Theme Ride Thursday: From Rio to New Orleans, Bringing the Carnival/Mardi Gras Magic to Your Indoor Cycling Class!

Get ready to pedal into a world of festive vibes with our Carnival and Mardi Gras playlist!

Carnival and Mardi Gras are not just celebrations; they’re experiences filled with vibrant colors, infectious music, and a sense of jubilation that transcends borders. The term “Mardi Gras” is French for “Fat Tuesday,” referring to the tradition of indulging in rich, fatty foods before the solemn season of Lent begins. This day, also known as Shrove Tuesday in many English-speaking countries, marks the culmination of the Carnival season with extravagant parades, masquerade balls, and feasting. From the samba-filled streets of Rio de Janeiro to the soulful beats of New Orleans, and the rhythmic reggae tunes of Jamaica, Carnival and Mardi Gras have become iconic celebrations around the globe.

In Rio de Janeiro, Carnival is a spectacle of grandeur, with elaborate floats, extravagant costumes, and pulsating samba rhythms that sweep locals and visitors alike into a whirlwind of excitement. Meanwhile, in the heart of the United States, New Orleans transforms into a melting pot of cultures during Mardi Gras, where lively parades, traditional jazz bands, and a sea of colorful beads create an unforgettable atmosphere of revelry.

The spirit of Carnival and Mardi Gras doesn’t stop there. Across the Caribbean, countries like Jamaica embrace their own versions of the celebration, infusing reggae music and laid-back island vibes into the festivities. It’s a time when communities come together to indulge in music, dance, and the spirit of togetherness.

Now, imagine bringing this energy into your indoor cycling classes! With our handpicked bucket playlist of 100 fun song suggestions, you can transport your riders to the heart of Carnival and Mardi Gras celebrations from around the world. Whether you choose to focus on the infectious rhythms of Rio de Janeiro, the soulful melodies of New Orleans, or the laid-back grooves of Jamaica, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

So, grab your beads, put on your most colorful attire, and get ready to pedal your way through a Carnival and Mardi Gras experience like no other. 

If you put on a Carnival Ride, please share some photos! We’d love to see how you and your riders bring the spirit of Carnival and Mardi Gras to life in your studio. And as always, if you have more fun Mardi Gras/Carnival songs that are perfect for a cycling class, please share them in the comments below. It’s time to let loose, have fun, and embrace the spirit of Carnival and Mardi Gras in your indoor cycling studio! 🚴‍♂️💃🎶.

NOTE 2024: Buckwheat Zydeco Jr., son of the famous Buckwheat Zydeco, whose accordion playing is featured in many a Carnival celebration, is keeping his father’s legacy alive. The younger Buckwheat was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Regional Roots Album; this song is featured in Julianne’s Grammy Nominations 2024 profile!

We’d love to hear your comments after you’ve had a chance to teach either of these profiles. Let us know how your students appreciated the ride, too. Also, please share your song suggestions in the comments below.


  1. where do you ride? I have a bicycle , but no sidewalks in my area
    and I’m afraid to ride by myself. I wish Louisiana had the bike trails like Arkansas has, where you can ride for miles, no traffic.

  2. Have one, but this is inspiration for more diversity and another set.Thanks!

  3. Awesome list. Definitely going to put something together and do a Mardi Gras ride next week.

    1. Author

      awesome! Let us know how it goes. If you do costumes or beads, take pics and send them!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *