How do you choose your music? Do you look for a song with a beats per minute that is exactly the cadence you want your participants to ride at or do you choose by how the rhythms, words and melodies make you feel and the road you would like to the music to communicate?
Choosing a song strictly for the cadence is not wrong. I sometimes do this especially if the goal of the class is focused on cadence, for example a cadence ladder. This can make it easier for some participants to find the desired cadence range. When you do this you need to remember that not everyone hears music the same way. Some participants will be able tune to one beat of the music that you choose to set the cadence while others may hear a different beat or rhythm all together. Don’t forget to provide participants another means to meeting the cadence targets such as cadence checks.
Choosing music by the emotion it communicates opens up the musical choice and:
- Provides the ability to program a variety of movements during one track which helps make the ride flow as one journey
- The above point in turn can change the participant’s perception of the time. The sense of time can change without the hard boundaries of one song, one movement.
- Allows for a deeper more of an emotional connection to the work
- Increases participants engagement
- Increases a participant’s performance. When we connect to something emotionally we tend to invest more of our energy
- Our sense of time passing can also change when we are more emotionally invested
Explore all different genres of music. You might not listen to a specific genre in your car but when you marry it with the rhythm of cycling it can become a powerful driving force.