Wed, Jul 10, 2013 - Page 11 News List

Listening to music when exercising helps relieve stress
聽音樂做運動 有助放鬆減壓

A woman listens to music while exercising on a treadmill in Taipei on July 4.

Photo: Chiu Yi-chun, Liberty Times

Office workers often experience unpleasantness such as stiffness in their neck and shoulders and muscle pain, but most people do not know that these ailments are caused by lack of exercise and the body being depleted of oxygen. Over an extended period of time lack of exercise can cause muscles to lose flexibility and become as hard as stone.

Many office workers make excuses for not exercising, such as not having enough time, being too tired after working, or simply being too lazy. Not having someone to exercise with makes it even easier to slack off. Chen Yi-chin, a doctor who runs a private practice for rehabilitative medicine, says that using music as an exercise partner makes it easier to regulate the intensity of one’s exercise and helps build stamina.

Chen says that a lifestyle consisting of sitting for long periods and not getting enough exercise can deplete the body of oxygen, subsequently causing lactic acidosis, a condition known in the medical field as “oxygen debt.” Oxygen debt acquired during the daytime can only slowly be repaid at night while sleeping, but if too much debt is amassed over a long period of time one will experience rigid neck and shoulders, sore muscles, lower back pain and sore joints. If you can spend some time exercising and increase the body’s metabolism of lactic acid, it will help alleviate work fatigue.

Studies have shown that music can actually improve physical coordination, increase the unloading of oxygen in muscles, and relatively faster music can increase your endurance during exercise. If you arrange the music you listen to while exercising from slow to fast, you will be able to exercise longer. Regardless of the tempo of the music, it can help you pay attention while exercising and increase stamina, Chen says.

Chen suggests listening to music at around 120 beats per minute (bpm) while stretching and doing warm-up exercises, adding that young people can switch to music at 140bpm or even 160bpm when they actually start exercising. Seniors, however, should only use music at around 120bpm for the entire duration of their exercise, he says.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)







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