I love music. I mean, I really really love music. I grew up with a dad who filled the house with everything from the Beatles t0 Don Henley to Air Supply and Peter, Paul and Mary. I then sang in choir and musicals throughout high school and college (we all have a little secret – that’s mine!). I have always relied on music for my workouts, whether exercising by myself or teaching a class. A good song and playlist has the power to motivate me through a workout when I’m tired and make me work harder than I would otherwise.
Researchers have long known that music and exercise both cause improvements in our health. Recently, more and more scientists are looking at the effects of music and exercise TOGETHER on a person’s health. They have found that, overall, people workout harder and are more consistent when music is involved. A study by clinical psychologist Charles Emery of Ohio State University looked at participants’ mental performance after exercising with music. They were given a verbal fluency test after exercising. The participants were each in the final week of a cardiac rehabilitation program. The results amazed me! On average, the people who listened to music while exercising performed twice as well on the test afterwards than the ones who did not listen to music. This indicates that mental performance can actually be improved when someone exercises with music.
To celebrate the amazing effects of music, I’m giving you an inside look at a few of my tried and true playlists. If you are a fitness instructor, you probably have the same addiction I have – making playlists. We LOVE to find the perfect songs and place them in the perfect order for class. I have different playlists for different moods, different seasons of the year, and different events and classes. Here are examples of two. Each are an hour long:
Pilates Barre Class – the first 35 minutes are very upbeat and are meant for standing barre work (think lots of lunges and squats!), while the second 25 minutes start to slow it down for mat Pilates work (abs and abs and more abs). note: I had to do three screen shots to get all the songs in, but you’ll notice the last screen shot just has one song that wasn’t in the other shots!
Pilates “Thank You” Class – This is a very special playlist to me because I used it on the last night I taught my regular Wednesday evening classes at Harmony in Hawaii. This is a great list to create gratitude and joy in class. It would be great if you need some uplifting music personally or are teaching a Thanksgiving fitness class!
Whatever the music or songs are, just find something you love! Plug in those headphones and get moving 🙂