I know a lot of people want to reach at the end of a confusion which is exercise bike vs treadmill for toning legs. In this article, I’ll give a detailed answer to that and satisfy your confusion once and for all.

Treadmill and exercise bikes are undoubtedly the most famous cardiovascular exercise equipment for both home and gym. Both of these machines are enough to give you an impressive body shape but these two are always very competitive with each other. Both machines have their own set of advantage and disadvantages.

From the very beginning, people have been in this confusion, whether they should buy a treadmill or exercise bike and that’s a never-ending argument.

However, today I am here to give you a clear picture of what actually is effective for toning the legs. So let’s get started,

What Does Toning Leg Muscle Mean?

Toning muscle means having a good shape of muscle in hand, leg or any part of the body. Genetics plays a massive role in how your muscles are shaped. But your leg muscle mostly depends on your daily workout routines. Even you have a bad muscle shape, toning legs can reshape your leg muscle and give them an impressive sleek look.

Exercise bike and treadmill both are a good option for having a strong leg muscle but in order to have great leg muscles, there are some resistance requirements to be followed.

Which Does It Better? Treadmill Or Exercise Bike?

Less weight is what helps you much to get a pair of impressive legs and for losing weight there is nothing better than an aerobic exercise. According to the United States Department of health and human service, every adult should have at least 3 hours of exercise in a week. Doesn’t matter where you will be doing this exercise, whether, in treadmill or exercise, both will burn you 300 calories in an hour.

Exercise Bike:

Exercise bike definitely helps to build beautiful legs through the exercise of Quadriceps muscle. Quadriceps are the upper thigh muscles of the leg. And the hamstring muscle works in an order by releasing and contracting to make the leg push the cycle pedal. The hamstrings are a solid band of muscles which are attached to the lower section of the pelvis and down to the back of our leg before the knee. And during this exercise, the calf muscle, the soleus, and gastrocnemius also receive a workout.

Exercise bike allows anyone to work out on it. People who faced major injuries, exercise bikes are a great option for them to regain their strength back. On the other hand, using an exercise bike is very safe, requires less maintenance, requires less space, makes less noise and cheaper than treadmills.


Treadmills also are a great option to strengthen lower bodies. If you are walking on a treadmill that is counted as a low-intensity workout but that still can help you to shape your leg muscles. During exercising on a treadmill, your calves, quads, hamstrings, hips, and glutes also receives exercise.

And the obvious thing is, more intensity will give you nicer muscles but that being said, running on a treadmill is not easy for everyone. People who have ankle, bone or back issue, treadmill can be very harsh on them.


Treadmills and exercise bikes both are great for shaping leg muscles. However, the answer to which one is better for toning legs solely depends on you. If you think you are strong enough, you can go with the treadmills. But I won’t recommend treadmill for fatty peoples at the very beginning.

First, you should burn some weight by exercising on the bike as that is a safer way. Get your body used to that situation if you have never done intensive exercise before. Once you have loosened up some weight and gained increased stamina level, now you are ready to roll on the treadmill.

For aged adults, exercise bike would be the best choice for toning their legs, as treadmills put much pressure on the joints and that could be hard for an aged adult.

On the other hand, after running for a while in treadmills, when stamina level gets down, an aged adult can easily end up falling which could be very serious.

Plus, treadmill for the home can be very demanding, as it will require large space and heavy maintenance which won’t be easy on most wallets and most importantly, treadmills won’t allow you to exercise whenever you want, as they will start making irritating noise when you will start hitting that belt.

Overall, I think an exercise bike is what most people will prefer more. They don’t require much space, doesn’t need heavy maintenance and most of them could be done by yourself and there are some quiet exercise bikes which make less to no sound when you are on it.

How To Tone Legs With Both Treadmill And Exercise Bike?

On the upper section, I made a comparison of exercise bike vs treadmill for toning legs and the result was both can do it well with the right exercise.

So in this section, I am going to show you how you can build your impressive leg muscles using both of these machines.

Let’s go,

Exercise Bike:

Starting with the exercise bike. In an exercise bike, you can build up your leg muscles by pushing pedals against a resistance but that’s not as simple as it seems. There are some guidelines you have to follow in order to get the best out of your exercise. Below I am showing step by step, how you should start and finish your exercise on a bike.

Step 1

Right before you push yourself into a high-intensity exercise, it’s always important to have 10 minutes of warm-up session at very low resistance just to make it easier for your body to adopt the situation when you will be exercising in a higher intensity.

Step 2

Like most newbies, don’t set a high resistance level at the beginning, you have to increase the resistance level slowly.

Step 3

When cycling we activate different leg muscles. For example, during pushing the pedal down you are activating your quads muscle and when taking your leg up in a rounding motion the back of your legs is receiving exercise. And the more you increase the resistance level, the more weight you will be able to burn for your legs and upper thigh.

Step 4

Most certified health researchers recommend exercising on a bike standing for at least 10 minutes in every exercise session. It activates not only lower body muscles but some upper body muscles too.

And this is how you can use the exercise bike for toning your legs but make sure you choose a stable exercise bike. Otherwise, you will notice unwanted wobbling of the bike when you are exercising on it.


On a treadmill, you can do entire lower body workout and some upper body workouts too. When you run on a treadmill your quads, glutes, hamstrings and clave muscles gets activated. 30 minutes running on a treadmill can burn 300 to 450 calories depending on your body weight and height.

Anyways, there are different ways of starting and finishing the exercise on a treadmill. Below I have shown a way which is recommended by some certified health researchers.

Step 1

Before you start running on higher intensity, set the incline into zero and walk or run on the treadmill at a slow pace for 10 minutes to break a sweat without holding the handles.

Step 2

After the warm-up session you can increase your speed from 3.5 to 4 mph. You should set the speed which is perfect for you. How would you decide that? At a speed where you can breathe and speak is the perfect speed for you. And by the time when you get fit, you will be able to run faster.

Step 3

Now you can increase the incline in between 3 to 4%. If you can’t talk properly, you can lower the speed and it would be very wise to take all the steps on the treadmill. One misstep can cost you severely.

Step 4

Increase the speed slowly with time. And don’t put too much pressure on the first week, go slow and steady. You don’t have to work out for hours in the first week on the treadmill. Slowly increase the duration of your workout.

So that’s how you can use a treadmill to tone your leg muscles. In treadmills, you have to take each step very carefully. Any misstep will cause you falling and if you fall running at a higher speed, that can lead you to a serious accident.

That’s why I don’t recommend treadmills for aged adults, an exercise bike it good for them.

To learn more about the comparison:

It is time to wrap up now. I hope this article has helped you to clear your confusions on exercise bike vs treadmill for toning legs. I will appreciate any suggestion from you, so don’t forget to put that in the comment box if you have one. If you liked this article don’t forget to share it with your friends and family.

Take care!