Sunday, January 29, 2012

Matching Music Tempo and Physical Activity Increases Endurance

The Daily Muse

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Sports psychologist, Costas Karageorghis, at Brunel University is validating a key idea used in music therapy.  The "iso" principle basically maintains that music is most effective when it is matched to the current excitement level and emotional state of a client.  The music stimulus can then be used to help guide a client in the desired direction of excitement or emotion by slowly changing its characteristics.  

You can find the original Graph online at National Geographic (September, 2011).  Because I can only find it online in Spanish, here is the basic idea of the article:

The major categories are: Largo = resting, Andante = Walking, Allegro = Training, Presto = High-intensity training.  I have no idea how they picked the song examples, but I think it was interesting to look at the songs and how they compare to each other in tempo.

Mr. Karageorghis reported that when the tempo and physical performance are well matched, an average person's endurance is prolonged.  This makes sense just by thinking about how long you can stick with an aerobics or spin class routine with or without the right kind of music!  

It is nice to see researchers outside of the field of music therapy picking up on this idea!

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