Welcome to your Sportstech SX400 review (available Amazon) – a mid-priced indoor bike aimed more at more experienced cyclists. In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about this bike as well as give our opinion on what it does best, and where it falls short.
Give me the quick version: is the SX400 any good?
This is a solidly-built indoor bike that’s a good choice for anyone into spinning or just looking to improve their cycling from home.
It’s well-designed, has all the features of a more expensive bike and the default console is genuinely pretty good. The hefty flywheel provides a good feel along with plenty of resistance.
Minor details like iffy calorie counting don’t detract from the experience and there’s really not much to dislike with this bike.
What is the Sportstech SX400?
The Sportstech SX400 is a robust exercise bicycle with an ergonomic design and enhanced comfort. The challenging 22kg flywheel offers unlimited resistance potential with anti-slip pedals for a secure workout. Also, the high-quality belt drive eliminates vibration and noise and reduces the hassle of maintenance of chain-style drive trains.
The bi-directional flywheel allows users to vary their workouts, with generous stride length (19.5cms). The SX400 provides enhanced comfort with padded armrests and wrist support covered in moisture and sweat-resistant material.
The SX400 offers a tablet holder with Kinomap compatibility so that users may use access training history. Kinomap provides top-tier coaching on-demand, and exciting google map-based rides anywhere in the world.
The SX400 has transport wheels and compact dimensions and is easy to store in apartments and houses with limited space. The SX400 comes equipped with a handy bottle holder and hand pulse sensors for optimal training. The ionic construction comes with a generous five-year manufacturer warranty.
Sportstech SX400 Features at a Glance
- Robust 22kg flywheel with adjustable step-free resistance
- Sweat protection covers
- 127 x 51 x 112 cm (L x W x H)
- Weight 44kgs
- Stride length 19.5cm (distance between pedals)
- Hand pulse sensor and cardio belt compatible
- Anti-slip adjustable pedals
- Padded armrests
- Adjustable handlebars and seat tilt
- Infinite manual resistance levels
- Pre-programmed workouts
- 5.5 LCD monitor tracks time, speed, distance, calories, pulse, pulse, RPM
- Integrated tablet holder and app integration
- Silent belt drive
- Transport rollers for easy moving
- Support weight of up to 150kg (330lbs)
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Who are Sportstech and are they a good brand?
While not as well known as your NordicTracks, Reeboks or Marcys of the fitness world, Berlin-based Sportstech is a big sports brand and seem to have really increased their gym gear over recent years and make a name for themselves.
They’re the brand behind a wide range of fitness machines, to suit different budgets. And their treadmills, bikes and rowers are good quality, and they seem to be more focused on more futuristic tech like online connectivity, built-in.
We’ve seen products from them such as rowing machines, exercise bikes and of course, treadmills. They tend to review well, have good customer service, and get around 4 – 5 star reviews, on average.
Sadly, there’s no showroom UK side, but if you’re ever in Berlin – feel free to drop in and check out their gear. They’re a good brand and we’ve yet to see an awful product from them.
Benefits to Training with the Sportech SX400
Excellent Cardio Workout
Cardio workouts exercise the heart and lower blood pressure and improve circulation. Improving your cardiovascular capacity enhances heart and lung function and reduces bad cholesterol, reducing the chance of heart disease. Improved cardiovascular functioning also boosts mood and improves sleep and overall well-being.
Muscle Gain and Definition
Indoor cycling offers an invigorating lower body workout but is not limited to the lower body. While firming and increasing glutes, quadriceps, and calves, the SX400 also engages your core while exercising. Standing up out of saddle cycling engages your biceps and triceps and targets lower back muscles for effective muscle engagement.
Burn Calories and Lose Weight
Harvard Health states that 185lbs users may burn up to 882 calories per hour in rigorous cycling, which is a great way to lose weight. With the compact yet sturdy design of the SX400, users can exercise at home without costly gym memberships and time-consuming commutes. The SX400 offers excellent benefits for those who wish to shed extra kilos from the comfort of their own home.Check Current Amazon UK Price
Who is the SX400 Aimed at?
The Sportstech SX400 is a compact home exercise that suits those seeking moderate to moderate-high training for improved health and weight loss. The 22kg flywheel offers a broad range of resistance that suits the novice and users who already have a good level of fitness.
The app interaction allows users to challenge themselves in interactive workouts and prevent boredom traditionally associated with solitary exercise. Kinomap offers on-demand coaching and multiple interactive activities to engage user’s interests and encourage regular workouts.
The silent SX400 is highly adjustable, adjustable with seat and handlebars that transition easily between multiple user households. The silent belt’s magnetic resistance allows users to work out anytime they wish without disturbing other residents in the living space.
The Sportstech SX400 does not suit users above 150kgs (330lbs) or those seeking enhanced high-intensity training on a professional cycling capacity.
What We Liked About the Sportstech SX400
Nice, Heavy flywheel
The SX400 has one of those minimal-looking stripped back flywheels which is basically just a big plate of steel. It looks flash but it’s got some serious heft to it as well; 22kg’s worth of it.
This is twice the weight you’d expect to find on budget bikes and a fair weight even at the £500+ price range.
While indoor cycles have different kinds of resistance – magnetic to braking pads, the weight of the flywheel has a huge impact on the feel of the ride and the kind of cyclist it’s suitable for. This bike is for anyone who’s familiar with riding and needs a ‘proper’ bike.
The default console is actually pretty good
After being horrified by some of the basic LCD screens on spin bikes over the years, I’ve come to appreciate a ‘good one’ when I see it.
With Sportstech’s bike, there’s an elongated display that although just a grey LCD shows multiple stats at a time, is easy to read and even has a cute little cycle guy on it that looks a bit like an old school game and watch.
There’s a pixel style window for Time, RPM, Pulse, Speed and Calories (more on that later…) But overall this is a decent display. Nothing flashy but above average for a spin bike, where the consoles are typically stripped back and minimal.
Decent app connectivity
Get your tablet on the shelf (or phone if you don’t mind the smaller screen) and you can connect to Kinomap’s service. This opens up a wealth of cool content and stuff you can try out while you’re cycling.
Check out user content like follow-along rides, or get some eye-candy from the likes of Google street view, where you can get to see where you’d be on some well-known cycling routes.
It’s worth a try even if you’re not specifically getting the SX400 for this, and it definitely helps to pass the time and stop you from getting bored.
A reasonably solid frame and build quality
So what’s this bike actually built like? The SX400 weighs a reasonably heavy 54 kg and has a thick frame that is sturdy whether you’re seated or standing on the pedals. The welds on the joints are relatively clean, as we’ve seen with other Sportstech gear too.
With an impressive 5-year manufacturer warranty, the SX400 is built to last, and the quiet and Comfortable heavy-duty crank supports vigorous training on and off the saddle. In action, the frame feels solid and supports the 22kg flywheel action on high resistance with little to no rattles and vibrations.
The SX400 is one of the quietest spin bikes
If you’re looking for a bike that doesn’t ruin your podcast when you get up to top gear, this one does a great job of keeping the decibels down.
The SX400 belt-driven system ensures smoother and less noisy cycling action, which may be problematic in multiple-person households (or if you’re watching your favourite Netflix show…)
Unlike chain-driven belts, the SX400 does not offer maintenance headaches which is a plus. The oversize base levellers and frame stabilizer bars provide added stability and make for noise-free cycling.
You can apply plenty of tension
Anyone who’s been to a spin class or two in their time should find themselves at home here. This bike is very similar to what you might be used to at the gym.
The weighty flywheel offers an impressive resistance and accommodates a wide range of user fitness levels.
Meanwhile, the traditional screw-down brake means you can apply as much or as little tension as you want.
The high resistance capacity means that users may constantly challenge themselves to move up in training intensity without levelling out.
Comfort and User-Friendly Design
We enjoyed the extra padded seats and armrests with their patent sweat protection. The material is soft and lends itself to forward position sprints and a comfortable low resistance cushioning.
The ergonomic handlebars and wrist rest are among the most comfortable rides in its class, with a good pedal clearance of 19.5cm for a natural feeling of cycling action.
We enjoyed the easy-adjust features of the SX400, and we swapped easily between our heights with the easy-adjust features. The seat and handlebar adjustments easily moved between my 5’2 and my colleague’s 6’1 frame in a few seconds, which would benefit users in multiple occupant households.
However, the structure seems better suited to taller users as my taller colleague was perfectly comfortable, while I felt I had to stretch a bit far to be entirely at ease.
Sportstech have brill customer support
The times when we’ve contacted Sportstech, they’ve been really quick to get back to us and have been incredibly polite and easy to deal with. This is something we’ve seen echoed in other user comments on Amazon. If there’s anything wrong when the bike arrives (from Germany) they’ll move quickly to fix or replace it.Check Current Amazon UK Price
What we Didn’t like About the SX400
Take the calorie count with a pinch of salt
As we’ve seen with home exercise bikes the calorie counter is less than accurate. The problem is that it calculates the energy expenditure based on the revolutions of the wheel rather than on your heart rate, or the way say the FitBit works.
As such, you’ll need to use a 3rd party fitness tracker or a chest strap to get a more accurate assessment. As it stands, the SX400 won’t register more calories if you add more resistance.
Some minor issues
For its price range, we were a bit disappointed in the quality of some of the add ons. The Bottle holder, for example, is super thin bare aluminium and will certainly not last. The LCD is small and pokey and could have been done with a facelift for the price.
Shipping can take a week
This bike ships from Germany so you will have to wait up to a week for delivery. Having said that, Sportstech is excellent and arranging delivery of their fitness equipment and keeping you up to date as to when it will arrive.
Our Verdict: Is the SX400 worth it?
Overall, the SX400 is a solidly built kit with impressive resistance and a comfortable design.
Stepping up in price from the budget exercise bikes definitely pays off with bikes like the SX400. It’s weighty, reliable and great for spinning or cycling in the winter months.
The display is good, it’s comfy and the app integration means there’s plenty to get stuck into if you want some motivation and entertainment on your rides.
A great all-round bike that’s suitable for more experienced cyclists as well as those looking for a good spin bike.
What else is out there in this price range?
Sportstech SX400 Full Specs
|Item dimensions L x W x H||120 x 62 x 139.5 centimetres|
|Minimum height||78 Centimetres|
|Item weight||22 Kilograms|
|Power source||Battery Powered|
|Meter||Heart Rate, Distance|
|Maximum weight capacity||150 Kilograms|
Is this a good bike for spinning?
The SX400 is a really good choice for spinning. The resistance knob and handlebar layout are exactly the same as what you’ll find in most spin classes. It’s also designed to be ridden standing on the pedals as well as sitting down.
Does it include a heart rate strap?
No, the SX400 doesn’t come with the pulse belt but it is compatible with one.
Which apps can you use with this bike?
This cycle works with Kinomap which is a good choice for cycling. You can read more about what Kinomap is and what it does here.
Is this a good bike for taller people?
This bike shouldn’t have any problem for you if you’re 6′ 3″ or even taller. It’s also got a high weight limit. This is a good choice for tall people!
References & Further Reading
- MayoClinic – Cycle Your Way To Better Health
- Find out more about what you can do with KinoMap here
- If this is your first exercise bike, take a look at the NHS’s cycling guidelines before you get started
- Read more about Sportstech here
- You can contact Sportstech on this page, 8am – 8pm, Monday to Friday
- Or visit the official website for info on Sportstech’s latest gym gear and ellipticals