7 Crazy Effects Music Can Have On Your Workouts

It’s best to blast those beats…

If you’re anything like us - and probably the vast majority of the regulars at your local gym, for that matter - you consider your headphones a non-negotiable essential item when packing your gym bag.

It’s common knowledge that a killer workout playlist can really take your exercise regimen to the next level, but why is this so? We cranked up the volume on some studies exploring music's effect on physical performance, and the results were undeniable.

Turns out, blasting your favorite tunes works wonders for your workouts far beyond simply passing the time.

Believe it or not, the performance-enhancing effects of music are so pronounced that playing it can actually be grounds for medal disqualification at many marathons and races around the country - talk about a competitive edge!

When it comes to your daily laps around the park or your date with the weights, however, there are some serious benefits to be had by pumping up the volume.

Check out these 7 incredible effects music can have on your workouts, backed by science:

7. Music Elevates Your Mood

Good music puts you in a good mood, period. And a good mood puts you in the right mindset to do, well, anything. In that case, why wait till you’re on the bench to blast those tunes? They might just be the friendly push you need to make it there in the first place...

6. Enhances Coordination

Have you ever tried dancing to no music? We don’t blame you. But you can probably imagine the trainwreck that would ensue...

That’s because studies have found that listening to music actually lights up the electrical activity in the parts of the brain involved in movement and coordination, which can help with technical aerobic activities like HIIT - eerie stuff.

5. Occupies Your Mind

Why resign to hearing the wheezing of your own lungs working hard, or feeling every single gripe and groan from your muscles when you can listen to Jay-Z calling for an ‘encore’? Sometimes distraction can be a good thing.

Just be mindful when executing a difficult move to turn down the volume and tune in with your body to prevent possible injury.

4. Keeps Pace

You’ll probably be lucky to find one person on the treadmills at your gym not sporting earbuds. That’s because it’s been shown that music is particularly impactful during repetitive endurance activities like running and cycling.

Acting much like a metronome, music elicits a “rhythm response”, tapping into people’s tendency to synchronize their movements to music matching their cadence. In other words: Feel the beat, man.

3. Induces Runner’s High

Cardio exercise and music are both known for naturally releasing all those feel-good chemicals like endorphins, dopamine and oxytocin when implemented on their own. And when you mix the two?

Sounds like a surefire recipe for that sweet runner’s high to us. The general consensus for the ideal tempo range hangs around 120 to 140 beats per minute, FYI.

2. Reduces Fatigue

You already know that music gets you amped up while keeping your mind off the aches and pains of your body building those gains (the rhyme was not intentional, I swear).

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that tuning into music can reduce the perceived fatigue, then, keeping you raring for more. Speaking of which…

1. Pushes Your Limits

Studies have found that music is remarkably effective at decreasing your perceived level of exertion, essentially tricking your mind into thinking you’re working less than you actually are.

Let’s let the numbers speak, shall we? Evidently, pumping some jams during your endurance workout can effectively boost performance in terms of pace and distance up to 15 percent.

All in all, the evidence in the case for the dynamic duo of music and exercise is overwhelming. Pump some iron or get moving to the groove of your favorite tunes, or give some of our hand-picked playlists a try! Here are 8 of the best workout playlists available to stream on Spotify to get your head in the game and take your next workout to the next level.

Maggie Johnson | MME Lifestyle Contributor

1 comment

  • My classmates and I did a research assignment while attending Lyndon State College on how music can affect your workout. This was around 2014. How music can affect your workout is nothing new!!


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