ped·​al | \ ˈpe-dᵊl How to pronounce pedal (audio) \

Definition of pedal

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a lever pressed by the foot in the playing of a musical instrument (such as an organ or piano)
2 : a foot lever or treadle by which a part is activated in a mechanism a bike's pedals



Definition of pedal (Entry 2 of 3)

1 \ ˈpe-​dᵊl How to pronounce pedal (audio) also  ˈpē-​ \ : of or relating to the foot
2 \ ˈpe-​dᵊl How to pronounce pedal (audio) \ : of, relating to, or involving a pedal


ped·​al | \ ˈpe-dᵊl How to pronounce pedal (audio) \
pedaled also pedalled; pedaling also pedalling\ ˈpe-​dᵊl-​iŋ How to pronounce pedal (audio) , ˈped-​liŋ \

Definition of pedal (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to ride a bicycle
2 : to use or work a pedal

transitive verb

: to work the pedals of

Examples of pedal in a Sentence

Verb He was pedaling as fast as he could. He pedaled down to the store.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun This flurry of bullish drivers should also help Steel Dynamics keep the pedal down on a payout that has grown by 11.5% annually on average over the past three years. Brett Owens, Forbes, 14 Nov. 2021 The Federal Reserve has been pushing the economic stimulus pedal to the metal nonstop since March 2020. Allison Morrow, CNN, 4 Nov. 2021 For some reason, the left one was really hard to unclip from the pedal. Alex Warner,, 1 Nov. 2021 Using the intuitive Spirio app, musicians can correct wrong notes, change the pedal data, and modify the note velocity and duration, as well as delete or add time. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 27 Oct. 2021 Longer rides will cost $0.05 per minute for a pedal bike and $0.10 per minute on e-bike rides. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 27 Oct. 2021 The Jaguars’ offense kept the pedal down, scoring on five of its first six possessions. Creg Stephenson |, al, 15 Oct. 2021 Smacking the go pedal brings hard and instant thrust, causing the front end to rise up dramatically as the i4 hurtles ahead. Dave Vanderwerp, Car and Driver, 12 Oct. 2021 This gives you a better, more secure connection to the pedal and allows for a more efficient transfer of energy. Sarah Madaus, SELF, 29 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective There's also a Miss Cavalcade pinup girl contest, Chop Shop demonstrations, pedal car challenge and spring car legends. Rasputin Todd,, 7 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Between the towns of Elyria and Genoa, riders pedal along the North Coast Inland Trail, a rails-to-trails project that plans to link Ohio with its eastern and western neighbors. Washington Post, 19 Nov. 2021 These stimulations can fire, say, the quad, hamstring, and glute in sequence, allowing patients who can’t otherwise control their limbs to do things like pedal a bike. Sarah Scoles, Wired, 9 Nov. 2021 At other times, cyclists, their bikes loaded with gear, gently dip a back tire into Lake Erie, then pedal away with looks of determination and excitement. Tim Warsinskey, cleveland, 14 Oct. 2021 Active guests can play croquet, borrow the hotel’s beach cruisers to pedal Southwest Harbor’s back roads or join morning yoga and Pilates sessions on the lawn. Washington Post, 10 Sep. 2021 They are equipped with a battery and motor that allow riders to pedal with less effort. Washington Post, 20 Sep. 2021 Borrow their complimentary cruiser bikes to pedal around town (the Royal BC Museum down the street has an excellent Orca exhibition). Celeste Moure, Condé Nast Traveler, 31 Aug. 2021 And yet, after these Games, at the cycling season’s end, van der Breggen will pedal off into the retirement sunset. Jason Gay, WSJ, 23 July 2021 Here, the ins and outs of daily life play out — chic women on bikes pedal their children to school, artists post up in cafés with a notebook, and both young and old line up morning and evening for a fresh baguette from the neighborhood boulangerie. Evie Carrick, Travel + Leisure, 2 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pedal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pedal


1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1618, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1883, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pedal


Middle French pedale, from Italian, from Latin pedalis, adjective


Latin pedalis, from ped-, pes

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Last Updated

22 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pedal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for pedal



English Language Learners Definition of pedal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a flat piece of metal, rubber, etc., that you push with your foot to make a machine move, work, or stop
: a lever on a piano, organ, etc., that you push with your foot to make or change a sound



English Language Learners Definition of pedal (Entry 3 of 2)

: to push the pedals of (something, such as a bicycle)
: to ride a bicycle to a particular place


ped·​al | \ ˈpe-dᵊl How to pronounce pedal (audio) \

Kids Definition of pedal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a lever worked by the foot or feet


pedaled also pedalled; pedaling also pedalling

Kids Definition of pedal (Entry 2 of 2)

: to use or work levers with a foot or feet She's learning how to pedal a bicycle.


ped·​al | \ ˈped-ᵊl also ˈpēd- \

Medical Definition of pedal

: of or relating to the foot

More from Merriam-Webster on pedal

Nglish: Translation of pedal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pedal for Arabic Speakers


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