The Power Of Music On Overall Wellbeing, According To Studies

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The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) reports that the average time people spend listening to music has increased. According to the report on Yahoo News, music lovers spent about 20.1 hours a week playing their favorite playlist in 2022, up from 18.4 hours in 2021. Music is ever present in our lives, as we connect to it every time we walk into our favorite malls or restaurants. Or sing along to our favorite tunes while listening to music at home or in the workplace.  

While most people listen to music for entertainment only, the benefits of having music in our lives are many. Music soothes the mind, alleviates pain, and energizes the body. Read on to understand the power of music on your overall well being based on research studies. 

Music Improves Cognitive Function

A study published in the Journal of Cognitive Enhancement reveals that listening to relaxing music genres improves cognitive function. These genres are piano, jazz, and low-fidelity (Lo-Fi), or music produced with intentional imperfections like misplayed notes and environmental noise. Typically, soothing music decreases heart rate and respiratory rate, thus improving brain performance. This is especially true when listening to background music while paying attention to other tasks.  

Besides enhancing alertness, listening to music has a positive effect on your memory and boosts learning abilities. In a study published by the National Institute of Health, individuals who were reading and memorizing short lists of words while listening to background music outperformed those reading in silence. It’s worth noting that music doesn’t reverse memory loss experienced by people with dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. However, according to the Mayo Clinic, music can slow down cognitive decline and help people diagnosed with mild dementia remember some episodes in their lives. 

Listening to Music Boosts Endurance and Performance

Many people enjoy exercising for longer when they listen to music. That’s because fast-paced, upbeat music boosts your heart rate, giving you enough energy, and fueling your motivation and performance. With this understanding, music is a perfect performance enhancer. Since it doesn’t involve taking supplements, music could be the legal performance boost every athlete needs. Listening to music as you workout helps rewire the brain, decreasing focus on the tedious activity while elevating your strength endurance and enjoyment. 

When synchronized with physical exercise, music creates a psychological effect. For example, listening to a song with a strong steady beat triggers your body to run or pedal to the beat of the music. You’ll feel satisfied, relaxed, and inspired to exercise more. Several study results published on the Center for Research website reveal, to achieve the best performance when cycling, you need to listen to a song with a tempo of 125 to 140 beats per minute. For enhanced performance on the treadmill, consider songs with a tempo of 123 to 131 beats per minute. Some of the best music genres to listen to when working out include rock, hip-hop, heavy metal, pop, and techno. 

Music Helps Reduce Stress

There’s no doubt your favorite music keeps you motivated and calms you down when you’re upset. Chances are you’ve been trying to understand how music helps you relax when you’re feeling anxious or stressed. Naturally, listening to music helps lower your heart rate and cortisol levels. Not to mention, music stimulates the brain to release good feeling hormones, like dopamine, which helps reduce feelings of anxiety and depression. Songs like “Strawberry Swing” by Coldplay, “Electra” by Airstream, “Watermark” by Enya, and “Weightless” by Marconi Union also distract you from physical and emotional stress, allowing you to live in the moment, thus improving your sense of well-being. 

The power of music in your life is something you can’t ignore because you listen to upbeat and downbeat songs every day at work or home and while walking in the streets. Apart from entertaining you, music plays a significant role in ensuring you stay healthy. Every time you listen to your playlist, your cognitive performance increases significantly. Listening to music while exercising helps improve performance and strength endurance. Music can also be an effective stress reliever. 

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