Can music boost your running performance?

The Vancouver Rock and Roll Half Marathon is coming up this weekend, and we couldn’t be more excited by such a cool event. Did you know about the special relationship between music and running?

There is much research that supports the performance-boosting properties of music. Music can increase your motivation and your mood, two factors that play a huge part in increasing your running performance.

Some people also find that listening to music while running helps them keep a steady cadence. According to a study published by the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, runners can synchronize their steps to the beat with the right tempo of music. Songs that have a more prominent beat can help with this.

A study by Judy Edworthy and Hannah Waring found that runners who listen louder and faster music will take on faster running tempos. Compared to no-music condition, participants listening to fast and loud music ran harder for the same amount of perceived exertion. This means that though both groups thought they were running hard, those who were listening to music ran faster.

Many running races, including the Rock and Roll Half Marathon, take advantage of these benefits by having live bands perform throughout the race course. A pumped up atmosphere puts you in the right mindset to set a new personal best!

So keep your headphones out, and good luck this weekend!

What else can I do to improve my performance?

  • Having a proper warm-up and cool-down routine with stretching is key for injury prevention.
  • Wear proper footwear, and replace your shoes when they are worn down.
  • Cross-train and do other types of physical activity (such as tennis) to prevent muscle overuse injuries.

Many runners also find chiropractic to be an asset to their performance. Running on hard surfaces can create imbalances in the body caused by the forceful impacts. Chiropractic care can help with range of motion, injury prevention, and injury recovery by identifying those imbalances and keeping your body in proper alignment. Your chiropractor can also assist with fitting customized orthotics when necessary to improve your biomechanical function. Regular chiropractic care can help minimize the time you spend in recovery, and increase the time you spend doing the things you love.

By Courtney Chan, Chiropractic Assistant