Master's Theses


Health and Human Performance

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


The purpose of the study was to investigate the effects of listening to music during submaximal exercise on the time it takes to reach 70% of one's age estimated maximum heart rate, blood pressure, and rate of perceived exertion (RPE). This study compared the difference between and within healthy young adults and healthy elderly individuals as they exercised on a NuStep® at a progressive submaximal intensity. Published research has shown a positive relationship between the utilization of music during exercise and lower physiological and psychological responses. To date, though, this research has focused mainly on young individuals. Twelve young adults (M:21.25, SD=. 92) and 12 elderly individuals (MF67.25, SD=9.21) were randomly selected to participate in the study. All 24 participants completed every aspect of the study. A multivariate analysis of data technique using a repeated measures approach was implemented to measure the effects of music on the dependent variables of time to 70% of age estimated maximum heart rate, blood pressure, and RPE. The General Linear Model Repeated Measures design provided a means for the researcher to examine repeated measure differences within-participants (young and elderly) , and determine if time to 70% of age estimated maximum heart rate, blood pressure, and RPE differences existed between the young and elderly groups. Although under certain conditions music has been shown to lower RPE during submaximal exercise, analysis of the data showed no significant differences within groups for any of the dependent variables tested during both the music and control trials. Between group significant differences were indicated for the variables time to 70% of age estimated maximum heart rate and blood pressure at 70% of age estimated heart rate, but there was no significance determined for the RPE at this percentage of maximum heart rate. The between group significance could be attributed to the age difference of the two groups. The lack of significance for the within group data may or may not be due to a variety of factors, such as the exercise protocol, altered physiological responses due to medications, and the small number of participants . Although there was no difference indicated within groups during the control and music trials, many of the participants commented that the exercise bout with music was more enjoyable.


Dr. Greg Kandt

Date of Award

Spring 2002

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 2002 Elizabeth A. Wiens


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