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article imageHow Gangnam Style can increase your pain threshold

By Tim Sandle     Oct 31, 2015 in Lifestyle
It's the tune that most people around the world have heard and the video that has smashed the YouTube 'most watched' record. But did you know dancing the 'Gangnam Style' can help with pain management?
Gangnam Style is an international hit song by the South Korean rapper Psy. The track was first released in July 2012. The song is part of the popular genre K-pop. Billboard notes that the phrase "Gangnam Style" refers to a lifestyle associated with the Gangnam District of Seoul. According to the L.A. Times, the song is about "the perfect girlfriend who knows when to be refined and when to get wild." However, most people don't listen to the song for its lyrical depth and focus more instead on the infectious beats.
In the unlikely event that you haven't seen the video, here it is:
Part of the appeal of the song is a series of eccentric dance moves. These moves may be a good way of getting exercise. They are also important, a research group have found, for increasing social bonding and helping with pain management. According to Wired, researchers arrived at these conclusions from observing 300 Brazilian teenagers who undertook different dance moves in small groups.
Each participant completed a questionnaire about the level of social connection and also about there experiences of pain, in relation to individual dancing and dancing in groups, to different types of music choreographed with different dance moves. Group dancing and dancing to energetic beats, like Gangnam Style, were the best across both criteria. The researchers attribute this to the level of endorphins released. Endorphins are opioid neuropeptides, produced by the central nervous system and pituitary gland.
These findings have been reported to the scientific journal Biology Letters. The research is titled "Synchrony and exertion during dance independently raise pain threshold and encourage social bonding."
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