Side Pattern

Why Music Makes all the Difference

Have you ever gone running with no headphones, or tried to
workout in a quiet gym? How’d you do? Did you make it through the entire
workout or did you find yourself feeling a bit off and lackadaisical?
For many the latter would have been the case. The cause? No music!!
There is a real reason behind blasting your favorite songs over your
headphones or speakers while you build your body. And, actually, it’s
been studied in over 100 different studies on music and physical

So why do we perform better when we have our tunes pushing
us along? Studies have shown that we have an instinctual response to try
and match the rhythm and beat of the music we are listening to. So if
we are pedaling a bike and the music we are listening to is faster and
more intense, studies suggest we will pedal faster to match the music.
The opposite is also true and we will typically pedal slower if the
music is slow or if there is no music at all. Additionally moving to the
beat may actually help you perform at maximum levels more efficiently.
For example a 2012 study at Sheffield Hallam University, showed that
participants who cycled on rhythm to music used 7% percent less oxygen
to do the same work as those who did not. So not only does your music
amp you up, it actually produces a more effective workout!

Another reason we tend to have better workouts with music is
the distraction music provides for us. We are constantly aware of what
we are doing as we go about our day. The body monitors and makes
adjustments based on these perceptions. So when music is not
incorporated we spend our time in the gym or on the track thinking about
the pain we are enduring, the burning in our muscles, and the tired
state of our body. Now with the introduction of music we can actually
fight the body’s natural response to stop or take a break. By focusing
on the music we can help block out the negative signals the brain wishes
to send to us. Additionally, the brain will often link certain songs
and music to emotions, allowing us to find some music motivational,
which encourages us to push harder and further.

One very important factor of music is its effect on an
individual’s mood. How many of us can say that there have been times
when music has helped us blast out of a funk or bad mood? Music can help
us change our mindset, block out the bad, and move forward even if only
for a little bit. So next time you just aren’t feeling like working
out, or thinking of skipping, why not crank the most upbeat music you
like and see if that doesn’t help you bust through. A pair of headphones
and a music player should be standard equipment for all exercisers as
far as we’re concerned! Now grab your phone, your headphones, and get