Most fitness fans love to listen as they lift or run, but does it actually make any positive difference? With the purpose of discovering how effective preferred music is on running compared with non-preferred tunes, the journal Perceptual and Motor Skills found that the former “had a larger effect on the endurance running performance of women than men.”
But, are there any other reasons why pumping up the jams can make us work harder? According to countless studies conducted over the past 10 years or so, there is. Crank the playlist to do better, ladies.
You want to move more
You’ve been there, your jam starts playing in the office and you have to resist the urge to jump on the table and start dancing – or is that just us?
Listening to high tempo music, especially fast songs with a strong beat, causes a rhythmic response, which makes your body to want to move. This can be especially effective if you are dreading a workout as putting on your favorite workout tracks is guaranteed to get you moving, even if your body doesn’t want to.
Makes you happier
We all have our feel-good song that we listen to when we’re feeling down. Recent studies, however, suggest that listening to music that you love increases electrical activity in the brain, especially regions that are essential for coordinating movements.
It also allows you to be more present in the moment and when it comes to your workout, rocking out to your fave tunes can help you escape whatever is consuming your brain and make you more focused.
Helps keep your pace
Depending on the rhythm of your workout music, it could aid with self-paced exercises such as running and weight-lifting. Some physiologists have implied that we have a preference for music with two beats per second or 120 beats per minute (bpm). Think Michael Jackson’s Thriller or Just Dance by Lady Gaga.
Studies also suggest that when we hop on the treadmill, we favor 160 bpm – Shake It Off by Tay Tay should do the trick.
Speeds up recovery
The rhythm of a song does more than get you pumped, it can also aid your recovery. Music with a simple harmonic and melodic structure and a tempo between 60 and 90bpm helps to reduce your heart rate and relax you.
Try Cheap Thrills by Sia or Scar Tissue by Red Hot Chili Peppers post-workout to start the healing process on your body.
A good type of distraction
You’ve heard the phrase ‘the mind will give up way before the body does’, well apparently, there is truth to this common #fitspo quote. When you put on your headphones, you stop your mind from giving up because it’s distracted which makes you less aware of how much energy you’re putting in.
What you also manage to do is stop your brain from quitting when physical fatigue begins to set in. Music competes against this physiological feedback and distracts you from giving up.
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