In the New Year, dance can be a great way to try something new or return to a joyful part of your past. It can even be a new way to go about your resolution. It doesn’t need to be about fitness for you to resolve to dance. Dance goes far beyond physical results. The benefits are plentiful at any age and stay with you in years to come.
Physically speaking, dance is a low impact, aerobic activity in which you set the pace – beginner to advance. Your level and the style of dance will get your heart rate up differently therefore the calories you burn will range from 250 to 500 per hour. When done with commitment, it’s a great way to lose or maintain weight, improve performance in other physical activities, build stamina and energize your daily routine. Every muscle group will strengthen and tone as a result of dancing. Stronger front and back abdominal muscles improve posture and prevent back pain. You will gain coordination, balance and flexibility. Flexibility eases joint pain, stiffness and overall reduces soreness caused by working out. It’s built in to dance versus an afterthought.
Dance, like other aerobic activities, lowers the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, and depression. Unlike the others though, dance lowers the risk of dementia. In class, the student watches and imitates the teacher. They listen and apply verbal instructions as well. Each class is full of new steps that the student builds upon in future classes. As a result, regular classes sharpen memory skills. The combination of dance and music has even triggered specific memories in people with Alzheimer’s.
Dance and music combined can be memory and mood sparking in us all. Therefore, dance is credited for rekindling romance between partners, bridging gaps between generations, and provides a cultural education. Dance will better a mood faster then doing a physical activity or listening to music separately. Also, you are not alone in your efforts but surrounded by other people, creating opportunities to build friendships.
You may not be confident walking into your first class. You may not yet feel the relief of stress as you walk into your first class either. Nevertheless, be assured dance will build your overall confidence, self-esteem and reduce your stress. It can even sharpen communication skills between partners. Ballroom is not just for partners though. Adult classes geared towards individuals include ballroom, ballet and Zumba for example.
In Sandusky County there are multiple ways to dance throughout the year. At Ballet Academy of Fremont I offer ballet and ballroom. Also in the heart of the county, Zumba is everywhere! For example, the YMCA, UAW Hall, Fremont Recreational Center and Terra State Community College all offer this dance fitness class. In the winter there is line dancing at ‘Ole Zim’s’ Wagon Shed in Gibsonburg. May you have a Happy New Year filled with dancing and all it implies.
Posted on Wed, December 31, 2014
by Heidi Vander Boon