Benefits of Working Out with Music
Have you ever taken notice of the playlist used for your workout class in the gym and just how much energy it always has? Many exercise enthusiasts are already aware of just how effective music is when applied to workout yet the actual science behind this action isn’t known by many. Athletes often have music blaring from their headphones as they exercise for a simple reason: how you feel about exercise and the benefit you receive from it is transformed by listening to music. Below, we have a look at seven of many reasons why your next gym session must be done with the music of your own.
1. Music Activates You
There’s music, and then there’s that song that gets you moving every time. There is a science associated with why a particular song gets you in the zone: with every song we listen to, we connect it to memory. It could be a scene from a movie or a date that went better than expected. In some cases, listening to a song causes you to channel that memory into your physical activities. Other times, your energy could be activated by the emotion of the singer. Their voice can act as your motivation and resultantly enhance your performance levels.
When it comes to emotions, listening to music as you work out helps regulate the activation of certain emotions instead of others, and this has been related directly to the tempo of the music. Excitement is activated when we listen to a fast pace or powerful intensity song, while music with slower speeds help us relax and calm down. Most often in a competition or training session, you’re likely to come across athletes listening to songs that assist in the calming of their nerves or even to pump up their energy levels; that’s how great music is.
2. You Become One With The Beat
Music can control your movements by stimulating certain parts of your brain. Your body thus can move in sync with the rhythm of the music, provided it’s at the right tempo. When we listen to music, our muscles are assisted in a continuous movement which also helps in efficient movement. Your health and life expectancy can significantly increase with music; as efficient movement enables you to maximise your workout sessions. Some benefits of upbeat music are to reduce your blood pressure levels and all feelings of fatigue, to increase your metabolic rate and energy efficiency, to reduce both mental and physical stress, and to increase the rate at which your heart operates.
To move efficiently with the beat music provides, the type of music is critical. Songs may have the same tempo but will affect your physical activity differently by offering different outcomes. For example, music that has a reggae or jazz tune may produce lower physical output than music related to ‘pop-techno’, even if both songs have the same beat per minute (BPM) or tempo.
The ideal range of BPM by many experts is placed at 120-140 and its believed that this range will have a positive effect on your workout. Anything that is too fast or above this range will not benefit you in any way.
3. Music Increases Your Speed
Pick up your pace with music in your ears. If you’re looking for something to help you pick up your pace during your cardio workout, bike ride or neighborhood walk, you should listen to a collection of upbeat songs. Researchers say that our bodies move faster to more energetic music even if your movement doesn’t match the beat correctly.
As you exercise, there are two kinds of music you can listen to. There is synchronous music, where the speed and movement offered for an activity match the rhythm of the music. The other kind is asynchronous music, where the rhythm of the music and the exercises you’re doing have no correspondence. For a workout, listening to synchronous music is more suitable than asynchronous music as it ensures greater output and higher performance when used together with the movement from any sporting activity.
Our brain has a motor area that is stimulated by the rhythm of our workout music, telling us when to move thereby helping us keep the pace during exercises such as weight-lifting or running. Pacing during a workout helps us use energy more efficiently and is also easier on our bodies as opposed to fluctuating throughout our various sessions.
4. Music makes exercise feel easy!
No matter how much you dread getting up to work out, your playlist can get you excited and move! Your brain recognizes how difficult an exercise feels whenever you start a workout, and this is a concept known as the ‘perceived rate of exertion’. This concept means your brain translates workouts such as taking a walk as an exercise of low-impact, whereas exercises such as sprinting are perceived to be difficult.
With music playing in the background, sprinting or the lifting of weights will feel easier, even as you push yourself harder to complete those extra reps. There is a theory stating that there’s a limit to the amount of attention your brain can offer things, thus with your mind having to focus on the rhythm of your playlist, there is only so much attention left to devote to how grueling an exercise feels.
5. Music helps increase performance
Aside from the fact that music offers a welcome distraction, it’s also known to make people less aware of their exertion. This, according to many researchers has provided a 15% increase in the performance of athletes during training or competitions. Music is better and works fast thus if you want to keep your mind off that burning stitch, update your playlist with some upbeat tunes.
Thomas Fritz introduced ‘jymming’, which was coined from the combination of ‘gym’ and ‘jammin’. This involves the use of machines that use music to help people push their personal limits of bodily exhaustion. This concept was created to prove that not only can you listen to music as you work out, but you can create music by working out.
Just try to stand still when Justin Timberlake is playing. Those who have researched into the relationship between music and exercise have found out that, the need for opiate drugs to alleviate or cure pain is drastically reduced when people listen to music. While music isn’t a substitute for managing chronic pain or for medication, listening to it during your workout can distract you from the aches and pains you usually encounter. This means that your ability to push harder and complete those deadlifts is increased thanks to music.
6. Music Generally Improves Your Mood
Music makes us feel really good, we all know that, but what we might not be aware of is that music helps us think deeply about who we see ourselves becoming, who we are at the moment and what we can do to get to where we want to be. With music, all negative thoughts are shut out, and we receive new, positive vibes that put us in a great and cheerful mood. The perfect formula for an intense and beneficial workout is having a positive mindset; you know you’ll feel great after that workout when you escape all forms of negativity and power through those heart-pumping exercises.
Aside all the points listed, listening to music in a communal workout space such as a gym can lighten the atmosphere and encourage socialization. Imagine the whole gym singing along to “Fireworks” by Katie Perry. You may start to feel tired until the person beside you starts singing out the words and so you think, okay, I can’t stop now. Suddenly, there’s no limit to what you can’t do, and you keep going on and on and on.
7. Workout Music is Therapeutic
When doing yoga or Pilates, listening to mellow music helps in the clearing of your mind, relaxing you such that you can give your full attention to all muscle contractions and postures you have to do. With a slower-paced tune on replay, you can escape from the present, think deeply and have an active medication. Music is like magic; it helps us connect with our emotions on a higher level and also cope with any pains we’re going through be it physical, emotional, or mental. Name your favorite artist from the happiest time of your life and see yourself light up when their song comes up in your ears.
The right music goes a long way to make any workout exciting. Nonetheless, it is equally essential to choose the perfect nutrition to accompany any exercise you perform. Whereas music nourishes and relaxes your mind, food replenishes your body with the supply of all essential nutrients needed to repair tissues and build muscle, leaving you more fit for the next time you exercise. Feel great and achieve optimal results when you pair nutrition and workout with the perfect exercise playlist. Music may be playing your song for better health.
- Psychophysiological effects of synchronous versus asynchronous music during cycling – NCBI
- 8 Surprising Ways Music Affects and Benefits Our Brains – Huffington
- Why Music, Part 2A — Music and the Brain: Active Listening – Huffpost
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