Motivation

Discover The BEST Workout Track Based On Your Favorite Training Playlists

Listening to music during training could give you that much-needed boost for those last few reps. In fact, a study from Applying Music in Exercise and Sport argues that tempo and lyrics can actually affect your performance by altering your mind set or distracting you from discomfort.1

So, we’ve run the numbers on your favorite training playlists to find the tracks that make you tick.

With help from Sort Your Music, we analyzed over 100 workout playlists across different workout types and genres.2 Pulling out the stats on BPM, energy, dance-ability, loudness, mood, and popularity, we’ve created the ultimate workout playlists based on our models and your favorite genres.

Here are our top findings:

  • Best workout track: boxing anthem Don’t Waste My Time by Krept & Konan.
  • Most common artist: Tiësto, appearing a whopping 112 times.
  • Most common workout track: Kanye West’s POWER, featuring 23 times.
  • Worst workout track: Radiohead’s No Surprises. It was the most distant track from our model.

Discover the perfect training playlists for you by trying our quiz:


General Workout

Our ‘General Workout’ category includes all types of exercise, whether it’s cardio, weightlifting, or an all-rounder gym session.

You won’t be surprised to find old favorites in here. From Rihanna to Kanye and Tiësto to Linkin Park, our general workout models included some well-known hits. With tracks like POWER & American Idiot, they’re universal no matter how you’re training.


General Workout: No Preferred Genre (all playlists)

Our General Workout: No Preferred Genre category covers every playlist that we investigated. The most popular song for general workout no preferred genre is POWER by Kanye West, which appeared in 23% of all workout playlists we analyzed. It also appeared as the most popular song in Weightlifting: Rap & General Workout: Rap playlists.

The most common artist for all workout playlists was Tiësto, who appeared 112 times in 100 playlists. Tiësto also performed as the most familiar artist in general workout EDM, cardio no genre & cardio EDM.

Our model track for your workout is Don’t Waste My Time by Krept & Konan. This track featured on Ryan Coogler’s Creed, where “Pretty” Ricky Conlan (played by former Cruiserweight Champion, Tony Bellew) walked out to the motivating track in the final scene. What boxing walkout song isn’t motivational, right?

Here’s your perfect playlist:

 


General Workout: Pop

Beyoncé is behind our most common pop workout song with Run the World (Girls). This track makes an appearance in 60% of the playlists in this category.

The most common artist for a general workout pop playlist is Rihanna. In ten playlists, Rihanna appeared 29 different times.

Based on our analysis, the surprise model track is Starships by Nicki Minaj. The song has an upbeat tempo, with a steady rhythm that’s sure to get you through any workout!

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

General Workout: Rock

Appearing in an overwhelming 80% of the playlists in this category, the most popular song for General Workout: Rock playlists was American Idiot by Green Day, which appeared in 80% of playlists.

The most common artist for general workout rock was Linkin Park. They managed to appear 43 times in ten rock workout playlists.

Our model track for you is Paradise City by Guns N’ Roses. We’re not too surprised to see this classic from rock pedigree Guns N’ Roses come out as our perfect rock anthem. With a repetition of bass and snare, this track maintains the kind of steady rhythm that you can bring out for any kind of training.

Here’s your perfect playlist:

 


General Workout: EDM

The most popular song in General Workout: EDM playlists is Heroes (we could be) by Alesso ft. Tove Lo. This track was so popular it appeared in all ten playlists included in this category. Not only that, Heroes appeared in 80% of the Cardio: EDM playlists as well!

The most common artist in General Workout: EDM playlists was Tiësto, appearing an impressive 103 times! You can’t go far into training soundtracks without seeing Tiësto, the most ubiquitous artist in all workout playlists, as he also appears as the most common artist for Cardio: EDM and Cardio: No Preferred Genre.

Our model track for you is Cold Water (feat. Justin Bieber) by Major Lazer. This hit is a great one to include in an amped-up workout playlist. It came out in our analysis matching the high Energy score for a model EDM track.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

General Workout: Rap

It’s hard not to find Kanye West in any workout playlist. The singer, songwriter, and entrepreneur appeared 99 times in ten General Workout: Rap playlists, making him the second most common artist in all workout playlists we analyzed. His track POWER was also the most commonly listed song in General Workout: Rap playlists, appearing in every one of them!

Our model track for you is V.3005 by Childish Gambino. This track has a fantastic bass and snare rhythm that’s continues throughout the song. This consistency makes it perfect for a workout track, with a tempo that has you moving in time with the record.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Cardio

Turn up the dial with our model tracks pulled from your favorite cardio-focused playlists. The average tempo for this type of workout is a little quicker than your more general training track, between 120-140 BPM, so you’ll be working hard to keep up.

The most common artist on cardio playlists Is Tiësto. The DJ appears 93 times in all the cardio playlists that we analyzed. Along with the Dutch DJ, artists like Rihanna, Eminem, and The Foo Fighters are all well-represented here.

As well as artists like these, hits like HUMBLE. By Kendrick Lamar to Heroes by Alesso, both appear as popular choices for cardio playlists. Whether you’re in the gym on the treadmill, stepping machine, stationary cycle or out in the elements, we’ve got your training covered.


 

Cardio: No Preferred Genre

The most common artist in Cardio: No Preferred Genre playlists was Tiësto, who appeared 93 times. From Ritual to God Is A Dancer, you’ll always see some Tiësto in workout playlists. If you are struggling to push yourself to the max, this Dutch DJ can help!

The most common song in Cardio: No Preferred Genre is non-other than Kanye West’s Stronger, which appeared in 100% of cardio no preferred genre playlists. Stronger is an excellent choice for your cardio playlist, and you don’t need to look further than “Harder Better Faster Stronger,” for the motivation you need to push yourself further.

Our model track for you is Ocean Drive by Duke Dumont. This track has an upbeat, energetic vibe that is perfect for implementing into your cardio workout. With a steady rhythm, this track is ideal to set the flow for your chosen cardio exercise.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


Cardio: Pop

Beyoncé features with the most popular song in Cardio: Pop playlists with Run the World (Girls). The track appeared in 50% of pop workout playlists.

The most common artist for the Cardio: Pop set was Rihanna, who appeared 26 times. Rihanna also made the most appearances in general workout pop playlist.

Our model track for you is Wild Ones (feat. Sia) by Flo Rida. At 130 BPM, this track is a great pacesetter. With high Energy and Valence/Mood, this track should also be kicking up the endorphins.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Cardio: Rock

There was no individual most common song for this playlist. Instead, we had a tie for number of appearances between American Idiot by Green Day and Another One Bites The Dust by Queen. Both appeared in 40% of Cardio: Rock playlists.

The most common artist in Cardio: Rock playlists were Foo Fighters, who had 21 tracks in ten cardio rock playlists.

Our model track for you is Bark At The Moon by Ozzy Osbourne. One of the legends in the rock game, Ozzy’s song is a great choice to help push you through your workout. With an incredibly high Energy level, this track will keep you switched on and powering through your workout.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Cardio: EDM

Just like our overall EDM playlist review, the most popular song amongst our Cardio: EDM playlists was Heroes (we could be) by Alesso ft. Tove Lo. This track was so popular it appeared in 80% of playlists in this category.

The most common artist in Cardio EDM playlists was Tiësto, featuring 88 times in ten playlists! This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, Tiësto is also our most common artist overall.

Believe it or not, Heroes (we could be) by Alesso ft. Tove Lo comes out as our model Cardio: EDM track. With a BPM of 126, this track matches the average for the category. Alesso uses the soft sound of a guitar in the background, which is perfectly calming for a cardio workout. With a catchy chorus, you’ll be singing this whilst enduring your cardio workout!

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Cardio: Rap

The most popular song for Cardio: Rap was HUMBLE. by Kendrick Lamar. Lamar’s HUMBLE. appeared in 60% of Cardio: Rap playlists. The appeal is obvious: during this track, Kendrick Lamar challenges his fellow rap artists to sit down, be humbler, and respect his position as one of the greatest in the genre.

The most common artist was none other than Eminem. He appeared 43 times in all Cardio: Rap playlists. Eminem has some of the most motivational tracks we’ve come across: Till I Collapse & Lose Yourself, which are both commonly found in workout/motivational playlists.

Our model track for you is Stronger by Kanye West. Stronger is a perfect workout track. The mantra “Harder Better Faster Stronger” is a good one to bear in mind as you push even harder to achieve their goals.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Weightlifting

Three Days Grace, Eminem, Kanye, and Zedd are all artists that appear in our weightlifting playlists. If you enjoy an upbeat, motivational weightlifting session, we’ve devised the perfect playlists for you. Enjoy songs like Ritual, POWER, and a hand pick of the popular tracks on these playlists.

No matter what routine you’re following our playlists have everything you need to motivate you through those sets and become a staple in your training ritual.

Weightlifting: No Preferred Genre

Both the most popular song & the most familiar artist for Weightlifting: No Preferred Genre was Eminem. He appeared 93 times in our weightlifting set. As well as this, his hit, Till I Collapse was the most common track which appeared in every single weightlifting playlist.

It’s a track made to push you to the limits, showing that you cannot give up, find the motivation you need within yourself, and remember why you started.

Our model track for you is The Monster by Eminem. “The Monster” could be your mental state, it could be your hardest workout yet.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Weightlifting: Pop

The most common artist in Weightlifting: Pop playlist is Eminem, who appeared 26 times in the ten weightlifting pop playlists we reviewed. The Missouri born rapper has migrated into the pop world with tracks like Love The Way You Lie and features from pop artists like Rihanna and more recently, Ed Sheeran. We crave the emotion and passion in his tracks, making him perfect for a motivational workout playlist.

The most popular song in weightlifting pop playlists is Gwen Stefani’s classic Hollaback Girl, which appeared in 30% of the playlists.

Our model track for you is Fancy by Iggy Azalea. With high energy levels of 72, you’ll be surprised by how the bass-heavy synth rhythm of this earworm can push you through your toughest workout sets.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Weightlifting: Rock

The most popular song in weightlifting rock playlists is, In the End by Linkin Park. The song appeared in 60% of weightlifting rock playlists.

The most common artist in weightlifting rock playlists is Three Days Grace, who appeared 41 times in the ten weightlifting rock playlists.

Our model track for you is Jungle by X Ambassadors. With a steady bass and snare throughout the record, Jungle is an excellent addition to your weightlifting playlist. It’s a track that keeps you calm and consistent – essential for those grueling routines.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Weightlifting: Rap

The most popular song and artist in Weightlifting: Rap playlists are Kanye West and his popular track POWER. We’ve seen POWER come out on top across multiple categories, but we can’t deny that it also seems like a perfect weightlifting track. Kanye’s track features in 80% of weightlifting rap playlists, which proves Kanye is an unavoidable figure when it comes to training anthems. He alone features a massive 69 times in weightlifting pop playlists, making him appear on average, six different times in each playlist.

Our model track for you: Alright by Kendrick Lamar. With a high level of Energy, this track is great to keep you pumping those weights. The record has also got a great Valence/Mood score to ensure that you stay motivated during your pump.

Here’s your perfect playlist:


 

Weightlifting: EDM

Follow your own rituals in the gym? Here’s a new one. The most common weightlifting EDM track was Ritual by Tiesto. This track appeared in 30% of weightlifting EDM playlists.

The most common artist in weightlifting EDM playlists is Zedd. The Russian DJ appeared 16 times in the ten weightlifting EDM playlists.

Our model track for you is Chasing Summers by Tiesto. The fast drum and bass rhythm will get you in the zone to tackle heavy volumes consistently.

Here’s your perfect playlist:

 

Take Home Message

Ultimately, we have used data to help users build a set of playlists and essential tracks that we hope could improve your training. Whether you’re following a setting off on a new routine or looking for a new element to incorporate into your fitness rituals we hope these tools can push your performance to the limit.


  1. http://sortyourmusic.playlistmachinery.com/
  2. Karageorghis, C. I. (2016). Applying Music in Exercise and Sport.


Josh Hunt

Josh Hunt

Writer

Josh has been involved in sports since a young age. Josh has a passion for football, playing for his local team from the age of 6 years old. He has recently used this passion to help motivate himself to create his own football club, specifically for him and his co-workers. Throughout the years he has developed an interest in boxing and MMA, which he loves to watch regularly.


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