Gig-going is good for the mind, finds new study

Going to a gig, it turns out, is better for you than doing yoga.

That’s according to a new study. This will be music to the ears of many folks – because, let’s face it, gig-going is way more fun than getting all hot and sweaty in a fitness class, right?

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Experts came to the conclusion after a group of volunteers were fitted with heart rate monitors, then split up and sent to a Paloma Faith gig, a yoga session or to walk their dog.

Psychometric tests carried out before and after the studied activities – all of which are known stress-busters – found those who enjoyed 20 minutes of a Paloma Faith gig had a higher level of ‘wellness’ than other participants.

The scientific study by O2 and Patrick Fagan – an expert in behavioural science and Associate Lecturer at Goldsmith’s University – revealed that wellbeing increased by 21 per cent from just 20 minutes of gig-time, compared to just 10 per cent for yoga and only 7 per cent for dog-walking.

What’s more, additional scholarly research directly links high levels of wellbeing with a lifespan increase of nine years – pointing to a direct link between gig-going and longevity.

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Accompanying research showed a positive correlation between regularity of gig attendance and wellbeing.Those who attend live concerts once a fortnight or more were the most likely to score their happiness, contentment, productivity and self-esteem at the highest level (10/10), suggesting that regularly experiencing live music is the key to building a long-standing improvement to our wellbeing.

Those looking for a quick-fix, however, should not just look to listen to music in private, with more than two thirds (67 per cent) of Brits surveyed saying experiencing live music makes them happier than simply listening to music at home – which suggests that the shared experience is key to increasing wellbeing.

“Our research showcases the profound impact gigs have on feelings of health, happiness and wellbeing – with fortnightly or regular attendance being the key,” says Fagan.

“Combining all of our findings with O2’s research, we arrive at a prescription of a gig a fortnight which could pave the way to enjoying almost a decade more years of life.”