Can Mozart Help Build Muscles?

Ash Tsuji
December 16, 2015

Can Mozart help you build muscles? According to a recent HMSA Music for Health Workshop I attended, the answer is “yes”. Our facilitator told us about the Mozart effect and studies where people who listened to Mozart experienced muscle strengthening. On the other hand, people who listened to rap music experienced muscle weakening.   

I found this factoid frightening since my workout playlist consists mainly of ‘90s rap songs (don’t judge). So, I decided to do a little experiment and created a Mozart playlist for my afternoon workouts.  While I’ve only been doing this for a week now, I noticed a few changes.

Rest/recovery time:  The time I spend resting between sets has decreased, and I’ve been jumping into the next set a lot quicker. That’s a definite advantage since shorter rest times have been shown to increase muscular endurance.

Weights: While I haven’t seen any huge strength gains, I was able to lift more than I usually do on shoulder day. Normally it takes three to four weeks of consistent exercise before seeing any strength gains, so I think this is just a result of normal exercise.

Volume: When listening to rap music, I always blast the volume at almost the max level. With Mozart, however, I noticed I played the music at a much lower volume. It’s no secret that listening to loud music, especially with head phones or ear buds, can lead to hearing loss. So, lowering the volume is a definite plus for the well-being of my ears.

Since I’ve only been doing this experiment for a week, it’s hard to make any real conclusions but, I’m willing to give Mozart some credit. After all, as the Health and Music Workshop pointed out, music boosts your mood, and your mood boosts your well-being.

Do you have a favorite type of music for working out? Let me know in the comments section below!

If you want to learn more about this, or other well-being workshops, visit

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