Headbanging harmful to health, finds Australian study

Posted by PP on 16/11/09

Those of you who can read Danish, check out the article here. I've been trying to find the link in English in another news outlet without much luck, so here's a small paraphrase:

Researches Declan Patton and Andrew McIntosh from the School of Risk and Safety Science in Sydney University have published a study in the newest issue of the British Medical Journal which claims that repeated headbanging can be hazardous for health.

Their results claim that adverse symptoms of headbanging to music over 130 beats per minute OR when headbanging angle is too big include hearing loss (Nothing to do with the loud music perhaps?), increased risk of stroke, as well as mild traumatic brain damage. As an example we can take Terry Balsamo, Evanescence guitarist, who incurred a stroke from headbanging in 2005.

The average headbanging song has an average speed of 146 bpm, which can cause problems like headache and confusion if the angle of movement and neck is larger than 75 degrees. The risk increases as the speed goes up.

The effects of headbanging can be reduced significantly by minimizing the usage of head and neck movement, or even better by headbanging to songs with a lower tempo. The researchers also suggest that you only headbang to every second beat.

The research has taken place at several heavy metal concerts including Motörhead, Mötley Crüe, Skid Row, The Hell City Glamours, L.A. Guns, Ozzy Osbourne, Winger, Ratt, Whitesnake and W.A.S.P.

The recommendations of the study include that heavy metal fans should be listening to Celine Dion, Enya or Michael Bolton instead.

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