Photo by SLY Photography

2016 Spinlist: Top Indoor Cycling Songs to Fuel Your Training

Studies have shown that athletes work out harder while listening to music with a faster tempo. No one knows this better than indoor cyclists, who flock to indoor cycling studios across the country for grueling workouts set to blood-pumping beats. In these classes, music isn’t merely background noise – it is a crucial part of the workout.

Cycling playlists aren’t one-size-fits-all. Each rider or instructor has their own style, so it’s important to find music that works for you. We asked five top indoor cycling instructors across the country to find out their favorite cycling songs right now. Here are their suggestions – use these as a base to create your own playlist. Plug in your earbuds, pull up DuVine Spinlist on Spotify, crank up the volume, and start pedaling!

Tolland Weems

Aura Cycle | Los Angeles, CA

Sal Salbella

SoulCycle Back Bay Studio | Boston, MA

Spinlist Tip: What makes an awesome playlist for indoor cycling?
According to Sal Salbella from Soul Cycle in Boston, “a great spinning playlist is filled with recognizable songs, but also songs that have a good, strong beat that motivates you to keep your legs going, even when you’re tired.”

Jack McGowan

Equinox on 17th Street | New York, NY

Melinda Sarkis

Former Instructor at Flywheel | Back Bay, Boston, MA

Jenna Ballard

Aura Cycle | Los Angeles, CA

  • Beam Me Up – Cazzette
    GREAT SONG FOR setting the tone at the beginning of the class. This one gets people in the mood as the song starts to rev up. The beat has a sweet build up, and then there’s a huge climax to get the riders into Beast Mode.
  • WTF (Where They From) – Missy Elliot feat. Pharrell Williams
    GREAT SONG FOR incorporating upper body moves. It’s quick but has a variety of beats to play with.
  • DJ Turn It Up- Yellow Claw
    GREAT SONG FOR getting the riders out of the saddle for sprints and tap backs. The bass hits hard, but it’s quick enough to keep them motivated to pedal that flywheel faster.
  • Elastic Heart – Sia
    GREAT SONG FOR steady climbing in the saddle with a few quick runs up the hill.
  • Thundercat – Pyramid Scheme + Ying Yang Twins
    GREAT SONG FOR explosive moves out of the saddle at the end of the class, when you want to give yourself oneself one last chance to push hard.

Spinlist Tip: What makes an awesome playlist for indoor cycling?
Jenna Ballard from Aura Cycle in Los Angeles says that “a variety of fresh dance beats and classic hip hop keeps the class interesting and on-point.” A great playlist is not just about the individual songs, but also about the overarching flow of the music. “Unless it’s a themed ride, I prefer playlists with a smorgasbord of genres,” Ballard says. “I create my playlists as if they’re stories so it all has to make sense and flow together. I take my riders on a journey, and the music carries them through their transformation.”

Lola Remy

BodyScapes Fitness | Kendall Square, Cambridge, MA

Rachele Pojednic

Former Instructor at Flywheel | Back Bay, Boston, MA

  • Holding on For Life – Ellie Goulding
    GREAT SONG FOR warming up. The words and the pace get you out of your day and into the saddle. For this song, I change around the pace of your pedal stroke, getting your heart rate up and muscles ready for a 45 minute set of challenging intervals.
  • Hello – Adele – Morton Remix
    GREAT SONG FOR hill climbing. This song has a killer drop that you can crank up the torq (what we call “gear” at Flywheel), get up out of your saddle, and climb.
  • Vogue – Madonna
    GREAT SONG FOR staying in the saddle and playing around with RPMs so you can just sweat and enjoy it, not even realizing how hard you’re working! This is a great throwback song.
  • All My Life – Foo Fighters
    GREAT SONG FOR digging into a more intense zone. During this song, I like to surprise people with a set of tapbacks (usually reserved for more dance-y songs) followed by a seated push as hard as you can!
  • Pray to God – Calvin Harris/HAIM – R3hab Remix
    GREAT SONG FOR sprinting. With a built in “3,2,1” countdown before the drop, you can just close your eyes, turn your brain off and ride!

Spinlist Tip: What makes an awesome playlist for indoor cycling?
Rachele Pojednic from Flywheel in Boston says there are two important parts to making a killer playlist. “The first is that you have to choose songs that make YOU want to ride hard. If you can’t connect with the songs, nobody else in the room will either. The second important element, while choosing songs that get you going, is to also include a song that every single person in the room can identify with and relate to. There should be that one song that each rider will remember and leave thinking, ‘That was amazing!'”

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