Listening to music when you hit the floor at SALT isn't exactly a new concept, most of us do it, but understanding why your favorite beats can enhance your exercise is a little less obvious. A growing body of research suggests that music directly affects your motivation during your workout.
You might be working out from home right now, and you may be feeling a little less motivated than usual. Here are four good reasons to rock-out during your next workout, even if you can't be with your beloved SALT Squad right now....
1. Music reduces feelings of fatigue
Research indicates that music will keep you from focusing on the physical sensations of fatigue, particularly during lower-intensity exercise. Distraction from fatigue varies from person to person, and your personal fitness level plays a role too, but the right music can help you to push yourself harder during your workouts.
2. Music increases mental arousal
“Altering the mind’s arousal state with music will result in an increased exercise performance, as if the music is ‘psyching’ one up to perform exercise better,” wrote researchers Karageorghis and Terry in their review of the psychophysical effects of music in sport and exercise (1997).
You've probably got that go-to song that gets you "in the zone," right? There's science to why that works. We associate certain songs with memories, often relating to the context in which we originally heard them, maybe in a movie, or similar. Channeling that memory - or even the emotion of the singer - boosts the motivational power of the song, and has been shown to improve physical performance.
3. Music improves motor coordination
Exercising to music can help motor and movement coordination, such as moving to the beat of the music during one of Sal or Kieran's classes. When your body is in sync with music, you'll experience a boost in self-confidence that creates a positive association with exercise.
4. IT MAKES YOU WANT TO MOVE
You really can't stop the beat! Researchers have found that when you listen to something with "high-groove" qualities, your brain gets excited and wants to move. Basically, your playlist has the ability to make you move - no matter how much you're dreading it!
Overall, when you are inspired, you are more likely to exercise and maintain motivation. From aiding performance to pushing your workout intensity just a little bit further, a little music can go a long way.
...so, what's on your playlist?
If you're missing SALT and you'd like a little reminder, Sally has curated this 30-minute set to get you moving: