Music distracts people from pain and fatigue, elevates mood, increases endurance, reduces perceived effort and may even promote metabolic efficiency. When listening to music, people run farther, bike longer and swim faster than usual-often without realizing it. In a 2012 review of the research, Costas Karageorghis of Brunel University in London, one of the world’s leading experts on the psychology of exercise music, wrote that one could think of music as “a type of legal performance-enhancing drug.”
We’ve previously seen that the right BPM (beats per minute) of a song can improve a workout, but why is that? Citing a 2012 study by researchers at Sheffield Hallam University in which people who cycled in time to music needed 7 percent less oxygen than other cyclists, Scientific American explains that syncing your movements to music might help your body use energy more efficiently: maintaining a steady pace, reducing false steps, and decreasing how much energy you expend.
Continue reading the rest of the story on Lifehacker