The melody and structure of song synchronized heart rhythms among choir members
MONDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) — When choir members sing together, their heartbeats become synchronized, researchers have found.
The new study included 15 members of a high school choir whose heart rates were monitored while they performed three different choral exercises: monotone humming, singing a hymn and chanting a slow mantra.
The music’s melody and structure had a direct impact on the hearts of individual choir members. Singing in unison caused a synchronizing effect that led to singers’ heart rates rising and falling at the same time, according to the investigators from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.
The findings were published in the current online edition of the journal Frontiers in Neuroscience.
“Singing regulates activity in the so-called vagus nerve, which is involved in our emotional life and our communication with others and which, for example, affects our vocal timbre. Songs with long phrases achieve the same effect as breathing exercises in yoga. In other words, through song we can exercise a certain control over mental states,” study author Bjorn Vickhoff explained in a journal news release.