A new study shows that going to music gigs is a very, very healthy habit.
Attending music gigs is one way to relieve stress and be social. It may also be a great way to add years to your life. Which is great news to most of the people reading this article.
O2 and Goldsmith University Associate Lecturer Patrick Fagan published the unexpected results. Fagan specializes in behavioral science, and headed into the study understanding the positive impact of communal arts experiences. What the data started showing, however, was pretty shocking.
According to the study, experiencing a gig for just 20 minutes can result in a 21% increase in feelings of well-being. Furthermore, the research found a direct link between “high levels of well-being and a lifespan increase of nine years” or more.
Of course, that’s up to a decade of extra living. If you’re aged 107, heading out to gigs every night won’t extend you to 116. But it does means that younger fans can effectively boost their life expectancies by indulging in the positive behavior. That is, provided they abstain from seriously harmful drugs, high-risk activities, and have generally healthy habits.
The life extension estimate wasn’t a random guess. Psychometric testing and heart-rate tests were given to the participants of the study. Results showed that the participants increased their feelings of self-worth (25%), closeness to others (25%) and mental stimulation (75%) when they attended gigs.
Going to gigs = a happier, healthier, longer life.
Overall, those who routinely enjoyed music gigs were found to be happier, better contented, and more productive, according to test results. Their self-esteem was also elevated (even if they went to Radiohead concerts, but I jest).
Speaking about the results of the study, Fagan praised the “profound” impact gigs can have on the human experience. He also said that “our research showcases the profound impact gigs have on feelings of health, happiness, and wellbeing – with fortnightly or regular attendance being the key.”
“Combining all of our findings with O2’s research, we arrive at a prescription for a gig a fortnight which could pave the way for almost a decade more years of life.”
Most of us know that music is beneficial to our health, but this is the first study that shows attending music gigs can actually add years to life. That said, one area that probably skews this data is that people who regularly attend shows are probably more social people, with a greater penchant to enjoy life’s pleasures (which benefits your health more broadly).
It’s kind of like that study that found that people who regularly floss their teeth live longer lives or enjoy unbelievable health benfits. The only problem with those conclusions is that people who floss are usually in better shape and have a broader health regimen. So it’s hard to isolate one activity.
And what about solitary musical pleasures? On that note, it turns out that confining your love for music to the comforts of your own home will still do you good. But attending a gig is way better.
So get off the couch and enjoy the language of the soul with other music lovers!