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Music and Athletic Performance

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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Sweatin to the melodiesI recently started taking regular trips to the gym as a coping mechanism for the long, cold, oft-polar-vortexed Wisconsin winter. While I love being guided through workouts in a group exercise class, I’ve often lamented the fact that the music the instructors play isn’t always exactly what I want to hear. I always find I work out harder and longer when I’ve got my favorite tunes pumping in my headphones and synchronizing my steps. I recently saw this video and wished that I could also work out to hip hop jams:

Fortunately, the folks over at ASAP Science have released a video explaining the effects of music on athletic performance. Apparently, the optimal speed of a workout song is greater than 120 beats per minute. To that note, the song featured in the workout video above is only 83 BPM, but since Lil Boosie’s “Wipe Me Down” contains sentimental Baton Rouge memories for me it’s still quite effective in getting me to work harder at the gym. Check out ASAP Science on the topic in the video below.

Image via Flickr user Ed Yourdon

Princess Ojiaku About the Author: Princess Ojiaku is a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin - Madison in Neuroscience and Public Policy. She is also a student of life, exuberant nerd, and musician. She often tweets her daily links of interest and digital personal mutterings. Follow on Twitter @artfulaction.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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