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Could up-tempo music boost physio results?

Friday 9th March 2018
Could listening to up-tempo music during physiotherapy sessions help to boost results? Image: Ridofranz via iStock
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People who listen to up-tempo music while exercising are able to continue working out for longer than those who exercise in silence, according to new research.

As a result, this suggests that listening to upbeat, fast music during physiotherapy sessions could potentially boost results by encouraging patients to work on strengthening their muscles and improving their physical fitness for longer.

The study was carried out by Texas Tech University Health Sciences. The researchers recruited 127 participants with an average age of 53 for the investigation; some were told to listen to up-tempo music while exercising, and the others were instructed to work out in silence.

For the purposes of the study, Latin American-style music was used, but the authors believe any similarly up-tempo music would be likely to yield the same results.

Participants were told to keep exercising for as long as they felt physically able to, and it was found that those listening to up-tempo beats could, on average, keep going for ten per cent longer than their counterparts who weren't listening to any music at all.

What's more, those who listened to music during their exercise sessions typically expended more energy than the group exercising in silence. This therefore further indicates that providing physiotherapy patients with music to listen to while working on their fitness and strength could have additional benefits for their health.

When presenting the findings of the study at the American College of Cardiology's 67th Annual Scientific Session, lead author Dr Waseem Shami explained: "This study provides some evidence that music may help serve as an extra tool to help motivate someone to exercise more, which is critical to heart health.

"Our findings reinforce the idea that upbeat music has a synergistic effect in terms of making you want to exercise longer and stick with a daily exercise routine. When doctors are recommending exercise, they might suggest listening to music too."

Written by Mathew Horton

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