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Res Q Exerc Sport. 2006 Jun;77(2):240-50.

Relationship between exercise heart rate and music tempo preference.

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School of Sport and Education, Brunel University, West London, Middlesex, England, UK.


The present study examined the predicted positive and linear relationship (Iwanaga, 1995a, 1995b) between exercise heart rate and music tempo preference. Initially, 128 undergraduate students (M age = 20.0 years, SD = 0.9) were surveyed to establish their three favorite music artists. A separate experimental group of 29 undergraduates (M age = 20.3 years, SD = 1.2) selected the music of a single artist from the three highest-rated artists from the earlier survey. They reported their preference for slow, medium, and fast tempo selections from each artist for three treadmill walking conditions at 40%, 60%, and 75% maximal heart rate reserve. A mixed-model 3 x 3 x 2 (Exercise Intensity x Music Tempo x Gender) analysis of variance was used to analyze the data. Results indicated there was no three-way interaction for music preference. There was, however, a significant (p < .05) two-way interaction for Exercise Intensity x Music Tempo (partial eta2 = .09) and a significant (p < .05) main effect for music tempo, with large differences evident between preference for medium versus slow tempo and fast versus slow tempo music at all exercise intensities (partial eta2 = .78). Participants reported a preference for both medium and fast tempo music at low and moderate exercise intensities and for fast tempo music at high intensity. Only partial support was found for the expected linear relationship between exercise intensity and music tempo preference.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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