17-03-2023 |

Indoor Cycling terms, these are the most commonly used

Indoor Cycling terms

While following a workout, you may have come across Indoor Cycling terms that you are not at all familiar with. The trainer sprinkles terms like “freezes” or “jumps” as if they are the most normal terms in the world, and RPM or cadence? What is that actually about? Rest assured, because we set up common Indoor Cycling terms for you.


RPM refers to the speed at which you pedal. RPM stands for Rounds Per Minute. So if you are pedaling at a speed of 100 RPM, you are pedaling 100 revolutions per minute. A trainer can use RPM to give an indication of how fast you should pedal. Often this is equal or double the pace of the beat of the music you are cycling to. Some Indoor Cycling bikes have a built-in RPM meter, allowing you to see exactly how many revolutions per minute you are pedaling. The Schwinn 800IC is an example of such a bike with a built-in RPM meter.


The term “cadence” is often used in cycling workouts and refers to the number of revolutions per minute (RPM) of the bicycle pedals. A higher cadence means the pedals are spinning faster, while a lower cadence means the pedals are spinning slower but with more force. Determining the right cadence depends on several factors, including the cyclist’s fitness level, goals and resistance on the bike. Proper cadence can help reduce stress on muscles and joints and increase the efficiency of the workout.


Wattage is also one of the Indoor Cycling terms you often come across. It refers to the amount of energy you produce while cycling on a spin bike, expressed in watts. Wattage is an important measure of the intensity of your workout and can be used to improve your performance. By measuring and tracking your wattage, you can better tailor your workouts to your fitness goals and track your progress. In addition, wattage can also be used in group exercise classes to standardize the intensity of the workout and ensure that all participants train at a similar level.

Heart rate zone is a commonly used Indoor Cycling term

Heart rate (Zones)

One of the most commonly used indoor cycling terms is actually a term used in more sports. Your heart rate is a good indicator of how hard your body is struggling during a workout. For example, a good heart rate zone during low-intensity endurance training is between 50 and 65% of your maximum heart rate. This heart rate zone is also called the fat-burning zone because your body burns a lot of fat in this heart rate zone. During interval training, the goal is precisely to have your heart rate spike and come back to rest as quickly as possible.

Training with heart rate zones is a great way to improve your fitness and lose weight. We’ve listed all the benefits for you.

Power levels

CycleMasters’ workouts talk a lot about Power Levels. Based on these Power Levels, a workout is built toward a certain goal or intensity. For example, you can assume that a workout consisting mainly of levels 2 and 3 is a low intensity class. If you want an advanced class at high intensity, then you will choose a workout that includes many Power Levels 4 and 5. The Power levels are linked to heart rate zones. With a heart rate link between the workout and your heart rate sensor, you know exactly whether you are training at the right intensity.

Intensity level

During a workout, a trainer can use resistance levels. These levels are a combination of the desired RPM or BPM and resistance. Level 1 is warm-up and at level 5 you are exercising at maximum intensity. Level 1 is about 50-60% of your maximum heart rate, level 4 is 80-90%. Try to stick to these levels and you can be sure you are training effectively. For beginners, after warming up (level 1), it is good to train in levels 2 and 3 at low resistance. Advanced cyclists can alternate between levels 3, 4 and sprints at level 5. Read the blog sports with a heart rate monitor to learn more about these zones.

Resistance is important with an Indoor Cycling class


Indoor cycling terms may also have to do with the type of class you take. HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training, which means a workout consists of short periods of intense exercise interspersed with short periods of rest. In Indoor Cycling workouts, HIIT can be applied by, for example, doing a 30-second sprint, followed by 30 seconds of gentle cycling, and repeating this pattern with over a period of time. The advantage of HIIT is that it is an effective way to burn calories and improve fitness in a relatively short period of time.

Cardio Interval

Cardio Interval is a term that refers to a training method in which the participant alternates between intense and less intense cardiovascular exercises. In spinning, this is usually accomplished by changing the bike’s resistance and varying the pace. Cardio Interval training is an effective way to increase heart rate, improve cardiovascular health and overall fitness. It can also help burn calories and build muscle strength and endurance. In Indoor Cycling, Cardio Interval training is a popular and challenging way to train your body and achieve your fitness goals.


Endurance training in Indoor Cycling focuses on building endurance through longer and intense exercise. During a workout, participants are challenged to cycle at a moderate to high intensity for extended periods of time, with the goal of increasing heart rate and breathing and strengthening muscles. Endurance training can help improve cardiovascular health, increase energy and endurance, and reduce the risk of chronic disease.


A recovery workout in a spinning workout focuses on recovering and relaxing the muscles after an intense workout. These workouts are designed to give the body a chance to recover and lower the heart rate. During a recovery workout, the intensity of the spinning workout will be reduced so that the emphasis is on light cardio exercises and gentle, controlled movements. This can be done, for example, by cycling at a slower pace, with less resistance or by doing some relaxation exercises, such as stretching and breathing exercises.

Doing regular recovery training after an intense spin workout can prevent injury and help the body recover better for the next workout.


Although we talk about an Indoor Cycling workout, many people also talk about taking a Spinning® class. And both forms of cycling are also incredibly similar. You use a spinning bike or Indoor Cycling bike, and you do more or less the same exercises while changing the intensity during the workout at the direction of an instructor. Yet the two are not the same. The difference between spinning® and Indoor Cycling is mainly found in the origin of the two.

Learn more about the difference between Spinning® and Indoor Cycling.

Indoor Cycling exercises

In addition to the above Indoor Cycling terms, there are also terms often used in class that designate the different exercises. If you are just starting out with Indoor Cycling, you may need a few lessons to master these exercises. We have included each of the exercises in our workout offerings as learn the moves videos, but you can also find them on our YouTube channel.

Do you enjoy tracking your progress and want to know more about this? Then read more in the blog Sports with statistics. More Indoor Cycling terms are explained to you here.

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