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Durham University

Research & business

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Publication details for Dr Gretchen Larsen

Kerrigan, F., Larsen, G., Hanratty, S. & Korta, K. (2014). “Gimme Shelter” Experiencing Pleasurable Escape Through the Musicalisation of Running. Marketing Theory 14(2): 147-166.

Author(s) from Durham


This study examines the ubiquitous nature of music in the context of the running community. Data collected from an online running forum and a series of diary studies and interviews indicate that runners use mobile music technologies to create soundscapes in order to enhance their running experience. Our findings suggest that these soundscapes play an essential role in providing and supporting the experience of pleasurable escape when running. Through the musicalisation of running, people escape their humdrum existence, the Cartesian dualism of mind/body, the very act of running and the urban environment. This multifaceted manifestation of escape contributes to our understanding of hedonic and experiential consumption. These findings also challenge existing instrumental notions of performance-enhancing music consumption in sports activities and offer instead a complex, socially constructed musicalisation of running, which involves the remixing and reconfiguration of the aural landscape in an attempt to create the perfect running experience.