And, in the odd chance that someone is not toting a gadget they are usually utterly transfixed by at least one of the dozen television screens. That in most cases are actually mounted to the treadmills. Personally I don’t mix entertainment and exercise. For me, music and TV are just background noise. I like to focus on what I’m doing, I don’t know, something about holding heavy weights above my head makes me want to pay attention, call me crazy.
Well according to this article by the Associated Press my attitude might be a good thing. It seems some experts believe all these gadgets can distract us from listening to our bodies. As the report points out this can be potentially hazardous. Michael Hill has more:
But are those distractions good or bad for exercisers? Researchers say it cuts both ways. Yes, a dose of video or audio can inspire better workouts. But distractions can also hurt performance. In a way, music can add some static to the mind-body connection…Okay, I admit it, the Rocky theme song makes me workout a little harder. But how many of you have been running and all of a sudden that Eye of the Tiger song comes on? Then you crank the treadmill up real high only to bring it down real low before the song is over, while exaggerating some kind of ache. Guilty!
… In a 2005 study, British researchers put 18 undergraduates on stationary bicycles to pedal either to silence or to "popular electronic dance music" on headphones. Participants worked about 13 percent harder to the up-tempo music compared to silence. One of the researchers, Sam Carr, suggested in an e-mail interview that music competes with an exercisers' awareness of how hard they're breathing, or how much their legs ache.