In any race or on any running path, you often see more runners wearing headphones than not. Unplugged purists think being aware of your surroundings is an elemental part of the sport, but a growing subculture of runners wouldn’t dream of taking a single step without their motivating playlists.
In South Africa, as in many other countries, the use of portable music devices in official races is banned, although many ignore the ban and it is not strictly enforced by race organisers.
Yet the clash between headphone lovers and haters continues. On the pro side is Dr Costas Karageorghis, a sports psychologist who has studied music’s positive influence on athletes. His challenger is Dr Jim Denison, a sports sociologist and coach who thinks it is best to run to the sound of your footfalls.
Here the two have it out.Do some runners need music more than others? People say running clears their heads. How does music affect that? When running on a treadmill, music is necessary, right? What do you think of races that feature music along the course? So how can runners use music to their best advantage?