Tech Specs


Build Quality


Exercise Bike Review

Updated: January 16, 2024

Who said exercise had to be uncomfortable? Sure, your legs might burn from working hard and you might get out of breath, but the NordicTrack R35 helps you cycle in a seated position with lumbar support. The R35 is perfect for athletes who want to train their lower bodies without the high impact and coordination required by other cardio machines. With a large touchscreen display and a whole suite of smart features, the R35 is best for iFIT subscribers or those who plan to subscribe. The onscreen content tours global locations guided by professional coaches. The NordicTrack R35 makes iFIT training more suited to users with balance issues, those recovering from injury, and exercisers with restricted mobility.

NordicTrack R35 Recumbent Exercise Bike Review
The NordicTrack R35 Recumbent Bike is a more comfortable alternative to studio bikes.

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Who The NordicTrack R35 Is Best For:

  • iFIT Subscribers: This recumbent bike’s display only shows iFIT content, so if you want to make the most of the R35’s features, consider an iFIT membership.
  • Recovering Athletes: Whether you are recovering from injury or surgery, or building back up your exercise routine, the R35’s more relaxed design and lack of upper-body exercise may be more feasible for these athletes.
  • Older Exercisers: Or anyone with balance and mobility restrictions. The NordicTrack R35’s recumbent and step-through design offers a great cycling workout.
  • Cyclists with Back or Neck Pain: The NordicTrack R35’s lumbar support can make cycling more accessible for users with back or neck pain.

Pros And Cons Of The NordicTrack R35


  • The NordicTrack R35 supports iFIT’s premium training content.
  • The R35 has a recumbent and step-through design which is better for athletes with restricted mobility or balance.
  • The R35 has 26 challenging magnetic resistance levels.
  • The touchscreen display is 14 inches.
  • The R35’s weight capacity is 350 lbs.
  • Automatic resistance changes and an automatic fan allow for hands-free training.


  • The R35 is a heavy machine that cannot be moved or assembled easily, especially not alone.
  • The easiest resistance levels may be too challenging for some users.
  • The seat back is not very comfortable. I recommend using additional padding or support for an improved feel.

Exercise Bike Review Of The NordicTrack R35

Build Quality

NordicTrack R35 Moving
The R35 is not the easiest to move around.


The NordicTrack R35 has a steel frame. It is covered by a 10-year warranty, which is standard for NordicTrack. The R35 has a step-through frame which should be easier for most users to navigate. The R35’s design is very stable. It weighs nearly 200 lbs, so it is not going anywhere. I recommend assembling it in the location you plan to keep it for the long term. If you do need to transport it, it can be lifted in the back. The seat slide extends too far back for most users to grip the rear stabilizer with both arms, which makes the R35 particularly challenging to move. It may not be feasible for most users.

NordicTrack R35 Moving
The R35 has a step-through frame for easier accessibility.


The NordicTrack R35 has an oversized padded seat with a seat back. The seat back is a plastic mesh for breathability. However, this seat back is not the most comfortable. I suggest adding some padding to improve your comfort. I was able to log several workouts without using any additional padding, and the experience was just okay. The seat back is not adjustable, so some users may need additional lumbar support depending on their needs. The seat back is about 20 inches tall and 17 inches wide.

NordicTrack R35 Seat
The backrest is ventilated and the seat is padded, but I wish the backrest was also padded.

The seat cannot adjust vertically. It slides along a horizontal track that is slightly angled (to help with vertical adjustment). The seat sits 28 inches off of the ground at its highest position and has a reach of about 39 inches from the edge of the seat to the furthest pedaling position. At the lowest setting, the seat is 26.5 inches off the ground and has a reach of about 25 inches. The seat itself is 18 inches wide by 11 inches deep.


The only handles are located next to the seat; there are no handles near the console. The handles have a 6-inch grip area covered with soft plastic. Your arms rest along the side of your body and are comfortable to hold. You can easily change the resistance setting and the volume from this position, because there are buttons located on the ends of both handles. Many recumbent bikes have upright handles next to the console, but those are lacking on the R35.

NordicTrack R35 Handlebars
The handlebars are comfortably placed alongside the seat.


The pedals are flat pedals that measure about 4” x 4”, though they are rhombus-shaped (for those who hated geometry class: they are a slanted square). They have an adjustable strap that sits on the top of your foot to keep it in place. The straps easily adjust tighter and looser with a clip, so you can make use of the full pedal stroke. The straps do not cut into the top of your foot and feel fairly comfortable. These pedals should work with any athletic shoe.

NordicTrack R35 Pedal
The pedals are flat with an adjustable strap to fit most athletic shoes.

Resistance and Flywheel

The NordicTrack R35 has a 25-lb flywheel paired with magnetic resistance. There are 26 levels of resistance which are silent, so you can train pretty quietly. The magnet adjustment makes some noise. The R35’s resistance was much more challenging than I expected. Many exercise bikes feel effortless at the lowest level, but even level 1 provides some resistance. The 26th level is very challenging and will feel like performing a leg press for beginner exercisers. I had trouble completing a smooth pedaling stroke at this level, because it was so challenging. The R35 will challenge even experienced indoor cyclists.

NordicTrack R35 Resistance Buttons
The resistance controls on the handle are very convenient.

Features & Accessories

iFIT equips the R35 with smart training, so it has smart features to support the fitness training platform. The console requires you to sit up to reach it, so having the resistance and volume controls on the handles is much more convenient. The features work best when paired with an active iFIT subscription.

Console Overview

The touchscreen display is really the centerpiece of the R35’s console, but the bike also has a few off-screen buttons in addition to those located on the handles. I interacted with the screen the most when I was setting up a workout, and I relied on the buttons for the rest of the time. There are three sets of buttons on the console: volume, fan, and resistance. There’s also a Bluetooth indicator on embedded into the speakers. This does not have to be pressed to pair your device. The display is simple but has all the features you may need for effective and comfortable training.

NordicTrack R35 Console
The console is built to deliver the premium iFIT experience.


The NordicTrack R35 has a 14-inch touchscreen display. This screen size is sufficient for viewing iFIT’s training content and navigating the interface. The quality is good. The screen tilts slightly up and down. If you tilt the screen all the way down, you create a tiny ledge that could hold your phone but be cautious of it falling.

NordicTrack R35 Pivot Screen
The screen tilts slightly up and down to reduce glare.


Two cup holders sit behind each handle at the rear of the bike. It may be difficult for some users with restricted mobility to reach these cup holders. There is no additional storage on the R35. That means no dedicated device storage for your phone or tablet.

NordicTrack R35 Cup holder
The cup holders are located behind the seat and are not the most accessible.


I like the position and the power of the fan. I don’t need a floor or ceiling fan when training on the R35. The fan has multiple speeds including an AutoBreeze setting. AutoBreeze allows the fan to speed up or slow down as your exercise intensity increases. It’s just another way that iFIT provides hands-free training, where you don’t need to press buttons to achieve the right settings.

NordicTrack R35 Fan
The fan has multiple levels, including an automatic setting.


The speakers are front-facing. They allow you to hear the video audio or Feed.FM, an online radio with genre and decade stations with regularly updated music. The music and trainer volume can be set independently when using the onscreen controls. The volume buttons control the master volume, affecting the trainer and music volume together.

NordicTrack R35 Speakers
The speakers are front-facing for clear audio.


Bluetooth allows users to pair a heart rate monitor for heart rate training. Headphones can also be paired with the R35 for quiet training. Connecting a Bluetooth device is easy and smooth.


Recumbent bikes tend to be associated with easy conditioning. Testing the R35 was quite a shock for me. I spend most of my time cycling outdoors or on studio bikes, so I was not expecting what a challenge level one would be. I suggest scaling back your rpm if the bike proves too challenging. For those who have tried other NordicTrack equipment, I would say that level one on the R35 feels more like a level 6 or 7 on the S22i and S27i. Instead of having levels where your feet are basically spinning with no resistance, the R35 starts you off with enough resistance to keep you at a lower rpm.

NordicTrack R35 Training
The R35 kicks my butt a lot more than I care to admit, but I will.

I like the R35 a lot for cycling workouts between 10 to 45 minutes. It delivers an excellent workout in just a short amount of time. If you are returning to exercise after a break, it would be a great fit for you if you are only able to train for short sessions.

Subscription & Content Options

iFIT provides all of the onscreen content for the NordicTrack R35. The classes are mainly filmed outdoors. The content automatically controls your resistance levels. If you need to adjust the preset levels, iFIT will learn your fitness level over time to make your current class and future classes more effective. While iFIT does have plenty of cycling options, some of the features are solely designed for use with studio bikes. These bikes may support incline features or rising out of the saddle while the R35 does not. These classes will still guide your training, but you may have to ignore some of the non-compatible features. I also suggest ignoring the suggested rpm. It is too challenging on the R35, so don’t feel bad about dialing back your pedaling cadence.

NordicTrack R35 iFIT coach
The iFIT training classes are coach-led, provide guidance for your RPMs, and auto-adjust the resistance.

iFIT’s classes virtually transport you around the world. The trainers are motivating and professional as they provide instruction and teach you about the faraway places you are exploring. With one membership, you can create up to five unique training profiles for your whole family. You can also use the off-the-bike content to add strength or yoga classes into your routine. If you have other iFIT-compatible equipment, your account can be used to train on those machines as well. iFIT can replace your gym membership if you want it to.

NordicTrack R35 Google Maps
The Google Maps integration allows you to make a virtual route anywhere in the world.

For users who do not want to subscribe, the NordicTrack R35 has limited features. You can train in manual mode and see your metrics visible on the screen. There may also be featured content from iFIT, so you can test out a couple of the classes. All in all, the NordicTrack R35 Recumbent Bike is best for users who have an active iFIT subscription or plan to subscribe.

Bottom Line Review of the NordicTrack R35 Recumbent Bike

The NordicTrack R35 Recumbent Bike is the perfect solution to the less comfortable postures needed for upright or studio cycling. This recumbent bike is best for users who are recovering from illness, injury, or surgery and can only handle short training sessions. It is also a great choice for athletes newly returning to an exercise routine or those who have limited balance and mobility. The NordicTrack R35 has 26 silent magnetic resistance levels and Bluetooth audio, so you can train quietly with iFIT’s awesome classes. The R35 is lacking in features for non-subscribers. Still, the R35 has impressive smart features that make training hands-free and engaging.

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