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Listening to groovy music improves cognitive skills

It must have happened to you. You listen to music and an irrepressible urge to move overcomes you. Sometimes you start moving to the rhythm of this music without realizing it. Neuroscientists have been studying this phenomenon for several years. A recent study found that listening to music groovy improve cognitive functions. Explanations.

Music, the brain’s ally

There is growing evidence of the benefits of physical activity on cognitive function, including executive functions. In particular, a previous study had shown that the key factor behind this positive effect of exercise on executive functioning is the positive emotional response it evokes. Thus, the effect on the neural circuits of the pleasure provided by exercise would improve executive functions.

Knowledge ! Why is it so important to strengthen your executive functions? Because it is the totality of mental processes that enable us to carry out basic activities such as planning, organizing, strategizing, paying attention, remembering details and managing time and energy.

Other work revealed another element that would enhance executive functions. This is associated with the positive emotional responselisten to music groovy. Through “Music groovy », say the scientists of music that makes you dance. The movement of your body to music is a universal phenomenon that is widely studied by scientists. In fact, this is an important power of music that researchers are trying to incorporate into various therapies. For example, studies have also shown that listening to music groovy improves walking performance in patients with Parkinson’s disease. This would be explained by an optimization of the patients’ cognitive abilities.

listen to music groovy improves executive functions

It turns out that the executive functions are made possible in large part by the activity of the prefrontal cortex. As the name suggests, this cortex is located in an area of ​​the brain that is at the level of our forehead. In a recent study, researchers at Tsubuka University in Japan wanted to find out whether listen from the music groovy improves executive functions and modifies the activity of an area of ​​the prefrontal cortex.

For this they included 51 participants. They were divided into two groups:

  • A group listened to music groovy for 3 minutes;
  • The other listened to a white noise metronome for 3 minutes (this is a sound that combines all sound frequencies at once with some evenness, it resembles the sound of light rain).

Before and after listening, participants performed a Stroop task and their brain activity was measured. They also completed a subjective emotional questionnaire to indicate whether they found listening enjoyable, funny, or boring.

Knowledge ! The Stroop task is a cognitive psychological task. It is based on the induction of an interference generated by an irrelevant non-confirmation during an exercise. The difficulty of ignoring this irrelevant information leads to an increase in the time to complete the task and the percentage of errors. Stroop’s task is often to read a list of color names. For example, the word “red” is written in blue. This creates an interference between the meaning of the word and the meaning of its color. It is therefore more difficult to read the word “red” if it is written in blue and not in red.

The results of the study show that the participants express the greatest pleasure in listening to music groovy had the best performance associated with greater activity of the prefrontal cortex area examined. So people who loved music groovy had better executive functions. An additional argument to integrate more music into our everyday life.

Alexia F., Doctor of Neuroscience


– Groove Rhythm stimulates the function of the prefrontal cortex in groove fans. Retrieved May 31, 2022.

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