Singing and Well Being
Although we could not find sufficient quantitative data concerning group singing in adults aged 60 and older, we did locate some data points and additional key insights related to the subject. For example, research in Finland found choir singing seniors were 1.58 times more likely to indicate positive feelings concerning their overall well-being compared to those that do not sing in a choir.
Below you will find our research methodology and the insights we were able to obtain relating to choir singers aged 60 and older.
Our search for the requested quantitative data related to choir singing by older adults spanned academic databases like the National Institute of Health (NIH), government websites, trusted media, and corporate websites. While we did locate certain quantitative data points, these were isolated and not sufficient to build a comprehensive, robust research brief. We have included the quantitative data we located as well as some surrounding qualitative information.
It is worth noting that research funded by the NIH concerning effects on the well-being of singing in a choir on older adults recently finished and was published. In this study, several choirs for low-income seniors were funded in the San Francisco area. Researchers hoped to study the effects of choir singing on the health and well-being of the seniors involved. This study concluded in 2017 and the results exist behind a paywall. We have included this result based on the belief that much of the information desired can be found within those results.
Older Adult Choir Singers — Finland
In an NIH funded study conducted in Finland, the well-being of older adults was studied and compared to a control. The study released limited information to the public, the exceptions are just below.
— The participants in choirs were 1.58 times more likely to indicate a higher overall quality of life (QOL) than the control.
— Participants in a choir group have a 1.5-1.6 greater probability of higher satisfaction with their health and enhanced overall QOL. This elevated likelihood remains even after controlling for confounding factors such as engagement in hobbies and relevant sociodemographic elements.
In a study conducted in the United States on individuals age 65 and older, participants indicated that their choir activities provided them immense pleasure. Furthermore, the report on ABC states that taking part in a choir gave participants “a meaningful way to contribute to their own community.” Additionally, participants appreciated the added fun and entertainment gained in a choir like socializing with individuals with which they shared common interests.
We located two sources published in 2013 and elected to include them given their relevance to the topic and the lack of recent information. In the first, researchers indicated that the benefits of choir singing in older adults include making social connections, elevated self-confidence, singing skill refinement, and attaining music knowledge. The second study, conducted in Canada with adults over the age of 65, indicated the results found just below, obtained from RetireAtHome.com.
“-Improved Brain Functionality
-Improved Quality of Life
-Social Support and Networking
-Increased Positive Feelings”
We were unable to locate enough quantitative data to provide a comprehensive overview of the effects of choir participation on adults over the age of 60. However, we found qualitative information which demonstrates a positive impact on those studied.