Study: Going to the movies can count as exercise

BySteve Daniels KFSN logo
Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Going to the movies good for your heart?
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Going to the movies good for your heart?

A trip to the movie theater can be as good for your heart as a trip to the gym, according to a study from the University College of London.

Well, maybe not. But in a small sample study, researchers observed 77 people in conjunction with a movie theater chain and discovered their heart rates during a two-hour movie were in a zone similar to light exercise.

"This level of stimulation can help to build cardio fitness levels and burn fat," the study authors wrote. "Heart rate peaks were also aligned with specific storyline moments in the film."

The participants watched the 2019 live-action version of Aladdin and wore biometric sensors to track their heart rate.

Researchers also say a trip to the movie theater is good for our mental health because it allows us to disconnect from other stresses.

"The cinema is one of the only places left where you can step away from devices and the outside world and truly switch off," says the study. "Over half of viewers believed that the experience was therapeutic in an emotional sense and felt uplifted by the experience."

The study was funded by a British theatre chain.