September 24, 2021

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SoulCycle At-Home Bike Review – Is the SoulCycle At-Home Bike Worth the Money?

Before COVID-19 became A Thing, I loved the gym—and not in that muscle head, fitness freak kind of way. I liked how it provided so many activities! I could lift weights, watch Vanderpump Rules on the treadmill, or chill in the sauna and call it a “workout.”

But last year, when city-wide shutdowns began, I found myself missing my sweaty sanctuary because at-home workouts just weren’t cutting it for me.

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I had zero motivation to change from my day-time PJs to workout attire, and pushing myself to do another rep with the couch right beside me is impossible.

Fortunately for me and my cardiovascular health, I discovered SoulCycle’s at-home bike a few months deep in quarantine living. And because I have a super cool job that lets me review these types of things (humble brag alert), the company hooked me up with one to try.

Variis

SoulCycle At-Home Bike

SoulCycle
variis.com

$2,500.00

As someone who loooooves spin classes but is also really freaking cautious of the alarmingly high-rate of Covid-19 cases—the at-home SoulCycle spin bike is The Move. I am now fully Team Home Workout. Here’s why.

The Pros

Everything (and I mean everything) is taken care of for you.

The whole process of getting the bike is super seamless. You go online and purchase it right from their website, then schedule a delivery time with J.B. Hunt (the moving company that transports your bike.) The day of delivery, they come and set it all up for you, so that it’s ready to go right then and there. I literally didn’t have to touch anything during the set-up—and thank goodness for that, because I am the least-handy person ever.

I did run into a smol issue after I realized the pedals were put on incorrectly, but
the SoulCycle customer service team was super-efficient, responsive, and helpful in getting someone out who could replace the pedals in about a week.

Oh, and while we’re on the subject, the SoulCycle at-home bike does come with a warranty too. According to their website, you have a one-year warranty on the touchscreen, a one-year warranty on the bike hardware parts, and a five-year warranty on the bike frame. So if something goes wrong, they’ll fix or replace it for free.

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The Variis app is seriously amazing.

This is the monthly subscription ($40 a month) you use to access live SoulCycle classes. But there’s also an amazing library of on-demand spin classes you can take any time. I used the app to filter according to what instructor I wanted, class length, which kind of playlist I was in the mood to listen to, and other preferences.

But, in addition to the SoulCycle spin class options you have, there’s also a load of other fitness brands offering workouts on demand, like Equinox, Headstrong, Rumble, Pure Yoga, Precision Run, and TB12.

variis app

Variis

I loved the MetCon classes from Equinox. It’s basically strength training (you do need dumbbells for some classes), but my heart rate was up the whole time. I also was super into Headstrong, an app that offers morning, evening, and whenever/wherever meditation options.

Basically, I would 100 percent give all my $$ to the Variis app anyway—with or without the bike.

It’s sooo convenient.

There’s something refreshing about rolling out of bed and hopping right into a spin class without even brushing your teeth. The convenience factor is the BIG win here. If I wanted to do a class at 6:30 a.m., I could. If I wanted to do one at 2:45 a.m. after doom-scrolling Twitter, I could. It’s totally on your time and adaptable to your schedule.

The classes will, uh, kick your ass.

Let me tell you, this bike Worked! My! Booty! Out! Like, after each spin ride, I noticed it gave my butt a little extra plumpety plump plump, if you know what I mean.

The bike helped me increase my cardio fitness—I’m talking like, lots and lots of sweat happening here—and was the perfect reason to take a thirst trap afterward. Like this one. Sorry.

my plump booty

Taylor Andrews

The SoulCycle instructors are *Chefs Kiss*.

Oh, I should probably mention that I’d never taken a SoulCycle class prior to trialing the bike, but I was v impressed with how therapeutic the classes were. I fully get the hype now. The instructors pushed me while offering advice that is probably cheaper than any therapy sesh. Even on days when I wasn’t really feeling it, post-class I felt energized.

Basically, Victoria is the person I want to guide me when the world is going to shit. And when Matt Miller played “Halo” by Maren Morris during his live class, I’m not ashamed to admit I started crying. In a good way. It’s? Totally? Normal?

The Cons

It’s quite a bit of $$$.

Consider the bike, well, an investment. The bike alone is $2,500 with shipping and handling. But that price excludes the monthly Variis app you need to take classes, the shoes you need to clip into the bike, the weights for the arm section of class, and any other accessories you might want (read: a seat cushion). So, like I said, it’s an investment.

If you want a lil comparison and breakdown of the costs, I’m about to do some math for ya. A single in-person SoulCycle class is $36 (or $39 if you need to rent shoes). So the price of the bike alone is worth about 70 individual SoulCycle classes.

If you have the means though, I do think it’s worth it for your health and convenience—especially as we all wait (not-so) patiently for a vaccination.

The music is kind of meh.

Part of what I loooove about spin classes is the music. Especially since the rhythm and beat of the song is what carries me through a workout. While the music isn’t bad, I noticed that I wasn’t singing along and vibing as much as I normally do during a spin sesh.

That could be totally on me though, as each of the instructors have a different music vibe, so maybe I wasn’t taking the right classes? Whomst knows! But fear not, like I said, it wasn’t that big of a deal. I still got down to some Drake and old school NSYNC.

SoulCycle doesn’t focus on the numbers of your workout.

This can be a pro or con depending on what you like. But, personally, I enjoy looking at the numbers and analytics behind my workout. And while the SoulCycle at-home bike does show you your cadence, power (which is a combination of your resistance + speed), and distance, you can’t see individually how much resistance you have.

variis soulcycle at home bike

Dominic Neitz

In other spin classes I’ve taken, the instructor gives you a range of resistance that they want you to stay at for a certain interval like “Alright, get your resistance up to 16-20 and your RPM (aka cadence) should be at ____ pace.” But with SoulCycle, you’re sorta on your own. Again, it’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just their style.

You find your RPM based on the beat of the music (which your instructor will help you find), but they just tell you to “turn your resistance knob to the right” so it’s completely in your hands how much or little you add. I just enjoy more concrete directions, I guess?

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The bike itself is pretty large and bulky.

The bike is 62″ by 22″ by 53″ and weighs around 130 pounds. I don’t know about you, but I literally cannot translate dimensions into a visual. So when I saw it for the first time, I was surprised how much space it took up.

Luckily, I’m riding out the pandemic in my parent’s basement in Kansas City, so space isn’t really an issue here. But if you’re in a tiny shoebox of an apartment, it might be hard to find space for this one.

The verdict

After everything that happened last year, and is still, unfortunately, happening this year, I think it’s important for everyone to prioritize mental health right. I made it a goal for 2021. For me, physical fitness is directly correlated with my anxiety and stress, so this SoulCycle at-home bike helped me sooooo much.

If you would like to actively improve your mental and physical health this new year, maybe because you want to sleep better or have more energy or escape some negative and/or anxious thoughts, this one (which ships in one to three weeks) is for you, fam.

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