Defining the Cadence Ride

There’s a why behind everything we do.

As we move into a new year and renew our fitness goals, and as more and more spin studios pop up around the city, we want to give you a clear idea of exactly what you can expect from a Cadence ride. It might sound silly to those new to spin to say that there are so many different types of rides being offered out there. Spin is spin is spin, right? Wrong. Each studio has its own philosophy, its own methods, its own goals, its own rhythm.

Let’s define the Cadence ride.

1) Power

First and foremost, Cadence offers a power-focused ride. This means that your Classic Cadence rides will be made up of lots of climbs. Hills will be longer and heavier than you might be accustomed to at other spin studios, and speed work will also have a definitively strength-based feel. (There’s no bouncing around or 130RPM sprints going on here; your legs are working the entire time.) Expect to become close friends with that tension dial and gear shift – you will be using them frequently throughout the ride, constantly playing with resistance to continue pushing yourself. We encourage you to use the console and track your watts so that you have a clear idea of your power output. (Read more on riding with watts here.) The result? You actually get stronger.

2) Music

Music is the driving force behind our rides. It guides our movements and provides much-needed motivation. (Read more on how music guides the ride here.) Every stroke of the pedal is choreographed to the beat. However, there’s none of that “left-right, left-right” nonsense. We find that kind of instruction intimidating and distracting, not motivating. Instead, your instructor will give you some “1-2” counts to help you find the beat and will let you know what RPM you’re aiming for to hit the rhythm of the music, all in an effort to encourage the group to ride together and to fulfill the intention of the exercise, but if you’re off the beat, it’s really no big deal. You do you. Just let the music help to push you up that hill!

3) Inclusivity

Our philosophy on music carries into our philosophy on resistance, movement, and everything else. That is, you do you. Your instructor has planned a ride with a specific intention in mind, and every instruction you’re getting is in service of that intention, but, ultimately, this is your ride. You don’t have to add tension every time you’re asked to, you don’t have to stand up when everybody else does, and you don’t have to take a recovery if you don’t need one. We understand that you might have an injury you’re working through, you might be new to spin and still figuring out how your body moves on the bike, your energy might be different than usual today, or you might be at your peak performance level and ready to push hard. Modifications and adjustments are encouraged, as your instructor will remind you throughout the ride, and we’ve specifically designed our rides to suit every fitness and experience level and to allow for those modifications. There’s no judgment here. Our goal is to set you up for success, not failure.

4) Goal-Setting

The Cadence ride is not about dancing on the bike. The Cadence ride is about getting a solid work out. We know that people flock to Cadence for all different sorts of reasons, and we love the diversity of our clientele, but we assume that each of you climbs onto that bike with some sort of fitness goal in mind. Whether you just want to sprinkle some sweaty cardio into your weekly routine or you’re training for a PB at your next race, we encourage you to have a specific, measurable goal that you’re working towards. Our rides are designed to help you reach those goals. While our sense of community is so strong that you’ll find people lingering long after class, sipping their coffee and chatting, and while the room inevitably turns into a sweaty, loud, pulsating space every single time, we don’t lose sight of the fact that our purpose is to help you reach your fitness goals. We want to see you get stronger over time, and we love celebrating those successes with you.

5) Intention

There’s a why behind everything we do. Every piece of the ride, every part of your experience, is in service of a greater intention. We want you to be able to give yourself over to the ride with the trust that your instructor has got your back. Every instructor has a ton of experience and knowledge behind each decision they’ve made; we’re not jumping now just for the hell of it or starting our ride with a climb for no reason. The Cadence ride has been carefully crafted. It’s why our riders do get stronger, and continuously set higher bars for themselves. Whether you’re jumping in Pauline’s Rhythm Ride or on the ninth minute of your climb in Jaclyn’s Classic Cadence Class, you’re there for a reason.

All in all, the Cadence ride is a power-based, music-driven, goal-focused ride, that has been carefully crafted to make room for every type of rider imaginable. If you have any questions about what to expect or want to know more about why we do what we do, leave a comment below. We’ll see you on the bike!

How Watching Watts Can Improve Your Ride

You’ll be amazed by the changes you feel

We’ve been on our Stages bikes at Cadence for over a year now and it’s safe to say they’re a crowd pleaser! The biggest difference with the transition to new bikes was the console. While some people resist change, others couldn’t wait to try something new, and while some people initially found the onscreen numbers to be daunting or distracting, others were excited to have the accountability and motivation of tangible measurements.

Before diving a little deeper into how the console can help you improve your ride, we want to remind you that you never have to use the console when riding at Cadence. Our instructors will always cue to both RPM and the beat, and to watts and perceived exertion. What does that mean? Well, it means that your instructor will frequently give you a watt range and an RPM range to work within (more on that in a second), but they will also make sure that the RPM they cue is right on the beat (1,2 1,2), so that you can simply ride to the music, and they’ll give you a number on a scale of 1-10 as a perceived exertion at which to ride.

You’re all familiar with perceived exertion. We like to say that 0/10 is sitting on the couch and 10/10 is the hardest you can possibly push. That puts your “flat road” at a 5/10, meaning that your entire ride will range from your 5/10 to a final push that reaches for your 10/10. How do you define those numbers? What do they feel like in your body? Well, that takes us into the “perceived” part of the calculation. Everybody has a different way of defining different effort levels. If you’re unsure how you should feel at, say, a 7/10, then talk to your instructor about what type of sensation you can be looking for at different points along the perceived exertion scale. They can help you find a way to define those numbers that works best for you.

But, if you do like using the console, then that takes a bunch of the guesswork out of the equation. You will have noticed that, during the warm up, your instructor will cue you to find your flat road by finding your 5/10 in between 75 and 100 watts. Even though that’s a big range for you to play in, it gives you a specific number to use to guide the rest of your ride. Once you find whatever feels like your flat road within that range, you have a number that you know is your 5/10 perceived exertion.

Why do we love this so much? Because now you have something to hold you accountable for the rest of the ride. You can keep your eye on the screen not only as you climb and as you push through breathless intervals, but also as you come out of intervals and as you take quick active recoveries. Are your watts dropping below the number that you defined as your flat road, or below the base effort at which the instructor has asked you to be riding? Oops! Time to refocus and get back to the ride. You’ll be amazed by the changes you’ll feel by simply using the console to keep you accountable in between the big efforts.


So you’ve got your number, somewhere between 75 and 100, that you know is your 5/10 – your flat road. But what watts should you be looking for when you’re asked to hit your 7/10, or 7.5, or 9? The best way to know is to take the Cadence Fitness Challenge. This “class” pops up on our schedule every once in a while, and is really a test that will gauge your average power output. This number will be used to generate a chart that will very clearly indicate what watts are equivalent to your perceived exertions.

If you haven’t had the chance to take the Cadence Fitness Challenge, then there are still certain watts you can use as a guide. Watts range so greatly though from person to person, depending on factors such as weight, height, and so on, that it’s best to talk to your instructor so they can help you come up with personal goals. All of our instructors love to chat and strive to help you have your best ride possible, so don’t be afraid to ask!

Another great way you can use the console to guide your ride is to keep track of your average watts. Next time you take a class in which you feel strong and energetic, make note of your average watts for that ride. Set a goal for how you want to see that number increase during your next ride (bringing your watts up by 5 from one ride to the next is a fantastic goal), and if you reach that goal, then you have tangible proof that you are getting stronger and improving!

Remember that you don’t have complete control over your own watts – the instructor has a say, too. The way the ride is designed will effect your average watts. For example, if there is less climbing and more jumping, there’s less opportunity to increase your average watts, and, instead, more opportunity to work on balance, agility, speed, core strength, and so on – every ride has a different intention behind it. In general, Cadence offers power-focused rides, though, so if you love those watts, then you’re in luck!

The gist? If you don’t want to use the console, don’t! It’s all good. If you do want to use it, then there are a bunch of ways that watching your watts can help you you improve your ride. You can use it to check your watts in between pushes and during recoveries to hold you accountable, to push you toward a target average, and to define your different stages along the perceived exertion scale.

Keep your eye on the schedule and on our social media to know when the Cadence Fitness Challenge is coming up next! And remember, the ride is never all about the numbers. It’s all about getting sweaty, challenging yourself, and letting your body surprise you!

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below!

Cadence x Kits Energy Winter Training Program

We are so excited to share that Cadence has partnered up with Kits Energy to host a 12 week winter training program for a 3rd year in a row.

Kits Energy is a Vancouver based cycling club that offers workouts and training for cyclists of all fitness levels. Please click here for more information on Kits Energy! 

This 12 week progressive training program will be designed and coached by one of Kits Energy's coaches Facundo Chernikoff, one of Cadence’s instructors Gregg Ambrosi will also be assisting in coaching.

The goal of this program is to help you prepare for any fitness or lifestyle endeavours that you have coming up in the Spring/Summer. You will leave this 12 week program stronger and fitter than when you started. The program will be based on Watts (power) and the workouts will be high intensity. The programming will be based on indoor/outdoor cycling principles and techniques, but will benefit anyone who just wants to get stronger. 

The class is open to all fitness levels, however a basic knowledge of Cadence classes or using power meters is recommended. 

If this sounds awesome and you are ready to register please see all of the details below. If you still have more questions please do not hesitate to email us at info@cadencevancouver.com


Every Tuesday starting January 7th to March 24th (12 sessions)

NO drop – ins allowed


60 min workouts. 6:45pm to 7:45pm (sharp, no latecomers)


$350+ gst

*If you need to miss a workout, you can cancel online 12hrs ahead of time and your class will be credited towards any other Cadence class – up to a maximum of 3


Cadence Cycling Studio: 106-1529 West 6th Ave

*Please note: There is only one shower and a small change room so it is best to come prepared to ride and not plan for a business dinner right afterwards

The highlights

On the first day, you will become familiar with the bikes, learn how to pair them with your own device (not required) and complete a test to set your Functional Threshold Power (FTP). You will then learn how to calculate zones from this number, which will be used for every workout. On the last day, you will again complete a FTP test. This will not only be a measurement of progress, but also an important value to have going into our regular outdoor cycling program. If you are unable to make the first session, please let us know - we will run a FTP/Fitness Testing class a few weeks before the workshop.


1 – All new Cadence participants will need to create an account (if you have an existing Cadence account skip to step 2). https://www.cadencevancouver.com/new-to-cadence. Complete all steps.

2 – If starting from this step because you already have a Cadence account CLICK HERE

3 – Click ANY “Buy Now” button and login using your customer information created on step 1 unless you already had a Cadence account.

4 – Click on the “Online Store” on choose Cadence X Kits Energy 12 Week Power Program and follow the prompts to make your purchase and register.

In the event that you cannot make a ride please go online and cancel your class with a minimum of 12 hours notice. A credit will be added to your account for future use in any other Cadence class. You may do this up to 3 times over the duration of the 12 week program.