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Motorists warned not to listen to 'world's most relaxing song'

Lucy Devine

Published 
| Last updated 

Motorists warned not to listen to 'world's most relaxing song'

There's a song that's so relaxing that drivers are actually being warned not to listen to it while behind the wheel.

Said to be the most calming song ever, the eight-minute piece of music has been found to reduce blood pressure, slow the heart rate and also decrease levels of cortisol, aka the stress hormone.

And it can even make people so relaxed they become drowsy - which is why it shouldn't be listened to while driving.

There's a song that's so relaxing, drivers are actually being warned not to listen to it behind the wheel. Credit: agefotostock/Alamy Stock Photo
There's a song that's so relaxing, drivers are actually being warned not to listen to it behind the wheel. Credit: agefotostock/Alamy Stock Photo

In a study by shower gel brand Radox Spa, the song - which is called 'Weightless' by Marconi Union - was even found to be more relaxing than heading out for a walk, having a massage or enjoying a cup of tea.

The research saw a group of women given timed puzzles to complete in order to increase stress levels. They were then played a number of different songs while heart rate, blood pressure and breathing were monitored.

The study found that 'Weightless' was 11 per cent more effective than others, reducing anxiety by 65 per cent and even making some of the participants 'drowsy'.

One expert has warned people not to drive while listening. Credit: Westend61 GmbH/Alamy Stock Photo
One expert has warned people not to drive while listening. Credit: Westend61 GmbH/Alamy Stock Photo

Dr David Lewis-Hodgson, who conducted the research, said: "The results clearly show that the track induced the greatest relaxation - higher than any of the other music tested.

"Brain imaging studies have shown that music works at a very deep level within the brain, stimulating not only those regions responsible for processing sound but also ones associated with emotions.

"In fact, Weightless was so effective, many women became drowsy and I would advise against driving while listening to the song because it could be dangerous."

The band worked with sound therapists on the track. Credit: Antonio Guillem Fernández/Alamy Stock Photo
The band worked with sound therapists on the track. Credit: Antonio Guillem Fernández/Alamy Stock Photo

So what makes it so relaxing?

Well, the band worked with sound therapists on the track, using pianos, guitars, chimes, and buddhist chants to create the melody.

Lyz Cooper, founder of the British Academy of Sound Therapy, said: "The song makes use of many musical principles that have been shown to individually have a calming effect.

"By combining these elements in the way Marconi Union have has created the perfect relaxing song.

"The study found this to be the world's most relaxing song. It contains a sustaining rhythm that starts at 60 beats per minute and gradually slows to around 50. While listening, your heart rate gradually comes to match that beat.

"It is important that the song is eight minutes long because it takes about five minutes for this process, known as entrainment, to occur.

"[...] And there is no repeating melody, which allows your brain to completely switch off because you are no longer trying to predict what is coming next."

You can listen to the song here.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: News

Lucy Devine
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