How does music affect people doing sports?
Many people want to lose excess weight. Those affected often try to do this through diet and exercise. The problem with this is that most people don't really feel like doing sports. The question arises how we can achieve that we train more motivated and generally just have more fun in sport. The solution is simple: Researchers have now found that listening to music during training not only increases focus on the task at hand, but also makes training much more enjoyable.
In their research, Brunel University London scientists found that listening to music while exercising improves focus and encourages exercise. The doctors published the results of their study in the English-language journal "Psychology of Sport and Exercise".
What effects does music have on people?
During the investigation, the experts used electroencephalography (EEG) to monitor the brain's response to music while the participants were physically active. It's no secret that music has the ability to elicit emotional responses, doctors say. Music can make us happy, sad and angry, or motivate us. The latter is one of the reasons why many of us listen to music while jogging. But how exactly does the brain react to music when we exercise? Study author Marcelo Bigliassi and his colleagues wanted to answer this question through their investigation.
How does music affect the brain in sports?
So far, little has been researched into the mechanisms in the brain that underlie the psychological effects of auditory stimuli during physical activity, say the scientists. The experts wanted to assess how music or a podcast affected the brain during exercise compared to no acoustic stimuli. EEG technology made it easier to measure during an outdoor exercise, so researchers could investigate the mechanisms of the brain that underlie the effects of music in real exercise situations.
Subjects had to walk a 400 meter distance
A total of 24 study participants moved 400 meters on an outdoor track at a pace of their choice under one of three conditions. Some subjects did the exercise while listening to Pharrell Williams' song Happy for 6 minutes, some participants heard a podcast of a lecture, and some subjects heard nothing, the experts explain.
Subjects' brain waves were measured
During the task, the participants' brain waves were measured using an EEG. The scientists also assessed how each of the three listening conditions affected participants' attention during the assignment and how these conditions affected their alertness and fatigue.
Music increases wellbeing during physical tasks
The researchers found that listening to music resulted in a 28 percent increase in enjoyment during the task compared to no acoustic stimuli. The enjoyment was 13 percent higher for those who listened to music than those who heard a podcast. These effects were associated with an increase in beta waves in the frontal and frontal-central regions of the cerebral cortex, the team reports.
Music amplifies beta waves
The medical team found that music has the potential to amplify the beta waves and create a more positive emotional state. This can be exploited during other forms of exercise and can make a given activity more enjoyable. If people avoid exercise because they don't feel like exercising, listening to music can offer a way to make this condition more comfortable, the experts explain. (as)