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It’s well documented that listening to music while working out can help with your performance. Now new research is showing that your favorite tunes can also speed up your recovery period.
A small study using 10 male subjects in their mid-20s looked at how listening to music affected their recovery from bouts of intense exercise.
In three separate tests, the participants were asked to run on a treadmill at maximum pace for six minutes. After each bout of running, they cooled down by walking freely. After the first test, no music was played during the recovery after exercise. During the cool down after the other two tests, the participants listening to dance style music at 140 beats per minute.
A number of measurements were taken at intervals of 3, 6, 9, 12, and 15 minutes during the recovery period. These included heart rate, rate of perceived exertion (RPE), number of steps taken and blood lactate concentrations.
Results showed that recovery while listening to music was associated with a significantly greater number of steps and lower absolute lactate levels compared to recovery without music. Yet there was no difference in the change of heart rate during recovery.
While it seems that the rhythm of the music played an important role, the exact best rhythm selection has yet to be determined.
So next time you’re making a workout playlist, don’t forget to add a few rocking beats for your cool down.