Whether your a music lover, or not, one thing can’t be denied… and that is… that listening to music (of any kind) has an effect on the human mind and body… It’s as if there’s no escape, if you will. When you hear it, things happen in your mind, which can affect the body as well in the end….
It also appears, in some studies, that the type of music that has the most positive effects, is really just the same type of music that a person has always preferred listening to throughout their life. I.E. it does not have to be classical music, for example… to bring about the positive effects.
Memories, and or, past experiences associated with a particular type / genre of music (if those experiences were good) will be revisited in a positive way when a person listens to that music in the future. I think most of us can already attest to that to some degree.
The Seven Benefits
Some of the overall benefits of listening to, or playing music include:
1. It makes you happier
Everyone on the planet can testify to their having listened to a song that immediately lifted their spirits a bit (or a lot)… Of course, the opposite can happen if the music your listening to is not something your prefer, or worse, very far from being something you prefer to listen to.
2. Helps to distract you from mundane tasks
Like driving hundreds of miles down the same stretch of highway… Music can tend to make such an activity a bit more tolerable. Having someone to talk to, or share in your dread of driving to where ever it is that you a re going, but sometimes you might have to make the trip alone letting music come to the rescue.
To be perfectly honest… I tend to listen to more news or podcasts these days when traveling, rather music – despite being a musician… but still… music helps too…
3. Increases workout intensity
Having an energizing tune coming through your headphones can certainly make you feel like you more energy than might actually have, making it easier to get through your workout.
I don’t prefer to listen to headphones while running, walking, or even in the gym because I like to be totally aware of my surroundings, but it is motivating to hear certain types of music over the gym’s speakers when trying to get those last few reps in…
And you are going to want to get those last few reps in, or run that last mile if you’re a trumpet player… (Since I used that picture as the featured image) If you’ve ever played the trumpet, then you’ll agree with me when I say that hitting those high notes takes a lot of concentration and “wind power.”…
4. Increases IQ levels
Learning to play an instrument often includes trying to learn how to have different parts of your body performing different tasks at the same time.
Piano is probably the best instrument to use as an example, but think of playing the guitar, or drums – same challenges are present when taking on any of these (choose just about any other instrument) instruments.
With the piano, you have the bass clef (left hand) and the treble clef (right) trying to conduct performances at the same time. That takes “just a little” bit of mental power to make that happen.
Or, with the drums, you have the challenge of playing the high-hat with one hand and maintaining the beat with bass drum on your right foot (and everyone always forgets about the drummer – not realizing the skill that is needed just to maintain the correct time for the rest of the band for 2-3 or more minutes – not that easy)…
5. Helps you eat less?
Apparently it might be possible to loose weight simply by listening to music. Well, most of us knows that a little more work is required to safely loose weight, and more importantly, no two people are created equal when trying to loose weight…
However, it has been said that the combination of soft light and music can help you eat slower and enjoy your food more in the process.
I’ll have to honest here again by saying, that I know that when I’m in a restaurant listening to music, I may eat slower and I usually enjoy my food; however, I don’t think I eat less.
So I think the idea here is that by eating slower, you will have time to realize you are getting full before it’s “too late.” Evidently, it takes several minutes for your stomach to send you an “I’m getting full” signal. So if you’re eating too fast, you may not know that you’re full until you are “really full.”…
6. Builds up your vocabulary
Studies have shown that a large percentage of children and adults alike that have taken music lessons of some sort, have a larger vocabulary than their peers who have not taken music lessons.
7. Prepares your mind for old-age
Pick just about any respected medical website you like, and most will agree upon the overall mental benefits of learning how to play an instrument.
The same can be said for learning a new language, or simply reading for an hour-a-day. The more your brain is actively engaged in your younger years, the more “you” will be engaged later in life. Of course, there’s no way to prevent certain conditions from just happening in life no matter how much care you’ve taken throughout your life, but…
Perhaps, there are some things we may stave off simply by being more mentally active. And playing an instrument definitely takes some mental endurance…
Active music appreciation can have the same affects I would think. By “active music appreciation,” I mean that you take the time to figure out the instruments you’re listening to, and or, how the music fits into the visual media you’re watching (if watching a video /movie of some sort)…
Hope this helps…
- University of Central Florida