Music While You Work.

Turn on your radio and work better!

When I was a child I was often chastised for playing music while studying. My defence was always a plaintive ‘It helps me work better’, and, I might have added, blocks out the noise of my two younger brothers!

It was with great pleasure that I later found out that there is scientific evidence to back up my claim of working better with music! (Although I am not sure if what I am about to tell you applies to the music of the 70s…..) However,  I now use music regularly in my seminars, usually the music of Mozart, and here’s why.

George Lozanov

The first clinical evidence of the effect of Mozart’s music on the human body was noted by Dr George Lozanov, a Bulgarian medical researcher. He wrote:

that a very specific form of music can induce a relaxed state in the body- but, with one very major difference. The music induced relaxation and, at the same time, left the mind alert and able to concentrate.”

Natural Rhythms

Subsequent research has shown that the natural rhythms of the body – breathing, heartbeats, and brain waves – tended to synchronise themselves to the underlying beat of the music. The results were amazing! Heartbeats slowed by an average of 5 beats per minute, blood pressure decreased and beta waves in the brain decreased.

All Music?

A wide range of music was tested but Lozanov’s results showed that music with a very slow, stately, restful rhythm of 60 beats per minute was best for inducing a heightened state of alert, focussed relaxation.

Subsequent studies have supported this original research and demonstrated the profound effect of Mozart’s music on creativity, learning and relaxation. For example, one study at the University of California found that students who listened to Mozart’s music for 10 minutes prior to an exam did better than those who hadn’t! Although maybe listening to any music would have had this effect!


If you want to try  this out for yourself here are some suggestions, all written by Mozart:

Piano Concerto 27 in B flat major KV595, Larghetto
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra 21 in C major KV476, Andante
Divertimento 15 in B flat for two Horns and Strings KV287

Try it out and let me know if you experience the so called Mozart effect!


Posted on February 16th, 2009 by

4 Responses to “Music While You Work.”

  1. Jim Connolly says:


    Great post!

    I almost always listen to music whilst I write and find it REALLY helps.

  2. It is funny, but I just realized my music was turned down just about the time I saw the Twitter from Jim (above). Thanks for reminding me … it was uncommonly quiet. 🙂

  3. Sharon Lymposs says:

    You are so right, I often listen to music whilst working at my desk in a busy open plan local authority office. It does help me to concentrate and focus but didn’t know why until reading your blog. Now looking for Mozart music downloads!

  4. Patricia Cresswell says:

    Great article Jane. My companion when I’m working at home in my office is ‘Classic FM’.

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