Figure 8 Profile Playlist

31 May

I can’t take the credit for this profile, but I can tell you, it’s fun AND challenging.  I know, because I just went through it on the Spin bike in my basement!  This one is called ‘Fun Figure 8’s’ and was shared over on the Profiles board  at Pedal -On by member Dave.  I didn’t really adapt it much, so if you want to see Dave’s PDF, head on over to Pedal On and check it out! 🙂

Basically, I’ve created a visual for my students using post-it notes with the 8 moves involved in the profile.  Here’s a shot of my note card that I’ll use on the bike.  (The visual for my students is much bigger.):




See how it looks like a figure 8 if you follow the numbers?  It took me a minute to see it so take your time. 😉  And by the way, as a kindergarten teacher, it goes against everything I teach my students to make an eight this way.  We always start our letters and numbers at the top.  But for this profile, starting in the middle is the only way to go.

Here are the 8 movements:

1. Flat road:  This is an easy flat road.  Once we get into the profile, this will be a nice little recovery.

2. Fast flat road

3. Standing flat, or as some call it, a standing run

4. Aggressive: This just means add some more resistence and work a little harder :).

5. Flat road

6. Seated climb

7. Jumps on a hill

8. Standing climb

Here’s the fun part:  Go through the entire sequence 4 times.  The first time, each movement is 3:00; the second time-2:00; third time 1:00 and the last time 30 seconds.  Also, the jumps are 16 ct, 12 ct, 8ct and then 4 ct as you go through the sequence.

I’m kind of stuck on pedaling to the beat on standing flats and climbs, so I had to come up with tunes that were appropriate for the rpm’s and movements.  I think this playlist works well for an hour class.  If you don’t mind pedaling to a steady beat throughout the profile, you could definitely go for longer songs with a steady beat. I hope you have fun with this one if you decide to give it a try!

Screen Shot 2013-05-30 at 8.10.04 PM


**Post Edit: You can check out the original playlist that I used in the screen shot above. I have since updated the playlist with new tunes. Both playlists worked great with the profile!


49 Responses to “Figure 8 Profile Playlist”

  1. GeminiGirl May 31, 2013 at 2:58 pm #

    This is a fun profile – thanks for sharing and explaining so well! One question – what position are you in during the “Aggressive” interval and due you recommend a steady pace during this interval or do you add surges? Thanks!

    • Chris May 31, 2013 at 7:48 pm #

      During the aggressive interval I’m standing at hand position 3. 🙂 Let me know how it goes if you try it!

      • ellarcher June 1, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

        Great profile. I am going to give it a try. I worry that I am going to get neurotic with making a playlist that fits the rpm of the movements. I need to put my own music stamp on it!

      • chrispins June 2, 2013 at 7:34 pm #

        It was a fun and challenging profile. I agree, I’m kind of a perfectionist when it comes to the music I use, so matching the RPM’s, timing and picking music that I liked took some time. Please share your playlist when you finish! 🙂

  2. Casey June 9, 2013 at 1:44 am #

    This is a fantastic profile!! Thank you for sharing, my members LOVED it!!!

    • chrispins June 9, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

      You’re welcome Casey! My members loved it too! Thanks for commenting!

  3. Lisa June 10, 2013 at 11:22 pm #

    Hey Chris – I want to try this tonight. So I get the timing right (might as well leverage all your work to match the RPMs!), when do you start? Is the #1 first Flat, the very first song/warm up? Or is there a warm up to the first song or so and then you start the timing? Thanks for letting me know!

    • Chris June 10, 2013 at 11:36 pm #

      Hi Lisa, The first song (Locked Out of Heaven) is 3:45, so I just added that extra 45 seconds into the first flat (#1), so you can start timing after the first 45 seconds. 🙂 Have fun! I just taught it again tonight with a new playlist. They loved it! Let me know how it goes!

      • Debbie Simon November 6, 2013 at 1:14 pm #

        I’m going to try this tonight. Looks fun and creative. Thanks for posting. Glad I found your blog and now I follow you on Spotify 🙂

  4. jaci November 27, 2013 at 9:01 pm #

    Great profile! I am excited to try this figure 8 ride. Question… How did you describe this ride to the class? I always like to give them an overview of what kind of ride we will be doing, but I hate sounding too wordy. I hope I get better at that.
    Your blog is very helpful! thanks!!

    • chrispins November 28, 2013 at 11:50 am #

      Thank you Jaci1 I created a large visual (almost identical to the small on pictured), and I briefly described the ride to my students by showing them each part of the figure 8. I kept the visual in view for them during the ride, which they really like. As we rode, I would let them know which part of the 8 we were working on and always prepared them ahead of time for what was coming next. It keeps them on track and motivated, even with the visual there. I hope that helps!

  5. Ellette December 4, 2013 at 10:06 pm #

    Just found your blog and tried this ride! Loved it and so did my class. Your choice of music was spot on. Thank you so much for sharing, I know how time consuming it is to put these together. Looking forward to trying your “Everybody Loves Me” ride.

    • chrispins December 4, 2013 at 10:48 pm #

      I’m so glad you and your class enjoyed the ride! I hope you like ‘Everybody Loves Me’ as well. 🙂

  6. Marlyn January 1, 2014 at 7:30 pm #

    Love the idea but could you explain what you mean when you suggest go through the sequence 4 times. first time 3;00, then 2nd time 2:00 etc. Isnt each movement done for the entire song? Example !. Fast Flat is done through out song #2 LOVE? How times hen could you change the times on each consecutive sequence.

    • chrispins January 1, 2014 at 10:29 pm #

      No, the sequences are continuous. We work right through the end of each song and into the next. To find songs that were exactly 3:00/2:00/1:00 in length would have been a difficult endeavor and would not make for a smooth ride, in my opinion. I hope that makes sense. 🙂

      • Marlyn January 3, 2014 at 8:37 pm #

        Now I see. I thought you were doing each movement by song, Now it makes total sense,.Im going to give it a try my next class.

        thnx so much

  7. jesika January 16, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    hi new to spin ……got certified with Keiser but have not taught a class yet and researching how to setup…….was wondering if you have time if u can tell me how spotify or any other app anyone used to play their music? Does it play it continuously ? Do you have to pay for no commercials? Thanks for any info.

    • chrispins January 16, 2014 at 10:25 pm #

      Hi there! I currently used Spotify and I have used iTunes previously. In Spotify, you can create continuous-play playlists just like in iTunes. In order to use Spotify in class, you need a device that has a wireless connection in order to sync your playlists. Once your playlist is synced, you can take it offline (meaning you don’t need an internet connection to play it). In order to have this feature (as well as ad free), you will need to the premium ($9.99/mo) subscription. It is worth the monthly fee, for sure. I am spending much less on music than when I was using iTunes. I hope that helps!

  8. jesika January 16, 2014 at 11:18 pm #

    thank you Chris but one more question I was searching and somewhere it said it plays ad or commercials every 20 mins on spotify it that true? thank you again

    • chrispins January 17, 2014 at 1:05 am #

      I don’t know how frequent the ads are with the free membership, but there are NO ADS with Premium membership, which is what you would want if you are using it in your classes.

  9. jesika January 17, 2014 at 3:30 am #

    Thank you so much for clarifying that for me.

  10. Linda January 27, 2014 at 9:45 pm #

    Hey Chris, I’ve just discovered your blog and am LOVING it! Just like the many comments before mine about the Figure 8 profile, I’m excited to try this with my members tomorrow. One question: after the “aggressive” (#4) we go back to a flat road (#5). Because this is after some gear has been added do you suggest reducing any resistance or is it a prep for the next climbing positions (like an “approach road”)?

    • chrispins January 28, 2014 at 1:42 am #

      Hi Linda! Thank you and I’m so glad you found my blog! I actually just revisited this profile tonight, so it’s nice and fresh in my mind. If you are using my Spotify playlist, you might notice that I updated it with new songs. I used the #5 (flat road) as an easy flat road, and as we progressed through the profile, it actually became part recovery/part flat. In the final (30 second) round, we used it as a 30 second recovery. I told my riders to use as much of it as they needed to recover but to work through as much of it as they could. It was also nice to be able to get them to push a little harder on the ‘aggressive’, when they knew they could get a little recovery when it was done. I hope that makes sense! 🙂 Thanks for commenting.

  11. Kelcey February 3, 2014 at 7:06 pm #

    Hi Chris. I will give the figure 8 profile a spin tomorrow morning. I will be adding my personal hip hop touch to the playlist. I’ll definitely let you know how it goes.

    • chrispins February 3, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

      Great! I would love to see the playlist if you don’t mind sharing!

  12. Kristin February 21, 2014 at 1:30 am #

    I am an indoor cycle instructor and I pride myself on never teaching the same class twice over a 3 month period. This takes a lot of work. I taught this profile three times this week (at 3 different gyms) and they all said it was their favorite ride yet! I did not do the exact music but maybe half of the songs were from your list. Thank you for a great profile that I will surely be repeating before the end of the quarter!!

    • chrispins February 21, 2014 at 1:46 am #

      Glad you liked it! This is definitely the most popular profile I teach. 🙂 Thank you for commenting!

  13. Vickie Pinion April 1, 2014 at 6:56 pm #

    Hi Chris, I have been following you for several months, and man you have made a difference in teaching!! last night I taught Figure 8, and they loved it!!! thank you, you are truly an inspiration!!

    • chrispins April 1, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

      Thanks Vickie! I’m happy you’ve found inspiration here! 🙂

  14. Sarah April 2, 2014 at 3:45 pm #

    Trying this with my class tomorrow! For the new play list when do you start the first round?

    • chrispins April 2, 2014 at 8:27 pm #

      Hi Sarah! Can’t go wrong with this one! I hope your class loves it! The first two songs are warm up, so the profile starts at song #3.

  15. Christine Foster April 19, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

    Hi Chris, your blog and playlists are the greatest! I just love your musical taste. Thank you so much for sharing. I’m really grateful.

    • chrispins April 19, 2014 at 10:20 pm #

      You’re welcome Christine! Thank you for commenting! 🙂

  16. Sherri July 20, 2014 at 2:44 am #

    If I teach 45 minute classes, how do you recommend I adjust the timing? Skip the 2 minute set? Thanks so much?

    • chrispins July 21, 2014 at 1:45 pm #

      Hi Sherri,

      You could either skip the 2 minute set or you could shorten the time in the rest of the sets- either way you have to play with the music a bit. Would love to see what you come up with!

      • Sherri July 22, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

        Ok great! Recovery is only at #5 so I can shorten those a bit. Might have to also remove the 2 min set. I’ll play with it and let you know.

  17. Sherri July 25, 2014 at 12:48 am #

    Profile was a big success tonight. I skipped the 2 minute set and the timing was perfect for 45 min class. The 30 second set was challenging for sure, fast moving. They loved it, thank you Chris!

    • chrispins July 25, 2014 at 1:33 am #

      That’s awesome! I have to do a 45 minute class tomorrow, so I changed it from a ‘figure 8’ to a ‘figure 5’ and completely revamped my playlist. I’ll most likely post it later-if it isn’t a complete disaster!

      • Sherri July 25, 2014 at 2:24 am #

        Oh cool! I’d love to see that! I don’t use spotify or I’d be happy to share my playlist. Not sure how to do that with iTunes.

  18. Mila Levine April 12, 2015 at 3:15 pm #

    Just used Figure 8 today! I used “Here is to Us” playlist.. Loved the music and the class love it! So much fun! Thank you!!!

    • chrispins April 12, 2015 at 4:26 pm #

      Great! Glad you liked it!! 🙂

  19. Marina September 28, 2015 at 8:14 pm #

    Hi Chris, Love your blog and music! Just wondering what timer do you like to use?

    • chrispins September 28, 2015 at 11:59 pm #

      Hi there! I’m old school-I use a stopwatch timer from Walmart and I time each song individually. 🙂

      • Megan December 13, 2015 at 2:05 am #

        Hi Chris! I used this playlist in class today and everyone loved it. I copied the profile to a poster and hung it, they loved the change of pace and the music worked perfectly. Thank you!!

      • chrispins January 2, 2016 at 8:34 pm #

        That’s great Megan! Thanks so much!

      • Marina February 18, 2016 at 10:04 pm #

        Thank you!


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