The Rocky theme songs are referenced repeatedly in research on motivational music. For instance, in one 1995 study, two researchers asked pairs of runners who’d posted equal speeds in the past to compete against each other in the 60-meter dash. Before the athletes ran, however, one group stood in silence. The other group listened to the theme from Rocky on headphones. Afterward, the Rocky listeners ran faster. Their heartbeats were quicker, their muscles were tenser, and their anxiety was lower. Listening to just one minute of the Rocky theme song gave them a significant and systematic physiological advantage.