Does Bike Riding Count As Steps? (Let’s Find Out)

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Are you unhappy that your fitness apps don’t count your effort in cycling as steps? Maybe, you want to compete with friends who hit the golden 10,000 steps a time but can’t do that while cycling.

Unfortunately, this issue results in the burden of seeking out company fitness apps that can convert your bike riding efforts into steps.

This article will help with all you need to know about counting cycling as steps taken.

Generally, bike riding doesn’t count as steps because your hands are stationary while cycling, as opposed to while walking. Therefore, your steps can count only when you’re walking with your hands swinging alongside your average feet stride. However, some company fitness apps come with barometers that can detect your cadence while cycling with the app in your pocket.

Does Bike Riding Count As Steps On Apple Watch?

Bike Riding Count As Steps On Apple Watch

Unfortunately, the Apple fitness app cannot help you count steps with every roll of a wheel while cycling.

Even though this is a known need, the Apple watch series cannot include steps for cycling in its features.

So it would still be impossible to count steps while cycling with the Apple watch around your ankles.

Notwithstanding, the Apple watch’s features can include outdoor activities such as cycling and its events.

It gets to measure the amount of kcal you burn while cycling and the distance you cover.

However, this idea requires that you manually select cycling and have your watch calculate the number of kcal you burn.

If your aim is achieving the 10,000 golden steps, then having your kcal burn record alone while cycling won’t do. You would cycle all day and still feel you’ve achieved nothing.

So, the solution would be that you get to manually calculate the number of steps per minute or hour of cycling.

Among the newest Apple watch series is a brand, Watch OS 8, which comes with some advanced cycling features:

  • It reminds you to keep up with your cycling schedules.
  • It detects when you start cycling and records your kcal burn per hour and distance covered.
  • Depending on your response, it automatically regulates itself to start or stop temporarily.
  • It can detect cycling when you’re on an e-bike.
  • It senses cycling-related falls from falls due to other causes.

With these in mind, resist the urge to strap your ankle with the Apple watch to count steps while cycling.

Moreover, the Apple watch series has strictness to only function on the wrist and not otherwise.

Either way, it still wouldn’t count steps while you’re cycling but focuses on helping to lose weight and preventing obesity.

Does Riding a Bike Count As Steps On iPhone?

Yes, your iPhone can count steps while you’re riding a bike. This is because your iPhone is designed to detect movements and count them as steps taken.

In addition, your iPhone can count these steps regardless of its position, even if it is in your backpack.

Your iPhone has a barometer that helps to detect movement, so as long as you’re moving, even while cycling, it counts steps.

So, with the iPhone in your pocket, while riding a bike, it would detect your cadence and calculate your steps.

Does Cycling Count As Steps On Garmin?

Garmin doesn’t count steps while you’re cycling. It only counts steps when your arms are swinging with the average stride length.

When riding a bike, you’re not making enough movements that this fitness app can detect and make out steps.

Unfortunately, most smartwatches neither count cycling time nor convert cycling to steps, and Garmin isn’t an exception.

However, fixing it on your ankle can help it calculate your footstep length and feet stride length.

This is because Garmin realizes that the average feet cycled is a product of your feet ‘average stride. This fact makes it somewhat unique compared to the other company fitness apps.

How Far are 10000 Steps On a Bike?

Ten thousand steps are equivalent to 16 bike miles while riding at moderate intensity. So, for every bike mile, you must take 605 steps.

However, several factors can influence the distance you can cover with 10000 steps while cycling. These include;

#1. Bike Types

While cycling on an e-bike, you can cover longer distances faster than a regular bike.

In essence, you’d cover 10000 steps while on a bike in less than 16 miles in a shorter period. Hence, e-bikes make better exercise bikes than regular bikes.

#2. Speed

The speed and intensity you ride with determine the distance you can cover per 10000 steps while cycling.

A higher intensity speed will get you a shorter distance, while a lower intensity speed will achieve a longer distance.

On average, I’d advise that you ride at moderate intensity, and at that intensity, you’ll attain 16 miles over 10000 steps while cycling.

#3. Terrain

The average of 16 miles covered with 10000 steps while cycling is attainable when moving on flat, smooth ground.

Cycling uphill is more energy expending and takes longer to reach the 16 miles. In contrast, it becomes faster and easier when you cycle downhill.

#4. Body Size

Your body weight also affects how far you get with 10000 steps on a bike. Ten thousand steps a day is ideal for maintaining a balance between food intake and output for healthy living.

So, converting cycling to steps is necessary to meet the 10000 step rule for optimal living.

However, these factors can differ between individuals depending on preferences and endurance levels.

How Do You Convert Cycling To Steps?

Convert Cycling To Steps

A general rule of converting cycling to steps is by following the conversion factors, which require some sort of calculation.

These conversion factors split based on their level of intensities in 1 minute, the so-called intensity minute.

Now, I’ll go over the conversion factors and how the various intensities differ from one another;

#1. Low-Intensity Conversion

You will know you’re riding your bike at a low intensity when you can maintain a conversation without stress while cycling.

However, at low intensity, 1 minute of cycling will yield 85 steps, giving 10000 steps in 118 minutes (2hours).

#2. Moderate Intensity Conversion

Talking can still flow when cycling with moderate intensity, but a little breathing difficulty may set in.

At this pace, 1 minute of cycling will yield 150 steps. With this, you’d attain 10000 steps in an hour; hence, this intensity is ideal for cycling.

#3. High-Intensity Conversion

At high intensity, you would be able to speak because, at this point, you just want to get it over with. Here, in 1 minute, you get to cover 200 steps, so in 10 minutes, less than an hour, you’ll get 10000 steps.

#4. Hard Intensity Conversion

At this point, you reach your maximum limit of endurance with nothing but pain ruling over your mind. You can cover 265 steps with a minute of cycling under this pressure.

So, you’ll exhaust 10000 steps in just 38 minutes.

Therefore, while riding a bike to count steps, ensure that you go at a pace that you can withstand. This process will keep you focused and count your steps afterward.

As a general thumb rule, moderate cycling intensity in 1 hour is ideal for yielding the golden 10000 steps.


Exercising, especially cycling, is never easy, whether you’re doing it to keep fit, prevent obesity, or lose weight.

Therefore, you’d want to see the evidence of the pounds you’re losing in the form of steps with every effort.

This reason broods the idea of seeking a fitness app that’d perfectly count steps while you’re out cycling. So far, your apple phone or a Garmin strapped to your ankle will do the trick.