26 Jun How to choose and use music for exercise?
Music is a key element of the practice of exercise and, if appropriate, can help us resist longer physical activity. In the same way, if we are not right when choosing the sound accompaniment, we will have difficulties reaching the appropriate rhythm. Music is as relevant in physical activity. Some disciplines have their origin linked to them. We explain how to choose music for exercise.
Steps to choose music for exercise:
- For exercise sessions that require a high level of physical demand, such as aerobics or spinning, it is necessary that the music also has a fast rhythm. Therefore, the dance is presented as more appropriate in this case.
- If what we are going to do are relaxing activities, music should help us find this state of mind. The new age is very appropriate, with notes that create a magical atmosphere away from everyday life.
- There are some disciplines, such as Zumba, whose origin is closely related to music.
- If what we are going to practice are long-term activities, such as running or long walks, we have to choose music. Otherwise, we will get tired soon.
- If we want to select the musical accompaniment, we can choose our favorite songs from different authors and genres and compose our list of assorted ones.
- If we practice sports outdoors in the field, it is very nice to listen to the sounds of nature, so it is best not to bring music.
What science says
First of all, we must ask ourselves if it is true that music improves our sports performance or just a perception. The doctor Costas Karageorghis, currently a researcher at Brunel University, is convinced of this in London.
To summarize: music is “ergogenic.” This means that it “makes you want to do things”: in essence, the brain triggers physiological reactions in the muscles. So yes, the performances really improve. They improve to the point that Dr. Costas has been chosen as the soundtrack consultant for London’s Run to the Beat half-marathon.
There are different types of rhythms
The speed of the rhythm is perceived instinctively because our ear is now used to hearing songs on different platforms, in different environments, and almost every day.
In music, rhythm is measured in bpm, “beats per minute.” Bpm is known to the general public of amateur athletes because they are also used for measuring heart rate, and it is no coincidence that the unit of measurement is the same.
If during sports training the musical frequency is set correctly, it is even possible to modify the muscular effort, and with it, the heart rate.
But since some listen to Vivaldi during the workout, a clarification must be made: the combination between heartbeat and music can be of two types, asynchronous and synchronous. When the relationship is asynchronous, the music appears in the “background” and gives general psychological well-being.
Sometimes, the musical rhythm approaches that of our beat. This is because we instinctively tend towards a “synchronous”: we are driven, often unconsciously, to perform movements in tune with the music.
How do you choose the right pace?
An athlete can consciously push their heartbeat to go to the rhythm of the “right” music.
In the beginning, choose music with a relatively slow pace to not consume too much psychological energy. But choose songs that stimulate you, for the lyrics or because you like the artist.
As your workout progresses, it’s a good idea to start matching the rhythm of the music to your work heart rate. Optimal bpm is about 5% higher than your working heart rate. Stop at 140 bpm, or you will risk a “ceiling effect”: continuing to rise, you will not improve your performance, but you will just get tired.
Now you may ask yourself… How do I calculate the pace of work? One solution is to have a friend film you, and only later look for the music that matches the rhythm of your movement. And if you are not interested in improving your performances… You have one more excuse to keep listening to good music!
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