What is my Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE)?

What is my Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE)?

A rating of how hard you feel like you are exercising.

Your Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) is an individual rating on a 0-10 scale; it’s a rating of how hard you perceive you are exercising (or exerting yourself).


No effort is required. It’s like sitting in a chair doing nothing.


Exercise feels very easy.


Exercise feels comfortable. You can sing your favorite song.


Exercise feels somewhat challenging. You can carry on a brief conversation but can’t comfortably sing your favorite song. This is considered moderate intensity.


Exercise feels difficult. You need to catch your breath in order to respond to a question.
This is considered hard or vigorous intensity.


Exercise feels very difficult. Conversation is not possible.


Exercise requires an all-out, maximal effort.

Rate your perceived exertion by paying attention to your overall effort, fatigue, and breathing during exercise. The more practice you get using this scale, the more accurate it will be.

This is an individual rating and there is no right or wrong answer. Two people walking down the street together at the same pace may have different ratings.

Borg, G. (1998). Borg’s perceived exertion and pain scales. Stockholm: Human Kinetics. Perceived Exertion: Current Comments from the American College of Sports Medicine (2001)
IDEA World Fitness Convention 2007.  Session 454: Debunking Cardio Myths and Misconceptions by Fabio Comana

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