PainSci summary of Patton 2008?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible. ★★★☆☆3-star ratings are for typical studies with no more (or less) than the usual common problems. Ratings are a highly subjective opinion, and subject to revision at any time. If you think this paper has been incorrectly rated, please let me know.
It turns out that head-banging, “a popular dance form,” constitutes “a definite risk of mild traumatic brain injury” and the study “helps to explain why metal concert goers often seem dazed, confused, and incoherent.” I can think of other reasons! Part of the reason I wanted to share this beautiful piece of science is that I grew up in a youth culture dominated by heavy metal — a small industry town in northern Canada, Prince George. I was surrounded by head bangers, and they were definitely dazed, confused, and incoherent. And worse! But there is a strong possibility that the daze preceded the heavy metal in many cases.
The risk of neck injury also increases with head banging intensity — although less than one might expect, which we can infer from the way people are able to keep doing it.
original abstract†Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the risks of mild traumatic brain injury and neck injury associated with head banging, a popular dance form accompanying heavy metal music.
DESIGN: Observational studies, focus group, and biomechanical analysis.
PARTICIPANTS: Head bangers.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Head Injury Criterion and Neck Injury Criterion were derived for head banging styles and both popular heavy metal songs and easy listening music controls.
RESULTS: An average head banging song has a tempo of about 146 beats per minute, which is predicted to cause mild head injury when the range of motion is greater than 75 degrees . At higher tempos and greater ranges of motion there is a risk of neck injury.
CONCLUSION: To minimise the risk of head and neck injury, head bangers should decrease their range of head and neck motion, head bang to slower tempo songs by replacing heavy metal with adult oriented rock, only head bang to every second beat, or use personal protective equipment.
These two articles on PainScience.com cite Patton 2008 as a source:
- PS Save Yourself from Neck Pain! — A complete guide to chronic neck pain and the disturbing sensation of a “crick”
- PS How PainScience.com Works — A behind-the-scenes tour of the quirky, custom tech of PainScience.com (especially the “bibliography first” design principle)
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- A Bayesian model-averaged meta-analysis of the power pose effect with informed and default priors: the case of felt power. Gronau 2017 Comprehensive Results in Social Psychology.
- The neck and headaches. Bogduk 2014 Neurol Clin.
- Agreement of self-reported items and clinically assessed nerve root involvement (or sciatica) in a primary care setting. Konstantinou 2012 Eur Spine J.
- Effect of NSAIDs on Recovery From Acute Skeletal Muscle Injury: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Morelli 2017 Am J Sports Med.
- Association of Spinal Manipulative Therapy With Clinical Benefit and Harm for Acute Low Back Pain: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Paige 2017 JAMA.