What do you listen to while working out? Our tastes are many and varied, whether you like to plug in your best workout earbuds and listen to some upbeat dance music to keep you going during a demanding HIIT session, some hardcore metal to get you angry while you lift weights, or even some chilled-out music or a podcast to help you escape the pandemic during a run.
UK gym chain PureGym (opens in new tab) has trawled Spotify's many home workout playlists to look at the common tracks and artists, in order to identify what we're all listening to during our workouts. It turns out the most popular workout song right now is Roses – Imanbek Remix by SAINt JHN, which features in 382 of the most popular home workout playlists around.
The full list of the top songs on our workout playlists can be seen below:
- Roses – Imanbek Remix – SAINt JHN (featured in 382 home workout playlists)
- Blinding Lights - The Weeknd (363)
- Don’t Start Now – Dua Lipa (322)
- Head & Heart (feat. MNEK) – Joel Corry (269)
- Physical - Dua Lipa (253)
- Lose Control - MEDUZA (235)
- Boss B*tch – Doja Cat (183)
- Dance Monkey – Tones And I (179)
- Breaking Me - Topic (178)
- 'Till I Collapse - Eminem (177)
Dua Lipa, who pops up twice on the list above, also features as the most popular overall artist on the workout playlists analysed by PureGym. She featured in an impressive 1,337 related playlists, far and above Drake (1,047), Eminem (903) and Kanye West (883).
Listening to music during home workouts isn't just a motivational tool or about entertainment: it's also a highly effective way of improving our fitness. One study published by researchers from Brunel University (opens in new tab) in London found listening to music reduces your perception of how hard you work during exercise, allowing you to exercise harder before getting tired.
In addition, the study also found listening to music improves how efficiently your body expends energy. During a run, using your energy more efficiently means you'll be able to go a little bit faster or farther while wearing your best running headphones. During HIIT, you'll be able to squeeze a few more burpees out of a set.
However, it's far from the only tool out there: when doing especially monotonous exercise such as running, or spending some time on the best exercise bike, listening to a podcast can be an amazing way to pass the time and pick up new information.
In an interview with the Washington Post (opens in new tab), Chris Friesen, an author and sports performance psychologist, said: "When you’re running, there’s enough activity in your brain to keep it semi-activated, but your brain is going to have lots of cognitive space available. You can use the cognitive space to learn something new."
Matt Evans is an experienced health and fitness journalist and is currently Fitness and Wellbeing Editor at TechRadar, covering all things exercise and nutrition on Fit&Well's tech-focused sister site. Matt originally discovered exercise through martial arts: he holds a black belt in Karate and remains a keen runner, gym-goer, and infrequent yogi. His top fitness tip? Stretch.
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