What’s the Most Popular Music for Strength Training in 2024?

Strength training is one of the year’s biggest fitness trends. From CNN to GQ to NPR (specifically focused on the benefits for women), there’s increased visibility for the many ways strength/weight training supports health and longevity. As the B2B music partner for the world’s biggest fitness brands, we’re experienced in curating soundtracks for every type of workout. And we want everyone to experience the proven benefits of music.

So what does the data say? What is the most popular music for strength training in 2024? We drilled into 27 million songs that were streamed over the first 4 months of 2024 on our customers’ strength training apps to answer this question. 

We also considered why these songs and artists are good for strength training, based on both the science and our curation expertise.

 

Most popular strength training songs (partial reveal)

 

Ice Spice performing at Soundcloud Next Wav Brooklyn. Photographed and filmed by Keinoflo. CC 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Photo credit: Ice Spice performing at Soundcloud Next Wav Brooklyn. Photographed by Keinoflo. CC 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

 

Top 5 songs of 2024

  1. Vampire by Olivia Rodrigo
  2. Players by Coi Leray
  3. Industry Baby by Lil Nas X feat. Jack Harlow
  4. Superhero (Heroes & Villains) by Metro Boomin w/ Future & Chris Brown
  5. Deli by Ice Spice

For starters, it’s clear hip-hop pairs well with strength training. This isn't surprising, because we don’t need the four-on-the-floor, dance-oriented songs preferred for synchronous cardio workouts. Scratch below the surface and you’ll find a broad variety of hip-hop-–from the retro-pop stylings of Leray to a triumphant MC tag-team to Metro Boomin’s claustrophobic, chilly trap to a minimalist, aggressive drill miniature. Plus a musical tour-de-force from Rodrigo, one of today’s biggest pop stars. Besides hip-hop, one unifying component of these songs is their energetic delivery.

 

Songs 6-10 of 2024

   6. Pretty Please by Jackson Wang & Galantis
   7. Astronaut in the Ocean by Masked Wolf
   8. Woman by Doja Cat
   9. Essence by WizKid feat. Justin Bieber & Tems
 10. Mood by 24Goldn feat. Iann Dior

The plot thickens: this is a somewhat strange assortment of songs. We still get hip-hop, in the largest sense of what this genre encompasses. EDM enters the scene via Galantis, a ‘21 one-hit-wonder continues to hit hard, Doja Cat shape-shifts into reggae, a fluid Afrobeats song gets the Bieber treatment, and a second early-pandemic banger fuses pop and trap. Mostly energetic delivery, even if stylistically it’s a bit all over the place. What’s going on here?

 

The ABC of Music in Exercise Feed.fm white paper cover

Science of music in exercise (a brief detour)

When it comes to the science of music in exercise, all paths lead to Professor Costas Karageorghis, PhD, CPsychol, CSci, FBASES, AFBPsS, and Sport & Exercise Psychology professor at Brunel University London. Our company has been following his groundbreaking research for a decade, and we were excited to publish a 2022 white paper written by Karageorghis.

 

For strength training music, here’s the science you need to know:


  • “A key role of music is to elevate [emotion] and lower the exerciser’s perception of exertion. Music can temper the shift toward displeasure that is unavoidable during intense forms of exercise.”

  • “When exposed to music, an exerciser will experience a shift in attention from internal, bodily-related cues to the pleasurable external cue that music provides. The shift can be explained by the limited capacity of the afferent nervous system, which transmits sensory impulses toward the central nervous system.”

  • “This shift is linked with a ~10% reduction in perceived exertion during exercise at low-to-moderate intensity.”

  • “Even during high-intensity exercise, music can elicit more positive [emotion].”

 

TL:DR = “The right music is a feel-good stimulus that can increase work output while simultaneously reducing perceived exertion.”

 

 

Top 20 Strength Training Songs Playlist & Favorite Artists

Here are the complete Top 20 Strength Training Songs of 2024. As you’ll see, Songs 11-20 broaden to encompass more hip-hop tracks in various styles, pop hits, additional EDM, and some of the four-on-the-floor songs pair so well with cardio.

 

Listen to the full playlist

 

We also analyzed the Top 100 strength training songs streamed this year for any artist trends. This yielded 3 standout artists with the most tracks.

  1. Doja Cat with 6 songs (“Woman,” “Best Friend” w/ Saweetie, “Scoop” w/ Lil Nas X, “Need to Know,” “Like That” w/ Gucci Mane, “Streets (Disclosure Remix)”
  2. Justin Bieber with 5 songs (“Essence” w/ WizKid & Tems, “Hold On,” “Stay” w/ The Kid Laroi, “Ghost,” “Wandered to LA” w/ Juice Wrld)
  3. Lil Nas X with 4 songs (“Industry Baby” w/ Jack Harlow, “Scoop” w/ Doja Cat, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name,” “Star Walkin’ (League of Legends Worlds Anthem)”)

 

Branded Stock_Fitness-2-2

 

Selecting Great Strength Training Music

Here’s one more finding from Professor Karageorghis’ research, which helps explain the stylistic diversity of our Top 20 Strength Training Songs:

“It is advantageous for the rhythm of the music to approximate the motor patterns that typify a given type of exercise activity” - Professor Costas Karageorghis

In contrast to the sustained, highly repetitive physical movement of cardio, the motor patterns of strength training are often stop-and-start, with periods of intense force followed by brief respite. Viewed through this lens of “motor compatibility,” strength training is uniquely suited to an eclectic workout music soundtrack.

Tying it all together, here are tips for selecting great strength training music:

  • Include a breadth of high-energy, vocal-powered tracks such as those found in our Top 20 Strength Training Songs.
  • Allow for ample peaks and valleys, both within songs and across the contrasting songs of an appropriately varied music playlist.
  • Play with the verbal dexterity and intensity of hip-hop, in all its wonderful incarnations.
  • Choose songs with energetic delivery, regardless of BPM, and not necessarily sustained at the same level throughout (as exemplified by our #1 song, “Vampire”).
  • Pick artists like Doja Cat and Lil Nas X, musical chameleons who excel at producing diverse post-genre pop songs. Or Justin Bieber, who earns props for recent releases in contrasting styles.

 

Hero_Workout Compliation_Genres

Pump it up

You may not follow today’s pop charts, in which case these specific songs and artists aren’t necessarily relevant. That said, whether you regularly pump iron or are introducing a few bodyweight exercises to your routine, you’ll definitely benefit from music. Select energetic vocal-powered songs from your favorite artists, prioritizing the variety that’s useful for this exercise type. Or just push play on our certified playlist of the Top 20 Strength Training Songs.

 

Interested in getting professionally curated music for your fitness or wellness business? Talk to a Feed.fm music specialist. 

TALK TO A MUSIC SPECIALIST