Posted: Tue, 12 Dec 2017 14:00
What effect does music have on us?
Music can influence our state of mind. Not only can it enhance our mood, it can also change our mood. It can relax, and it can energise. Music can act as a companion to whatever activity you're engaging in, from reading to exercising. If you can match the tempo of the music with the activity, it can improve your enjoyment of that activity.
How can music help running?
Music can trick your mind into feeling less tired during a workout, especially repetitive movement exercises such as running.
Research suggests that listening to music while exercising can reduce perceptions of effort and fatigue by up to 12%.
If you're listening to music while running, it can distract you from the actual effort of running – you're listening to the beat of a song, rather than the thump coming from your heartbeat.
Does that mean I'm likely to run for longer?
By reducing your feeling of tiredness, you are more likely to go on for longer.
What's more, research suggests that if you keep in step with the music, your stride will be more rhythmical and therefore more efficient.
Tests on walkers found walking in time to a musical beat improved endurance by 15%.
What is 'running to the beat'?
Running to the beat involves matching the beat of the music to your running speed to support your effort and, by speeding the music up, drive your running stride. Ideally, the beat should be even throughout the song – i.e. there should not be any changes of rhythm during the song. Also, try to pick songs with a similar beat when developing a playlist. Products such as AudioFuel specialise in beats per minute music.
What is 'beats per minute' music?
Beats per minute (bpm) music is specially composed to get you running in step with the number of beats on a track. All music has a bpm. Mercy by Duffy has 127bpm. Don't Stop the Music by Rihanna has 123bpm. Most people find 150bpm a gentle pace, and by 190bpm they are running as hard as they can.
Source: (NHS, 2017)