When I was taking physical therapy sessions to rehab an injured shoulder, the PT had me warm up with an arm bike. I don't have mobility issues--my only issue then was my right shoulder/arm and had kept up on aerobic exercise and lower body work even while injured. I personally did not feel I got as good of an aerobic workout on the hand bike. I am not sure it uses large enough muscle groups (though I did use my upper back so maybe). The PT would ask me questions about my progress/week while I was hand biking and I could easily carry on a conversation and wasn't even breathy. I never wore my heart rate monitor, but I feel I only got a mild aerobic workout and I peddled as fast as I could. Of course, I did have an upper body injury which may have hindered my ability to make use of this machine fully.
I think it is great for injury or people with mobility issues or just to mix things up.
Firstly, burning fat is an all-body process, and you can't target where you lose weight. Energy is delivered to the muscles via the bloodstream, NOT from being absorbed from surrounding fat stores. An arm bike won't do anything about arm fat.
The legs (and the thighs in particular) are the largest and most powerful in the body, and exercise involving the legs will tend to burn more calories. With the arm muscles being smaller, an arm bike won't burn as many calories or get your heart rate as high.
However, for those with mobility issues, arm bikes can be an excellent way to get in cardio.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
current weight: 178.0
Fitness Minutes: (218,805)
4/6/14 3:23 P
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