Artists and musicians must recognize the importance of exercise, not only for maintaining physical wellness but also as a means for improving creativity.
The world of artists, particularly musicians, has changed a lot even before the pandemic had closed down bars and nightclubs. Nonetheless, the pandemic and the resulting global ban on mass gatherings gave many musicians the chance to take time out from non-stop engagements and socializing that barred them from taking exercise regimen regularly.
Apparently, serious thoughts have been given to the results of a study performed by Stanford University researchers in 2014, which sought explanations on why most well-known personalities have anecdotally claimed that walking has helped them in their thinking processes.
Although the premise of the study centered mostly on walking activities, the findings are linked to the results of previous studies with similar findings. In earlier years, neuroscientists had conducted studies on how exercise improves the convergent thinking of people who exercise at least three times or more every week.
The Stanford University researchers found out that even the simple act of walking can greatly improve not only physical and mental wellness, but can also enhance creative thinking abilities. Cognitive efforts, specifically the so-called convergent and divergent thinking, greatly improve the ability of individuals in processing their thoughts, when looking for solutions to problems, as well as in conceptualizing original ideas.
What is Convergent and Divergent Thinking?
In understanding the effects of exercise on cognitive abilities, a deeper understanding of the concepts of convergent and divergent thinking will help us appreciate the significance of the 2014 Stanford study.
Convergent thinking is defined as the process of analyzing details that relate to a specific problem. To which the solutions can be deduced through logical reasoning and decided by applying systematic operations or mathematical calculations. In convergent thinking, the goal is to come up with ideal solution/s in addressing or solving a specific problem.
Divergent thinking is more of an exploratory process of thinking as the goal is to look for ideas by asking open-ended questions that serve as problems. Simply stated, divergent thinking is more about asking clever questions that would lead to solutions hidden behind an inspiring notion that pose as the predicament or problem. Rather than simply accept a conventional or popular solution, a divergent thinker will go further by asking “What if” as a way of exploring the different angles of a viewpoint.
That is when “out-of-the-box” ideas become visible, which divergent thinkers develop and introduce as solutions to problems that were revealed through questioning. While artists and musicians have innate artistic skills or musical talents, they need to be adventurous by exploring other possibilities that they can develop as new approaches to creating artistic content or unique musical compositions.
While running is the most common form of exercise performed by people doing ordinary or regular jobs, we now appreciate the fact that a simple activity like walking can help us improve our creative thinking ability. Still, just like running, taking long and frequent walks can still put extra pressure on one’s feet and therefore requires the wearing of proper footwear.
As an aside to this guest post, when looking for a foot gear that is ideal for both running and walking, we recommend the New Balance 993. This running shoe model provides the right amount of cushioning support for short bursts of physical, non-intensive running or walking activities. After all, we’re still going through a health crisis brought about the COVID-19 pandemic, which requires us to limit our exposure to outdoor elements and conditions.