Learning with music can change brain’s structure, study shows
Using music to help learn a physical task can significantly develop an important part of the brain, a study says.
People practising a basic movement task to music showed increased structural connectivity between regions of the brain processing sound and control movement.
The Edinburgh University research, the first showing music cues help learning motor neurone challenges, revealed how brain wiring enables cells to communicate with each other.
Experts said the study could have positive implications for research into rehabilitating patients who have lost some movement control. They hope research will determine if music helps with rehabilitating stroke victims.
One group of right-handed volunteers undertook a task with musical cues, a second group without. MRI scans showed a significant increase in structural connectivity in the first group.
Dr Katie Overy, research team leader, said: “The study suggests music makes a key difference. We have long known music encourages people to move.
“This study provides the first experimental evidence adding musical cues to learning new motor task can lead to changes in white matter structure in the brain.”
Results are published in the journal Brain and Cognition.
0 Dr Katie Overy: ‘Study shows music makes a key difference’