Does Music Make You Exercise Harder?

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For a study published last year, British researchers asked 12 healthy male college students to ride stationary bicycles while listening to music that, as the researchers primly wrote, “reflected current popular taste among the undergraduate population.” Each of the six songs chosen differed somewhat in tempo from the others.

During one session, the six songs ran at their normal tempos. In other sessions, the tempo was slowed by 10 percent or increased by 10 percent. Their activity changed significantly in response.

When the tempo was slowed, their pedaling diminished in rate, their heart rates fell, and their mileage dropped. When the tempo was increased, they produced more power with each pedal stroke and increased their pedaling rate, and their heart rates rose.

The New York Times reports:

“The interplay of exercise and music is fascinating and not fully understood, perhaps in part because, as a science, it edges into multiple disciplines, from physiology to biomechanics to neurology.

No one doubts that people respond to music during exercise … Just how music impacts the body during exercise, however, is only slowly being teased out by scientists.”

You may click to see : Does Music Help Exercise Endurance

New York Times August 25, 2010
Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports August 2010; 20(4):662-9
LifeHacker August 30 2010

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