There are many reasons why someone might attend a concert - maybe their favorite band is headlining, the tickets were really cheap, they want to support local artists, their friends are going, etc. But there's actually another reason to go to a show that's even more important and applicable to everyone yet rarely known: live music provides a multitude of physical health benefits and, according to some scientists, can even help you live longer.
Some positive effects of attending a music gig are plain to see - standing in the crowd while jumping and dancing along to some tunes is obviously beneficial to one's physical health, and singing along to your favorite band either by yourself or with friends is always a fun time. But according to a 2018 study, the benefits go even deeper than that to drastically affect our physical and mental wellbeing, ultimately helping people live longer, happier lives.
A 2018 study from the United Kingdom concluded that attending a concert or another event with live music every two weeks can drastically benefit someone's health, to the point of extending their life expectancy by nine years. Additionally, experts found that spending just 20 minutes at a show is enough to increase feelings of wellbeing and happiness by 21 percent. The study even compared concerts to the effects of wellness activities like yoga and dog-walking and found that the benefits of live music were much, much higher.
The scientists found that grooving along to a live band significantly increased markers along the "happiness spectrum" as well - specifically, a 25 percent increase in feelings of self-worth and feeling close to others, as well as a whopping 75 percent increase in mental stimulation. Similarly, the study found that people who regularly attend music gigs score extremely high when asked about personal happiness, contentment, productivity and self-esteem.
There are even more ways that music has been proven to positively affect our health, most of which we aren't even aware of. Listening to music can be an effective therapeutical treatment for people dealing with mental and emotional stress like trauma or PTSD symptoms. A study of 251 children from ages 8 to 16 found that music therapy helped ease depression by improving levels of self-esteem and decreasing symptoms of depression, even more so than standard therapy could. The same effect was found in a study for people struggling with insomnia, which confirmed that listening to classical music improved students' sleep quality more than listening to an audiobook or complete silence did. Music can even significantly minimize pain and anxiety for patients in surgery.
Based on such well-documented studies and newly found evidence, it seems that both listening to music and attending concerts can help you be the healthiest version of yourself and can even extend your life - as long as you don't get trampled in the mosh pit, that is. And if that's not a convincing reason to go jam out to a live show as much as possible, I don't know what is.