Smiling while running is the science hack to make exercise easier and faster

omg 09/04/2021

A new study has found that if you’re bored, sore or fatigued then you should try smiling!

A study that was published in the Psychology of Sport and Science journal found that smiling makes running easier as it helps distract runners from the pain of running and helps reduce muscle tension. Researchers in Ireland conducted tests on trained athletes that ran intervals on a treadmill. The athletes had to express different body language like smiling or frowning while wearing a breathing mask.

Participants used 2.8% less energy smiling than they did when they were frowning. They also conserved 2.2% more energy than compared to just running normally.

"The main reason for the 2.8% improvement in running economy, we believe, was that smiling helped participants to relax and reduce muscle tension without deliberately, or consciously trying to relax," Noel Brick the lead researcher commented.

"We know that runners are more efficient when they are relaxed, so this seems the most likely reason.”

It isn’t too surprising that a smile helps running because it seems that in every study we see that smiling just makes life better! This is just another great reason to keep a smile on your dial.