It’s time to get your friends together for a dose of karaoke! Recent research shows singing together is good for your heart, lungs and mind.
While there’s an undoubted mood boost generated from singing in the shower, research has shown singing in a group elevates the sense of well-being higher than it does in people singing on their lonesome (cue strains of “All by myself”).
It worked for Sister Mary Clarence with her the nuns in cult classic Sister Act and a recent study undertaken by the University of Oxford concurs. The study suggests choral singers not only get enjoyment from the act of song, but singing was a fast way to form close bonds and a sense of belonging. Further studies indicated a statistically significant higher well-being in people singing with a choir compared to those who sang alone (but by all means, practise during your morning scrub).
The University of Gothenburg researched the health benefits of choirs showed the heartbeats of people singing in a choir synchronise. While singing can regulate a calm and regular breathing pattern, evidence shows when singing in unison, the singers’ heart rates increase and decrease simultaneously and have noticeably positive effects on blood pressure and respiratory systems.
“Singing regulates activity in the so-called vagus nerve which is involved in our emotional life and our communication with others and which, for example, affects our vocal timbre,” says the study’s lead author, Bjorn Vickoff. “Songs with long phrases achieve the same effect as breathing exercises in yoga. In other words, through song we can exercise a certain control over mental states.”
If you’ve ever been hankering to get the band back together, ain’t never been a better time with mounting evidence on the health and wellness benefits. Clear out the garage and warn the neighbours.
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