What Happens To Your Body When You Listen To Music

Music can make a difference in all aspects of your life. It can help calm you when you're nervous. It helps power you through your workout. Music can even be a great friend to get you through a breakup. Is the power of music all in our heads? Not necessarily. Music's influence on our brains can change what's going on in our bodies.

Think about your last long drive. What music did you play? A 2019 study in i-Perception found that the pace of your music can affect your attention and level of fatigue. Slow-tempo music boosts attention temporarily, but it's not so great for combating fatigue. Faster tempos can wake you up, but you might not pay as much attention to the road. Medium-tempo music works best for reducing fatigue and holding your attention during long drives.

Some types of music can affect your cardiovascular system. According to a 2009 study in the Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, listening to stimulating music increased participants' heart rate and breathing. They also had less carbon dioxide in their exhales.

Music can help reduce pain. In a 2018 study in the European Journal of Integrative Medicine, people who listened to music during their angiography felt less pain than the people who had no music. The music group also had lower systolic blood pressure.

How music can affect your body during workouts

Who doesn't love it when the lights dim and the music pumps during spin class? Do you burn more calories? A 2009 study in Perceptual and Motor Skills says you don't, but the music can make you feel less tired and enjoy your workout more.

Music can help you walk longer. An olderĀ 1990 article in the Journal of Music Therapy reported that participants walked further when music was playing than when they had no music.

A faster music tempo at the gym can influence your weight training, even if it's instrumental music. According to a 2020 study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, college-aged men could produce more power in a leg extension exercise when listening to instrumental music with a fast tempo.

According to a 2020 review in Health Psychology Review, music can reduce psychological and physiological stress. Music stokes the emotional part of our brain, which can explain why we feel good when we listen to music that we find to be pleasant. What's more, music can also help distract us from our stressful thoughts and feelings, getting us out of our negative thought loops.