Watching A Film In The Cinema Counts As A ‘Light Work Out,’ Experts Claim
We get it. It's a new year and you've got health and fitness goals you're hoping to achieve.
But there's also so many good films in the cinema - and frankly, there's just not time for hardcore gymming alongside all that movie binging.
Well, fear not, because a new study has found that a trip to the movies could actually count as a 'light workout'. Yes, really.
The research, conducted by University College London (UCL) and Vue Cinemas, examined 51 people who went to see the live action remake of Aladdin last year, and used sensors to track their skin reactions and heart rates.
The subjects were then compared to a group of people who spent the same amount of time reading a book. And guess what? Scientists said there was a "noticeable increase" in the cinema-goers' heart rates in comparison to the readers'.
While watching the film, the subjects were in what is known as the healthy heart-zone (40-80 per cent of its maximum rate) for 45 minutes - the equivalent of a "light form of cardio".
And okay, we'll level with you... this isn't the same as if you were to do a HIIT workout or go on a run (it's more like a walk or doing the gardening), but either way it's something, right?!
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The heart rate increase is due to the fact that the you're encouraged to focus your brain for a long period of time, and your body reacts and is stimulated throughout the movie.
In fact, the research found a trip to the movies could even boost your concentration and memory for this very reason.
And interestingly, the hearts of the people watching the film also appeared to synchronise as everybody followed the drama in real time.
UCL's professor of cognitive neuroscience Joseph Devlin explained: "Cultural experiences like going to the cinema provide opportunities for our brain to devote our undivided attention for sustained periods of time.
"At the cinema specifically, there is nothing else to do except immerse yourself.
"Our ability to sustain focus and attention plays a critical role in building our mental resilience, because problem-solving typically requires a concentrated effort to overcome obstacles."
On that note, anyone fancy a trip to the movies?
Featured Image Credit: Unsplash