asian woman practising her dance moves

Dancing isn’t just something you can do for fun; it’s an activity that has plenty of health benefits. Most types of dance involve some sort of cardiovascular activity, which increases stamina and strengthens muscles. Dancing is also a social activity, whether you’re in a room full of people or with a partner, it can help to lift one’s spirits and encourage the formation of social ties and deeper bonds with others.

Related: 5 Local Games to Bring You Back in Time

Dancing is Good for Mind and Body

asian elderly couple dancing together

1. Improved fitness levels

Dancing has a wide range of physical benefits. These include improved muscular strength, coordination, flexibility, increased aerobic fitness and spatial awareness, to name a few. Many types of dancing are full body workouts, where you utilise majority of your muscle groups, unlike when you’re working out at the gym. This is a great way to effectively manage weight and improve cardiovascular health. Regular dancing as part of your exercise regime will also result in a boost in energy levels, allowing you to perform better at work.

2. Improved mood and mental health

The psychological benefits of dancing are numerous. This includes improved mood, greater self-confidence and self-esteem, as well as improved social skills. The complex mental and physical coordination helps to boost memory and brain function, which may guard your mind against developing dementia as you age. The act of dancing itself also induces the production of natural antidepressants such as endorphins in your body that aids in stress relief, which helps keep psychological illnesses such as depression and anxiety at bay.

Dancing can also be particularly helpful in improving social skills as it is usually performed in a group setting or with a partner. Seeing others overcome their shyness or insecurities can aid in you overcoming your own issues. Dancing in a group or with a partner where physical contact is made enhances the experience of fellowship and helps people forge deeper ties with one another.

These following types of dance classes are a great way to get started:

K-pop dance classes are ever-popular and involve learning dance moves made popular by Korean bands. If you’ve ever had a dream of dancing like your favourite Korean superstars, why not live it out? K-pop dance can be highly aerobic depending on the intensity level of each particular routine. Round up your pals and start your own K-pop dance group.

Related: Tired of Always Running the Same Route? Try GPS Doodling

young asian girl dancing in a studio while her friends watch in the background 

Street dance is a type of dance that evolved outside of dance studios and usually involves improvisation of several other dance styles. The fluidity of street dancing allows you to incorporate your own flavour of movement into any routine, giving you free reign for self-expression. Many dance instructors encourage freestyling  a variety of hip-hop, funk and house dance moves.

close up of two salsa dancers

Salsa is a popular form of social dance that originated in Cuba. Salsa dance classes require performing a series of moves with a partner and it’s a great way to get your spouse or friends involved. The dance can get vigorous and involves working out special muscle groups that you may not typically use while walking or running.

Zumba is a dance fitness programme created by Colombian dancer Alberto Perez. It involves dance and aerobic movements performed to upbeat music. A Zumba programme can incorporate several other styles of dancing such as hip-hop, mambo, merengue, and salsa. Many Zumba instructors also add in several fitness movements such as push-ups, squats and plyometric jumps. An hour of Zumba can burn up to 500 calories and can help improve total body fitness and coordination.

Dancing is a great way to kick start or add to your exercise regime, but remember to perform adequate warm up and cool down exercises to prevent injury, muscle strain or soreness. If you haven’t exercised in a long time or have previous injuries, it may be wise to get your doctor’s advice on your physical limitations before commencing on any exercise regime. 

If you're thinking of joining a dance class, why not join us for a series of FREE dance workouts near your workplace or your home? For more information, check out the​ HealthHub Get Active Programme​.


Read these next:


References

  1. Dance Fitness & Weight Loss Program. (n.d.). Fitness Health 101.
    Retrieved March 2017 from http://www.fitnesshealth101.com/fitness/weight-loss/programs/dance

  2. Ladock, J. (n.d.). Health Benefits of Dance. Health Guidance.
    Retrieved March 2017 from http://www.healthguidance.org/entry/10409/1/Health-Benefits-of-Dance.html

  3. The Many Health Benefits of Dancing. (2014, Nov 20). Berkeley Wellness.
    Retrieved March 2017 from http://www.berkeleywellness.com/fitness/active-lifestyle/article/many-health-benefits-dancing

  4. The Social Benefits of Dance. (n.d.). Dancing Through Parkinson.
    Retrieved March 2017 from http://www.dancingthroughparkinson.com/the-social-benefits-of-dance-2/

  5. Top 10 Health Benefits of Zumba. (2015, Apr 10). Health Fitness Revolution.
    Retrieved March 2017 from http://www.healthfitnessrevolution.com/top-10-health-benefits-zumba/