The Physical Benefits
There is a wealth of evidence that shows the positive influences music has on our mental and emotional states. In this third and final post on the wonderful benefits of music, we’ll look at how it affects us on a physical level.
Music Enhances Exercise
In 1911, a researcher named Leonard Ayres discovered that when bicyclists listened to music, they pedaled faster than they did when they heard only silence. It has since been determined that music has the ability to drown out that inner voice that tells us we’re tired, which can let us work out longer and at higher intensities.
Furthermore, listening to music while exercising can help the body use energy in a more efficient manner. A study conducted in 2012 revealed that bicyclists who listened to music required seven percent less oxygen to do the same amount of work as when they rode in silence. Listening to upbeat music specifically can help your body find more energy.
Finally, music typically reduces muscle tension and improves body movement and coordination, which can enable us to enjoy a broader range of exercise and physical activities.
Less Pain for Music Fans
According to a recent study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing, “listening to music can reduce chronic pain from a range of painful conditions, including osteoarthritis, disc problems and rheumatoid arthritis, by up to twenty-one percent.”
Moreover, music can help minimize the sensation and distress of chronic pain and postoperative pain. It can also lower the intensity, frequency and duration of migraines and chronic headaches.
“Heart and Soul” is good for the Heart and Soul
Music is heart-healthy, according to research. Based on the musical tempo rather than the style, songs have the capacity to increase or decrease our heart rates. When Italian and British researchers played lively music to young men and women, the participants had higher heart and breathing rates. When they listened to slower, more relaxing music, their heart and breathing rates dropped to mimic the tempo. During random two-minute pauses, the heart and breathing rates of the participants returned to normal.
In addition, The American Society of Hypertension claims that “listening to just thirty minutes of classical, Celtic or raga music every day may significantly reduce high blood pressure”.
Make Music Part of Your Life
Music can help make you physically, mentally, and emotionally healthier. It can increase your concentration, memory recall, productivity, happiness, learning ability, and exercise performance. From babies to seniors, the benefits of listening to or playing music on a routine basis are numerous. It’s not too early or too late to learn how to play an instrument or to incorporate more music into your life.