There are many studies in the world today that correlate ballroom dancing with your health, it may keep you healthy well into aging by potentially reducing the risk of disability and dementia.
The greatest part of dancing for health is that dancing is FUN! It doesn’t have to be about competition, who can move the fastest, who has the best posture, you can simply take a dance lesson just to get moving.
Most forms of dance may be considered aerobic exercise and as such reduce the risk of heart disease, help weight control, reduce stress, and bring about other benefits commonly associated with physical fitness. Dance can appeal to those who may not be interested in extreme forms of physical fitness, it is widely a cultural form of expression where people are active without thinking about the benefits they are receiving.
Here are just a few benefits you receive physically from dance:
- Increases Balance
- Improves Flexibility
- Healthy Heart and Lungs
- Weight Loss
- Gentle on the body
For improved cardiovascular health, these guidelines are recommended:
- at least 150 minutes to 300 minutes per week of moderate-intensity exercise, or
- 75 minutes to 150 minutes per week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity
These are guidelines for general exercise requirements, but dancing is a great way to reach this goal. If you are doing a dance for fun, it is often much easier on the body than heavy weight training or long distance running for instance. The techniques taught in dance classes also relate to improved balance. Techniques taught in individual or group lessons increase body awareness and encourage low-impact landings. These techniques are useful for athletes and the aging population. The moves and routines that dancers are taught require elongated movements and full extensions which typically lead to less force on the body. Many athletes today participate in dance to improve their cognitive and physical abilities.
As studies continue to increase in in relating dance to health, it has been found that dance has many mental and social benefits as well. Dance has been proven to boost one’s memory, when you exercise, the chemicals in your brain encourage nerve cells to grow. You also must memorize various steps to your dance sequences which boosts your brain power. Dancing can incorporate several brain functions at once – kinesthetic, rational, musical, and emotional. Utilizing all at the same time can further increase your neural activity.
These days, many of us struggle in some form with mental health. It is easy to become consumed by the day to day mundane. Dance allows you to break free from your usual routine and have a “mental escape.” Studies show that recreational dancing leads to higher energy levels and people are less tense compared to those who dance competitively. Dancing allows you to be focused in the moment and enjoy being surrounded by others who are having a good time, therefore reducing stress.
Dance is a therapeutic way for people to transfer their feelings into a positive form of expression. Dance gives people an outlet for their emotions by connecting with the movements and music, expressing yourself with your body rather than your words.
As you continue to ballroom dance, you will notice that your confidence has grown. You will be surrounded by others who are most likely there for the same reasons you are, to enjoy the experience and relax. Dance classes are often done in group lessons which will force you to interact with others. If you did not bring a partner, you will be paired with someone else and this will force social interaction. Dance lessons are a great place to meet new people and create friendships! These group lessons are a safe and comfortable space to improve your social skills if necessary.
With the way dance has had an impact on people’s health, there are studies showing that dance may become a recommendation for some patients needing mental health assistance. Based on growing evidence, it is believed that dance can be used as part of holistic treatment for conditions such as Parkinson’s, chronic pain, dementia, autism, and mood disorders.
Perhaps the greatest thing about dance is that it has no age limit. No matter how old you are or how skilled you are, everyone has something to gain from dancing. Dance is accessible to all. Unlike other forms of exercise, there are no rules when it comes to dancing. So, come join us in Nashville for some group or individual dance lessons and let’s have some fun!