There’s no denying that music is powerful: It makes us move, smile, laugh, dance, cry, and so much more. Hearing the right song at the right time can immediately change our mood. It can get us excited about new TV shows and movies, influence what we buy and eat, and even affect where we travel for vacation.
Listening to the right music is one of the easiest ways that people can immediately improve their performance at a task or job. Here are just a few of the ways that the right tunes can aid professionals of all types:
The right music playlist can help to dramatically enhance athletic performance all around, from casual exercisers to pro athletes. It can even give athletes a competitive edge, which is why the use of music and personal music players have often been debated at pro sports events. And listening to something they enjoy can help to regulate mood, reduce stress, and even improve how well individual exercises are carried out during training sessions.
So, what type of music should athletes listen to in order to improve performance? That largely depends on individual taste, what stage an athlete is in for his or her workout, and the type of workout that needs to be performed. For example, upbeat music of any genre is usually best for getting athletes in the zone, particularly during long and demanding training sessions. It can help them to push themselves harder or exercise longer by distracting them from fatigue or time passing. Then, when it’s time to cool down, athletes can switch over to more calming music to help them properly wind down and rest after a gruelling session.
For pro poker players, choosing the right music to listen to can help to improve focus while playing, reduce stress, and set the right mood. It can also make long tournaments feel less tedious, and help players to have the mindset needed to perform at their best. Players who don’t take advantage of the benefits of music might be more likely to stare at the clock, get distracted from the game, or let stress affect their decision-making process — which are all huge issues when the stakes are high!
As for the “right” music to listen to, that often depends on personal tastes. Some players find classical music and jazz to be the most calming and intellectually stimulating, while others might prefer metal or rock to ramp up their competitive mood or clear their minds
For some fiction writers, listening to music is too distracting when creating fictional worlds. But for others, it can be just what they need to focus on creating that world, helping to distract them from everyday sounds like construction or loud neighbours. But it can also inspire them, set the mood for a piece, entertain them, and keep them writing.
Additionally, the right genre of music or song can help authors to better understand their characters, write specific scenes, or get them in the mood for writing a period piece. For example, listening to classical music from the nineteenth century might help a writer to get in the zone for writing a historical drama from that time period.
The stakes for pro gamers continue to rise, with tournament cash pools now reaching the millions. Like pro athletes and high-stakes poker players, it’s extremely important for pro gamers to get in the zone for gameplay. Choosing the right music for a game can improve motivation, focus (especially while sitting for long periods of time), and reaction times. It can help gamers to tap into a more competitive and aggressive mood, which will improve how well they play.
However, like with exercising, it’s important that the music gamers choose matches the pace of the game. (Ever notice how the wrong tunes that come pre-loaded for an NBA game can immediately take you out of the zone?) For example, while pro gamers might be able to get away with any type of music for casino games, they might find that hip hop and rap are better for eSports, and that metal, techno, or rock are best for first-person shooter or arena-style fighting games.