The Importance of Play



“A little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal.”

                                                                    – Oscar Wilde

Last week, Bill brought a bit of St. Patrick’s Day fun to Spynergy, throwing a little party with Guinness as a post-class reward.  Fun is part of our mantra here at Spynergy, and if you’ve been to a class, you know how that fun feels.  But what you might not know is how psychologically and physically important it is to have fun – to play – as an adult.


As George Bernard Shaw said, “we don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” Studies have shown that laughter and play help relieve physical pain, bring us happiness shovelin other areas of our lives, and increases immunity. Laughter reduces our levels of stress hormones (cortisol, epinephrine, dopamine and others) and increases hormones that boost health, like endorphins. Playing creates a stronger immune system, enhancing overall effectiveness of T cells by increasing our number of antibody-producing cells.


On days when you’re thinking that you’re just too busy at work to take time out for a Spin® class, think about this: research has shown that playing and having fun make you more creative, and increase your productivity. In fact, when adults play, the areas of the brain that increase mental clarity and memory light up.


In his Ted Talk on the importance of play for adults, Dr. Stuart Brown, founder of the National Institute for Play, explains that having fun is not just enjoyable, it’s essential.  “Nothing lights up the brain like play,” he says, going on to discuss play’s role in intelligence, social and emotional development, creativity and longevity.


There aren’t a lot of Spin® studios where you’ll laugh (while working harder than you thought possible) during an indoor cycling class, have your instructor pouring pints of Guinness after class, or whose Facebook page will showcase a photo of a shovel to make you laugh (so that you won’t cry) at the end of an endless winter. Join us at Spynergy this week, and light up your creative brain, improve your memory and immunity, and…have FUN!


Spynergy has provided indoor cycling classes to the communities of Wellesley, Needham, Natick, Wayland, Weston, Chestnut Hill and the greater Boston area since 2005.  Come ride with us for a great workout, great music and lots of fun!