Working Out in VR Reduces Pain and Heart Rate, Study Finds

It is a well-known fact working out is quite bland and boring. Especially when doing this solo, the time seemingly doesn’t pass too quickly. Virtual reality can be of great help in this regard, as the experiences can make users gyrate in many different ways. Research now shows using VR can be quite beneficial in terms of boosting performance and endurance.

Working out in VR Appears Healthy

Depending on how one wants to work out, the experience can be either very pleasant or painstakingly slow and agonizing. Once one begins to “feel the burn”, the fun is pretty much over. Tricking the brain into thinking there is no such thing as pain can help, albeit that is much easier said than done.

New research shows how virtual reality can help complete workouts in many different ways. It boosts performance and endurance first and foremost. Additionally, it can mitigate the level of perceived effort and pain. It seems the virtual environment tends to make people “enjoy” the workout in different ways.

During a recent study, those who wore VR headsets were able to see their arm holding a weight in a bicep curl. While that might not seem amazing, the end result is very different. Those who are not subject t private body consciousness tend to endure far less pain than others. This is a positive side effect of virtual reality, as the attendees lasted longer and suffered from less pain while performing exercises.

Interestingly enough, those who wore the VR headset had a lower heart rate compared to others. That is rather interesting to note. The group claims this is due to a different perception of effort used to perform the curl. This results in a near 10% pain reduction, which gives users more energy and desire to keep the workout going. This research may be the catalyst needed to get more people to exercise on a regular basis.

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By JP Buntinx

JP Buntinx is a FinTech, VR, and Bitcoin enthusiast living in Belgium.