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Whether an intense run or wheel Assembly, as soon as the target is in sight, it means once the teeth bite together and pull through. In such a stressful Situation anything other than a Laugh in the face that is somewhere understandable.

But it is precisely because of the mistake of many athletes is A sports science study found that the conscious concentration on the expression on the face can have an impact on athletic performance.

Especially the last few meters, and with a conscious Smile can increase performance and help get the most from yourself. Frowning, however, the effort might even increase.

From the Smile to the frown

With a radiant finish line Smile crossing – this is exactly the right attitude, if you want to survive the last few meters with the best performance. This is the result of a study, which examined the positive impact of facial expression on the running training.

For the study 24 trained runners with different attention instructions have been influenced in their Training. Overall, the subjects had to perform four runs for six minutes.

In the first race, the runner deliberately with a Smile when they should frown in the second race of the forehead. In the third run, you should focus on the relaxation of your hands and upper body. As a control run, the last run under normal conditions could be run.

Smiling to more power

The researchers controlled continuously the oxygen consumption of runners – the results showed clearly that the consumption with a smiling facial expression was lower than when you frown.

A total of 14 runners ran with a Smile much more economical and showed an increased performance in the short-term runs.

But also the personal perception of the runners showed that a serious view will be perceived as significantly more strenuous than a Smile or the relaxation of individual parts of the body.

The researchers have received an important recognition for the measurement of performance in endurance sports: A conscious Smile changes the attention, provides relaxation and increased learning so that the efficiency of sport.


  • Brick, N. et al. (2017): “The effects of facial expression and relaxation cues on movement economy, physiological, and perceptual responses during running”, retrieved 22.04.2020

Michelle Steinmetz

*The post “New study: Why smile when Jogging to better performance” is published by FitForFun. Contact with the executives here.