Are you looking for the extra edge when working out? Ditch the pre-workout that gives you a rash and try putting on your favourite tunes for an energy boost. While music is known to make your foot tap and hips wiggle, scientist have discovered that listening to music while exercising actually rewires your brain, decreasing your focus but elevating your enjoyment.
The study was conducted by researchers from Brunel University, who monitored the effects on brain activity while exercising with music, a podcast, and no noise. By strapping portable monitoring devices (called electroencephalograms in case you were wondering) to the study participants, scientists were able to identify a 28 per cent rise in enjoyment while listening to music.
“The EEG technology facilitated measurement during an ecologically-valid outdoor task, so we could finally explore the brain mechanisms that underlie the effects of music during real-life exercise situations,” said psychologist Marcelo Bigliassi. According to Bigliassi and the team behind the research, music boosts beta frequencies in the frontal and central regions of the cortex.
We showed that music has the potential to increase beta waves and elicit a more positive emotional state,” said Bigliassi. “This can be capitalised upon during other forms of exercise and render a given activity more pleasurable. People who struggle to engage in physical activity programmes should select appropriate pieces of music to exercise,” he said.
Still struggling for motivation? Take a leaf out of MH favourite Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s handbook and get moving to these tracks.