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



To rapidly pedal a bicycle

Example usage: I spun my way up the hill with ease.

Most used in: Mountain biking, road cycling and gravel grinding.

Most used by: Cyclists who like to push themselves to the limit.

Popularity: 8/10

Comedy Value: 2/10

Also see: Cadence, Pedaling, Revolutions, Cranking,


What Does 'Spun' Mean in Cycling?

The term 'spun' is used in cycling to refer to when a cyclist is no longer able to produce enough power to keep up with the demands of the ride. This usually occurs after a period of intense effort or a steep climb. It is most often used in the context of a group ride, where riders have to work together to maintain a consistent speed.

When a cyclist 'spins out,' they are no longer able to turn the pedals at a fast enough rate to keep up with the group. This can happen when a rider is fatigued, or when the terrain is too difficult for them to maintain the desired speed. In some cases, the cyclist may be able to recover and rejoin the group, while in other cases they may need to drop off and take a rest.

Spinning out is a common problem amongst cyclists, especially those who are just starting out. According to a survey of over 500 cyclists, nearly half of them had experienced spinning out at least once while riding. The most common causes of spinning out were fatigue, inadequate gearing, and lack of experience.

While spinning out can be a frustrating experience, it is an important part of learning how to ride. It is important for cyclists to understand why they are spinning out and how to prevent it in the future. With practice and experience, spinning out will become less frequent and cyclists will be able to push their limits and become better riders.


From Spinning to Spun: The Origin of the Cycling Term

The term ‘spun’ in the context of cycling has been used since the early 1990s. It began to be used more widely in the mid-1990s. The origin of the word is believed to be from spinning classes, which were popularized in the United States in the late 1980s. In cycling, the term ‘spun’ refers to a rider being completely exhausted or having ‘hit the wall’, and is usually used to describe a situation when the rider has to stop because of fatigue.

In spinning classes, the instructor would use music and verbal cues to lead the class in a highly intense workout. The idea of spinning as a form of fitness was born from this, and the term ‘spun’ was used to describe the feeling of being completely exhausted after an intense ride. This term was adopted by cyclists and is still used today to describe a rider who has been pushed to their limits.

The term ‘spun’ is now commonly used in the cycling world, and is often used to describe a situation when a rider has pushed themselves too far and has to stop because of fatigue. Whether it’s a spin class or a cycling race, the term ‘spun’ is used to describe a rider’s fatigue and exhaustion.

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