight capacity
- Solid, heavy duty, perimeter weighted flywheel weighs 44 pounds/20 kg
- Grand base framework for stability
- Frictionless magnetic resistance system, no pad replacement is required
- Transport wheels for portability
- The console is Bluetooth enabled and can be synced with iPhone or Android device
- The console is telemetry enabled
- HR chest strap included
- Water bottle and tablet holders included
- The seat is 4-way adjustable
- The handlebar has multi-grip design and is 4-way adjustable
- Features a belt drive system that provides a quiet and smooth ride
- Low maintenance
- The pedals are made of steel with toe cages and safety straps
- Bidirectional pedals
- Good warranty
- Easy to assemble
- The Q Factor is wide and may cause stress in the knees
- The monitor is not backlit
- The resistance levels are not indicated on the tension knob
Product Dimensions and Specifications
- 49’’ Length
- 24’’ Width
- 53’’ Height
- Supports 300 pounds/136 kg maximum user weight
- Weight: 136 pounds/61 kg
- Seat: 4-way adjustable
- Handlebar- multi-grip design and 4-way adjustable
- Drive: Belt
- Resistance: Manual magnetic
- Pedals: Steel with toe cages and safety straps
- Accessory: Water bottle and tablet holders
- 10 Years on Frame
- 2 Years on Normal wearable Parts
- 5 Years on other Parts
Shipping, Assembly, and Maintenance
The shipping cost of the Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike depends on the retailer or vendor you are ordering from; however, there are some vendors such as Amazon that provide free shipping for U.S residents.
This unit is shipped without assembly however, if you are purchasing from Amazon you may opt for the ‘’expert assembly’’ and have the bike assembled for you by an expert for a cost, although, that won’t be necessary if you are willing to assemble it by yourself because it is not difficult to do.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 is delivered with the major components preassembled. There are only few parts that needed to be attached to the frame such as the seat and the handlebar posts, the rear and front bases stabilizer bars, the pedals, the seat, the handlebar, and the console.
A detailed instruction manual and the required tools are included to help you successfully assemble the X-Class 520.
It will basically take less than an hour for an averaged skilled person to put together.
As aforementioned, this unit does not require any serious maintenance since it features a maintenance-free drive and resistance system.
No lubrication or adjustment is required. No brake pad needs to be replaced over time because it features a magnetic brake pad that does not make any contact with the flywheel that could wear and tear.
Just make sure that the unit is always clean from dirt and sweat. Also examine regularly before use for any loose, worn, or broken part; fix accordingly if need be.
The Fitness Reality X-Class 520 Exercise Bike has a lot to be admired or impressed about. It is a strong and durable bike that supports 300 pounds/136 kg maximum user weight. It is not too bulky for people that have a space problem.
The console is Bluetooth and telemetry enabled and it is supplied with the HR chest strap.
It is true that this unit has its downsides but it is still a recommendable bike for anyone that wishes to experience decent and serious workouts at home.