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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Soothing the Savage Beast

I've always believed that music has an amazing ability to calm both us and our animals.  Our current little terror, Hurricane Ginger, is certainly soothed by her favorite Tim Janis .   We kept it playing in the house during the early days when she was truly terrified by life in her new home and even played it in the car during some of those early rides in the crate.  I've joked several times that I need to figure out how to hook up the Ipod for walks and for obedience classes -- can you put earbuds on a dog??
Now, Paras Lakhani M.D. has gone and proven me right --- The study didn't use Tim Janis (sorry, Tim) it used Handel's Water Music (another lovely piece).  It found that the heartbeats of humans actually dropped to match the pace of the music -- in the case of Water Music -- about 60 beats per minute -- far slower than most of our regular heartbeats these days.
And according to the study -- this has a surprising effect:  it makes concentration and learning easier.
Who knew??