Sport Sciences for Health

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 369–373 | Cite as

Effect of listening to music during a warmup on anaerobic test performance

  • Russell P. Fox
  • Timothy J. Michael
  • Carol A. Weideman
  • Nicholas J. HansonEmail author
Original Article



Many studies have investigated the effect of listening to music during exercise on performance, but the influence of music during a warmup on subsequent exercise performance is unknown. The primary purpose of this study was to determine whether or not listening to self-selected music before an intense bout of anaerobic exercise would positively affect performance. We also sought to explore the effect of music on psychological variables including rating of perceived exertion (RPE).


16 participants (8 males, 8 females; age 23.6 ± 4.8 years, BMI 18.9 ± 3.2 kg/m2) listened to pre-selected music, self-selected music or white noise during a warmup, which consisted of cycling at 50 rpm for 10 min with a resistance of 1 kg. Once the warmup was completed, they performed a Wingate Anaerobic Test (WAnT) against a flywheel resistance of 7.5% body mass. Immediately after the WAnT, they were asked to complete the Subjective Exercise Experience Scale (SEES) and RPE was assessed. One-way repeated-measures ANOVAs were used to determine the effect of music condition on both physiological and psychological variables.


There were no significant differences in mean or peak power, relative power, fatigue index, or RPE (all p > 0.05). There were also no differences in any SEES variables (positive well-being, psychological distress, or fatigue) or in RPE (all p > 0.05).


This study suggests that listening to music during a warmup has no positive effect on performance during the actual event, even when the music is self-selected.


Brunel Music Rating Inventory Athletes Anaerobic Exercise 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

None of the authors have any conflicts of interest to declare.

Ethical approval

The study was approved by the Human Subjects Institutional Review Board at the university.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia S.r.l., part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Russell P. Fox
    • 1
  • Timothy J. Michael
    • 1
  • Carol A. Weideman
    • 1
  • Nicholas J. Hanson
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Human Performance and Health EducationWestern Michigan UniversityKalamazooUSA

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