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Article

Music Tempo: A Tool for Regulating Walking Cadence and Physical Activity Intensity in Overweight Adults?

1
Sports Lab North West, Letterkenny Institute of Technology, F92 FC93 Donegal, Ireland
2
Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute, Ulster University, Newtownabbey BT37 0QB, UK
3
School of Psychological Sciences and Health, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XQ, UK
4
Faculty of Education Health & Wellbeing, University of Wolverhampton, Walsall WS1 3BD, UK
5
Clinical Biochemistry Department, Ulster Hospital, South Eastern Health Trust, Belfast BT16 1RH, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Maria Giné-Garriga, Jason Wilson, Anna Puig-Ribera and Andrea Hergenroeder
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 7855; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157855
Received: 31 May 2021 / Revised: 13 July 2021 / Accepted: 19 July 2021 / Published: 25 July 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Promotion: Moving Forward)
This study investigated if music tempo can prompt a desired walking cadence, and if music can provide a stimulus to regulate physical activity intensity in a longitudinal physical activity intervention with free-living adults. Overweight adults (n = 37; 94.26 ± 17.11 kg; 49.63 ± 12.37 years) were randomly assigned to an intervention (IG, n = 17) or usual care group (UC, n = 20) as part of a novel nine-month walking intervention. IG participants walked to self-selected music with a predetermined tempo and received a behavioural change support programme. At baseline, four-, six- and nine-months participants were asked to walk around an elliptical track at their habitual pace (0–2 min) and then in time to a predetermined tempo (2–8 min) designed to elicit moderate intensity. Cadence response (steps/min) was assessed and intensity (heart rate (bpm) recorded using wireless telemetry. A repeated measures general linear model (GLM) examined differences between groups over time (p < 0.05). All data is presented as means ± SD. At each assessment point both groups displayed an immediate cadence adjustment in response to music tempo (p < 0.01) i.e., habitual cadence vs. 3 METs target cadence (p < 0.05) and 3 METs target cadence vs. 5 METs target cadence (p < 0.05). Additionally, IG participants displayed an increased habitual cadence (0–2 min) at each assessment point (p < 0.05; 110 ± 9, 121.80 ± 7.5, 121.46 ± 10, 121.93 ± 7 steps/min respectively). UC participant’s habitual cadence was unchanged from 0–9 months (p > 0.05; 120 ± 10, 116 ± 13, 119 ± 12 and 119 ± 9 steps/min respectively). Music tempo may be a useful regulatory tool to prompt the free-living individual to reach an appropriate stride rate to achieve a walking pace that is at least moderate intensity. It also appears that results may be trainable as throughout the study an increased habitual walking cadence was observed, in the absence of music. View Full-Text
Keywords: individualized physical activity; stride rate guidelines; beats per minute; physical activity guidelines; health individualized physical activity; stride rate guidelines; beats per minute; physical activity guidelines; health
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MDPI and ACS Style

Faulkner, M.; McNeilly, A.; Davison, G.; Rowe, D.; Hewitt, A.; Nevill, A.; Duly, E.; Trinick, T.; Murphy, M. Music Tempo: A Tool for Regulating Walking Cadence and Physical Activity Intensity in Overweight Adults? Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 7855. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157855

AMA Style

Faulkner M, McNeilly A, Davison G, Rowe D, Hewitt A, Nevill A, Duly E, Trinick T, Murphy M. Music Tempo: A Tool for Regulating Walking Cadence and Physical Activity Intensity in Overweight Adults? International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(15):7855. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157855

Chicago/Turabian Style

Faulkner, Maria, Andrea McNeilly, Gareth Davison, David Rowe, Allan Hewitt, Alan Nevill, Ellie Duly, Tom Trinick, and Marie Murphy. 2021. "Music Tempo: A Tool for Regulating Walking Cadence and Physical Activity Intensity in Overweight Adults?" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 15: 7855. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157855

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