Psychophysical and Ergogenic Effects of Synchronous Music during Treadmill Walking

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
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The present study examined the impact of motivational music and oudeterous (neutral in terms of motivational qualities) music on endurance and a range of psychophysical indices during a treadmill walking task. Experimental participants (N = 30; mean age = 20.5 years, SD = 1.0 years) selected a program of either pop or rock tracks from artists identified in an earlier survey. They walked to exhaustion, starting at 75% maximal heart rate reserve, under conditions of motivational synchronous music, oudeterous synchronous music, and a no-music control. Dependent measures included time to exhaustion, ratings of perceived exertion (RPE), and in-task affect (both recorded at 2-min intervals), and exercise-induced feeling states. A one-way repeated measures ANOVA was used to analyze time to exhaustion data. Two-way repeated measures (Music Condition × Trial Point) ANOVAs were used to analyze in-task measures, whereas a one-way repeated measures MANOVA was used to analyze the exercise-induced feeling states data. Results indicated that endurance was increased in both music conditions and that motivational music had a greater ergogenic effect than did oudeterous music (p < .01). In addition, in-task affect was enhanced by motivational synchronous music when compared with control throughout the trial (p < .01). The experimental conditions did not impact significantly (p > .05) upon RPE or exercise-induced feeling states, although a moderate effect size was recorded for the latter (ηp2 = .09). The present results indicate that motivational synchronous music can elicit an ergogenic effect and enhance in-task affect during an exhaustive endurance task.

The authors are with the School of Sport and Education, Brunel University, West London, U.K.