Saddle Slang is sponsored by Rehook. Check out our tools, bike care and apparel

ped-uh-ling rate


Pedalling rate is the number of revolutions of the pedals per minute.

Example usage: We need to increase our pedalling rate if we want to finish the race in time.

Most used in: Cycling competitions and events.

Most used by: Professional and competitive cyclists.

Popularity: 8/10

Comedy Value: 2/10

Also see: Cadence, Revs, RPM, Crank Speed,

What is Pedalling Rate?

Pedalling Rate, also known as cadence, is the number of pedal revolutions a cyclist makes per minute. This is usually measured in revolutions per minute (RPM). It is an important metric for cyclists, as it can indicate the efficiency of their ride and help them better understand their performance.

Generally, a higher pedalling rate means the cyclist is more efficient and is expending less energy for the same amount of work. This is because a higher pedalling rate reduces the amount of time spent pushing on the pedals, which reduces the amount of energy used. Studies have shown that the optimal pedalling rate for most cyclists is between 70 to 90 RPM.

Pedalling rate is also an important factor in determining the cyclist’s power output. A higher pedalling rate means that the cyclist is able to generate more power, which can be used to increase speed or help them climb hills. It is also important to note that pedalling rate should be adjusted depending on the terrain, as a higher pedalling rate may not always be beneficial.

By understanding their pedalling rate, cyclists can better optimize their ride and improve their performance. This can be done by making small adjustments to their pedalling rate and monitoring the effects on their performance.


The Origin of the Cycling Term “Pedalling Rate”

The term “pedalling rate” was first used in the early 19th century in the United Kingdom and Europe. It was initially used to describe the speed and power at which a cyclist was pedalling. This was important for competitive cyclists who wanted to measure their performance.

The term was adopted by professional cycling teams in the 1920s as they began to use scientific testing to measure the performance of their riders. This allowed them to measure pedalling rate, as well as other metrics such as cadence, power output, and heart rate.

Today, the term “pedalling rate” is used by cyclists all over the world to measure their performance and progress. It is also used by coaches and trainers to help athletes improve their performance and reach their goals.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

Saddle Slang

Find definitions for all of the technical terms, slang, and acronyms used in cycling. From the different types of bikes and their components, to training techniques, racing terminology and put downs, this dictionary has it all.

Talk the Talk
1 of 3