One of the greatest benefits of dance is that it is a cardiovascular workout that aids in flexibility.
For Mind, Body, and Spirit!
We've all heard it before many times: to stay healthy we need at least 30 minutes of continuous activity, three or four times a week. Well, Ballroom, Latin, Swing, and other types of social partner dancing are fun and easy ways to achieve that!
An evening of dancing gets your heart rate up which helps increase cardiovascular health. The repetition of movement helps improve muscle tone and build strength – especially in your legs and torso. The side-to-side movements of many dances, such as Swing or Nightclub 2-Step, strengthen your weight bearing bones which can help prevent osteoporosis.
Dancing burns as many calories as swimming, cycling, or walking! Just 30 minutes can burn between 200 to 400 calories. Just think of what a whole night of dancing can do for you – it is a great alternative to aerobics or jogging!
Learning to dance helps improve flexibility, coordination, and agility – and it increases confidence! You'll develop body-awareness as you learn to control your balance and increase comfort in maneuvering yourself. Learning how your body moves — and its limits — can help you understand yourself better and find greater confidence.
Dancing requires your attention, taking you away from the stresses of your day. Paying attention to your partner, listening to the music, and focusing on leading or following will push aside all other thoughts. This need to think about your action and movement also challenges you mentally and can help keep your mind sharp.
If you need to exercise or escape stress, what better way is there?
And let's not forget that partner dancing is a social activity, allowing you to build strong ties with others, which contributes to self-esteem and a positive outlook. Plus, it’s nice to have a bunch of friends to go out with to have some good clean fun! And, if you are single, getting involved in partner dancing is a good way to build a fulfilling and exciting social life.
Social Partner Dancing provides us with many physical, mental, and social benefits.
But it is also and emotional outlet where you can express your feelings through movement.
We all have the ability to dance. – we only need to be nurtured through the learning process with an experienced instructor. After that, you get to spread your wings and express yourself!
We are all students of Life as well as Dance
Social Partner Dancing...
. . . develops self confidence, self esteem, patience, and a sense of accomplishment.
. . . teaches us to be patient with ourselves and others.
– We are all allowed to be human
– We are all allowed to make mistakes (even the teacher!)
. . . keeps us connected to our inner child and playfulness.
. . . teaches us how to be in the moment.
. . . helps us learn to set aside our egos while we learn something new.
. . . teaches us how to have FUN, even while learning something new.
. . . allows us to conquer social and physical fears.
. . . helps us to become more comfortable and connected with our own bodies.
. . . helps us integrate all levels of who we are.
John's Personal Pedometer Study
Several years ago, John did a personal study on the exercise aspect of this wonderful form of movement, known as ballroom dancing, by wearing a pedometer for one week during all his private lessons and group classes.
When all was said and done, the total number of miles moved during that one week period divided by the total hours danced revealed that
the average speed of his dancing clocked-in at 1.1 miles per hour. Not bad at all for an enjoyable, smooth, and social form of exercise!
A typical day for John is about 6 to 8 hours of dancing. That means on average, in just one day, he has managed the equivalent of a 6 to 8 miles walk! Granted, many of the dances rack-up more miles than others because of their tempo, size of step, etc., but in the long-run the slower dances balance that out.
A Harvard Study on Aging and Exercise published in the 1999 issue of The British Medical Journal, found that vigorous exercise actually leads to a 2.5 year reduction in life expectancy, while social interaction, going places, and having fun contributed to a longer and healthier life.
Dance = Exercise
Ballroom dancing is certainly a non-vigorous form of exercise and is a fantastic way to socialize and to have fun!!
Dance in the News
Dance Tones and Strengthens Muscles
Researchers report that dancing the waltz three times a week for 2 months is just as effective as exercising on a treadmill or bicycle for the same time-period. American-style waltz is great for toning and strengthening muscles and has perks that a run on the treadmill doesn't: waltzers get to exercise in an elegant setting, with pleasant music – and they don't have to towel someone else's sweat from a chrome machine.
Dance Relieves Stress
Italian researchers have found that just 21 minutes of dancing, three times a week, can match the cardiovascular benefits from working out on a treadmill or bicycle. It is aerobic and isometric using movements which help the arms, legs, and torso. Proper dance posture gets the blood flowing and makes you breathe a little deeper – an instant stress reliever! Read Now