Screen time while exercising gets you in the flow

Screen time while exercising gets you in the flow

Modern gyms are full of machines with built-in TVs and plug-ins for music, but is this a distraction or can this be helpful while you’re exercising? A recent study supports the idea that watching TV or listening to music while exercising may influence people to exercise more often.

Researchers from the University of Ottawa examined a group of teenage boys after they exercised while watching TV or listening to music to determine the effect of screen time on their workout intensity. The teens were divided into three groups. The first group jogged on treadmills for 30 minutes while watching Netflix, the second listened to music for the same amount of time, and the third exercised without either a TV or music. Each teen did the workout twice, with a week between workouts.

The researchers determined that the teens who either listened to music or watched TV while exercising found the workout more enjoyable, were more likely to repeat the exercise and performed at the same level as the teens who did neither activity while exercising. They also found the teens who did an activity while exercising did not eat more or move less after the workout, too. The study is the first to examine the effects of exercise on diet or movement afterward. The findings of the study were published in the journal Appetite.

The message is that if you enjoy watching TV or listening to music while exercising, then continue to do so. If you’re enjoying the activity, you’re more likely to repeat it and to establish a steady exercise habit. Keep doing whatever it takes to keep you in the groove and keep you coming back for more.

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