Fitness Connection | Music’s Healing Power and the Fitness Connection.
Fitness Connection. A rising number of people have learned how music can help them relieve daily stress, medical issues like migraines, and mental issues like anxiety and sadness. Both music and exercise have the ability to block or redirect stress chemicals, lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety, invigorate and calm us, and increase our focus. When music and fitness come together, they establish an even stronger link.
We have the chance to leverage this music-fitness connection in our aquatic and group exercise courses, as well as personal training and therapy sessions, as fitness and healthcare experts. As a result, we are all therapists in some way, and the end outcome of a class or session is a complete mind/body treatment.
Music’s healing power is part of the medical arsenal that helps us get back to our workout routines after an illness or accident. Music soothes us, causing endorphins to be released (the “feel good” hormones). These endorphins help us manage pain and get back to our fitness routines faster.
Endorphins are released during aerobic exercise, which helps the brain block pain signals. Exercise can also help with sadness and anxiety, which are common side effects of chronic pain; swimming or aqua aerobics in a warm pool are particularly useful for chronic pain. Not only can endorphins help with pain, but they also serve to regulate stress chemicals like cortisol.
The hypothalamus sends a signal to the pituitary gland, which then informs our adrenal glands to generate cortisol, when our brain detects any type of bodily stress. We may be able to help avoid degenerative diseases like heart disease and cancer by keeping stress hormones under control, whether through regular exercise and/or listening to music.
Music can help cancer patients cope with the stress of chemotherapy, which can cause anxiety and mental distress. According to a study conducted by Barrie Cassileth, PhD, patients who got music therapy had 37 percent less total mood disturbance and 28 percent less anxiety than those who did not. 1
Music, like water, has analgesic effects that help to reduce the physical strain and pain of exercise. Music can help people exercise by distracting them from the effort and so keeping their minds off the pressure and pain. Music’s good influence on endurance and exercise performance, according to researchers like Luis F. Aragn-Vargas, PhD, helps people to exercise longer and harder.
Music also adds to the fun, especially when it is music you adore. Water exercise is ideal for individuals who want an “easy-on-the-joints” workout. This type of workout, when mixed with music, will provide you with the benefits of resistance training as well as increased endurance, performance, and enjoyment.
Do you know somebody who is both a musician and an excellent athlete? In my years of teaching and training, I’ve seen a lot of them. Playing a musical instrument can help you sharpen your senses, enhance your coordination, and improve your timing. These are also necessary components of athletic training.
Music, silence, and static noise were employed as control factors in two investigations with interesting findings. These three criteria were used in one study to assess immune system strength. The immune systems of those who were exposed to quiet showed no response and remained unchanged. Those exposed to static noise had a lesser immune system response, but those who listened to music had a stronger immune system.
When these same three control factors were used in an exercise bike test, those who listened to music travelled 11 percent further. Another eight-week walking research at Ohio State University found that individuals who listened to music went 21 percent farther than those who did not. The subjects in this study had severe lung illness.
When utilised with autistic youngsters, one way of mixing music with fitness showed good behavioural effects. The non-verbal and non-threatening quality of music is regarded to be the reason for this good medium. It may simply be necessary to locate the child’s chosen music before using it. There is no one type of music that is more useful than the others.
Music that the individual enjoys will always provide the highest therapeutic results. Music and fitness are nicely combined when used in a game scenario. Simple activities like passing a ball back and forth to music can be used.
Michelle Dozois, an international fitness presenter, has discovered that music has a significant impact on her autistic son. Music has a mood-altering influence on him as it soothes him. “It quickly transforms his demeanour,” Michelle adds. “Music has a therapeutic effect on the body and psyche.”
Physical therapy is a great illustration of how music can help with movement. Sharlynn Landers, PT, MPT, has worked with patients to improve their gait using sound. The “scuff” of the feet promotes auditory recognition, allowing the therapist and patient to distinguish between the sounds of each foot.
Music is being used by many healthcare providers to stimulate motor function. Music therapy has been shown to help patients with nerve damage caused by Parkinson’s disease or stroke.
Dr. Oliver Sacks, whose book Awakenings was adapted into a feature film, transformed his early passion for music into a career in music therapy. The individuals he talked about in his book were afflicted with an encephalitis that rendered them unresponsive.
They didn’t move much and didn’t say anything. Dr. Sacks, persuaded that “someone” was still inside each of them, employed music to help them awaken. He discovered that by playing the proper music, they were able to modify their stuttering steps and even dance.
Dr. Sacks also worked with people who had Tourette’s Syndrome. He discovered that many artists did not experience tics while performing, and that sportsmen experienced similar relief while participating in sports. After injuring his own hamstring, Dr. Sacks experienced the healing power of music firsthand. He was distracted and walked properly when his physical therapist played music during his session. When the music stopped, he lost his ability to walk easily.
Music mentally rejuvenates us, allowing us to function better throughout the day. Music helps us to think more clearly, allowing us to make better decisions. Listening to music, such as a Mozart work, before taking an exam has been demonstrated to increase test scores. “Mozart Makes You Smarter,” for example, was a popular tagline in recent years.
Playing music while pregnant may raise your child’s IQ because musical vibrations promote hearing and enhance brain development. Listening to calm, quiet nurturing music like Mozart’s, which mirrors a mother’s heartbeat, has been advised.
Exercise strengthens the heart and lungs, but numerous studies have proven that, like music, exercise also strengthens the brain. Physical activity has been shown to improve brain function, particularly in older persons, according to studies. Using brain scans of men and women aged 66 to 89, researchers discovered that individuals who were more physically active had superior concentration abilities and were less readily distracted.
Another research of 90 healthy older women found that a long-term fitness regimen improved their memories and reaction times. Adding music to a workout can have a psycho-physiological effect, making the participant more motivated and able to exert himself more easily, resulting in a higher level of performance.
We can bridge the gap between illness and wellness by combining the healing powers of music and exercise. As a result, we can become more fit, enhance our immune systems, and improve our overall health and well-being. Music has the ability to not only improve our workout but also to provide us with the fitness link between musical sound and good health.
The Health Benefits of Fish Oil
In your efforts towards fitness and health, oils and fats are not always the bad guys. There are bad oils and fats, but there are actually good ones. In fact, fats are actually important for the body; you only have to be careful with the kind of fats you are allowing into your system. There are actually fats called essential fatty acids which your body needs for proper functioning. They are called essential because:
- they are important, hence “essential”
- they can’t be produced naturally, and must be sourced from the food we eat
Essential fatty acids are divided into two categories: omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Despite the fact that the only variation appears to be in the number, they appear to have opposite physiological impacts. Omega-6 EFAs are thought to cause blood clotting and inflammation, whereas Omega-3 EFAs counteract this by lowering inflammation and supporting healthy blood flow. Omega-6 is abundant in vegetable oils, but omega-3 is abundant in fish sources, particularly fish oil.
Today, there is a major issue since most diets contain a substantial imbalance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Hypertension, heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, premature ageing, diabetes, and cancer have all increased as a result of increasing omega-6 intake. It has been discovered, however, that if we put in more effort to shift the balance toward omega-3, we can acquire enough fatty acids to boost our health and counteract omega-6.
The first thing you should focus on in your quest for a wonderfully fit and healthy body is your nutrition. The good news is that omega-3 fatty acids EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which are two of the most effective omega-3 fats, are abundant in fish oil and fatty fish.
Both DHA and EPA have been shown to be beneficial in the prevention of heart disease, depression, and certain malignancies. These supplements are also highly suggested for treating diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, bipolar disorder, ADHD, ulcerative colitis, and a variety of other disorders.
This fitness connection doesn’t end there. In reality, the omega-3 fatty acids in it provide a lot more to someone who wants to get fit and healthy:
- It can assist you in reaching your weight-loss goal; add it in your weight-loss diet to see an increase in metabolism and fat reduction.
- Omega-3 fish oil can help you have a healthier heart, keep your cholesterol in check, and lower your blood pressure.
- It promotes the release of serotonin, a happy hormone that not only makes you look nice but also makes you feel good.
Fish oil and fitness are inextricably linked in amazing ways. Make sure to include fish oil in your daily diet if you want to stay fit and healthy.
Age and Physical Fitness – Maintain Your Strength and Vitality Throughout Your Life
I make it a habit to ask everyone I meet if they want to live for 100 years or longer. What do you believe the majority of people will do? I hope you answered yes, but I was astonished to learn that the majority of people said no.
We appear to have a poor perception of what it’s like to be 100 years old. Even though few of us know someone above the age of 100, the prevailing perception is that they are frail, unwell, and incapable of caring for themselves.
This negative perception of ageing stems from the reality that far too many people get physically ill at a young age. This unfavourable state of ageing, in my opinion, is caused mostly by a lack of sufficient nutrition and physical activity.
We would no longer fear ageing if we could maintain a high level of mental and physical fitness throughout our lives. The good news is that we can, and will, accomplish our goals! The fundamental point is that we not only can, but should. Be excited about the prospect of becoming older.
I believe that we are all spiritual beings that are learning lessons through our physical bodies. In our desire to become a higher conscious spiritual being, life is a continuous learning process. We now know that human life expectancy should be around 125 years, rather than the present average of 78 years. Failure to embrace a healthy lifestyle robs us of approximately fifty years of useful and fun learning opportunities…
Most of us are probably aware of the numerous health benefits that a customised fitness programme may provide, such as lowering blood pressure, heart rate, and body fat, boosting circulation, muscle strength, flexibility, and mental alertness, and so on. These elements become more important as we get older if we want to stay vibrant and enjoy our lives to the fullest.
Dr. Ken Cooper claims in his book “It’s Better to Believe ” that his most recent studies on ageing have revealed no substantial deterioration in the primary parameters of ageing in physically healthy persons. Fit people over 65 frequently have better blood pressure, aerobic ability, and flexibility than unfit 25-year-olds. There are numerous excellent instances of what is humanly possible at any age.
My friend and novelist Noel Johnson of Pacific Beach is one such example. In his nineties, Noel raced marathons. You don’t have to get in shape to run a marathon, but there’s no reason you can’t achieve and maintain a level of fitness that will allow you to live an active, lively life for the rest of your life.
For the most part, adequate physical fitness can be defined as the ability to engage in any necessary daily physical activity without hesitation or unnecessary stress. Physical fitness is a key component of overall health and well-being, as it allows us to look, feel, and perform at our best.
Proper breathing, flexibility, aerobic, and muscular strengthening activities should all be included in a basic but complete physical fitness programme. First and foremost, everyday practise good breathing methods. Flexibility is the first thing to go as you get older. Learn proper stretching techniques and put them into practice on a daily basis.
Fitness walking, bicycling, running, swimming, dancing, skating, and other aerobic sports can be done everyday or every other day. Enjoy is the essential word here. Make sure you enjoy yourself while doing it, and you’ll keep with it. Maintaining muscle tone and strength as we age is also critical. Many people fall and harm themselves due to a lack of strength and balance.
Two or three times each week, a muscle-strengthening programme of callisthenics or lightweight training exercises is very helpful and can help prevent injuries. Daily rest and relaxation, as well as some type of meditation, are also quite beneficial.
I strongly advise you to seek the advice of a fitness professional to help you build a safe and effective workout programme tailored to your unique needs and interests. Having a personal fitness trainer also helps you avoid procrastination and stay motivated. One of my favourite quotes that helps me stay motivated is: “Do we stop playing when we become older? Or do we get old because we don’t play anymore?”
I believe we all want to find our life’s purpose and have the energy and longevity to achieve our goals. The cornerstone for reaching these goals is developing and implementing a personalised exercise programme. Taking care of your body will allow you to completely appreciate the wonderful experience of growing older.