Asian women workout (illustrative)
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)

Could Playing Music Under 120 Bpm Slow Spread of COVID-19?

South Korea has decided to restrict gyms from playing music at over 120 beats per minute (bpm) during group activities like aerobics and spinning.


In South Korea, they’re struggling with another coronavirus wave. Instead of closing the gyms the government stated that it’s forbidden to play rhythmic music at over 120 beats per minute. The speed of the treadmills will be limited and other restrictions implemented. These laws caused a great deal of opposition and many questions: “How can one control the music that people hear?”

The vast majority of people who regularly work out in gyms probably love music that puts them into a rhythm and motivates them during exercise. But, South Korea has decided to significantly reduce this musical option under the new coronavirus restrictions.

In addition to social distancing and various similar rules, this Asian country has also decided to restrict gyms from playing music at over 120 beats per minute (bpm) during group activities like aerobics and spinning. 

The state health authorities explained that the purpose of these guidelines is to prevent exercisers from breathing too fast or sweating near other people, in order to reduce their chances of getting infected, which could lead to the business closures that happened in previous corona waves.

But this law, as you must have guessed, has caused a great deal of opposition on the part of exercisers and also lawmakers who have called it “nonsensical,” along with gym owners who oppose this law and claim that it’s ineffective and impossible to implement.

Hang Yun-Koo, owner of a gym in north Seoul, commented on this restriction, by asking if playing classical music or quiet songs has been proven to prevent the virus spreading? He added that many people use headphones to listen to music they choose, so you can’t control what they hear.

South Korea, which is dealing with a big corona wave, added additional restrictions and even decided to limit the speed of treadmills to only 6 km/h and a ban on using showers in gyms. The government also decreed that no more than two people would participate in table tennis games at once, among another rules. 

Will it help them? It remains to be seen.