The deep controlled breaths of singing along with the harmony it can bring to the singer makes singing possibly as healthy as yoga.
Researchers at Sweden’s University of Gothenburg found that heartbeats of choir members became synchronized and therefore introduced a calming effect on their mind and body.
Lead researcher Dr. Björn Vickhoff tells The Telegraph:
“Song is a form of regular, controlled breathing, since breathing out occurs on the song phrases and inhaling takes place between these… It gives you pretty much the same effect as yoga breathing. It helps you relax, and there are indications that it does provide a heart benefit.”
Researchers studied a group of teenagers by having them sing the following types of harmonies: chanting, humming, and singing a hymn.
The study couldn’t create a direct comparison with singing and yoga since there are so many forms of the exercise that focus on different aspects of our lives including harmony, strength training, and more.
However, what the study found was that singing like yoga releases endorphins which in turn makes us feel better. The release of endorphins have been tied to overall healthier living.
This isn’t the first time a connection to singing and health has been discovered. Researchers at Australia’s University of Newcastle discovered that lower level of depression have been found in the elderly when they singe.
If nothing else, regularly singing has been proven to increase expiratory capacity, which in turn can lead to the faster treatment and recovery of various diseases including cancer.
Still not convinced that singing can be just as good as yoga? A 2008 study by Harvard and Yale found that a town with a high number of choir singers beat the average life expectancy in America.
Singing makes a lot of people happy so perhaps there is a grain of truth to this study.
Do you think singing is just as therapeutic as yoga?
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