The Health Benefits of Dancing -- Including Specific Benefits of Different Dances
If you secretly sashay across your living room when you're home alone or long to cha-cha with your significant other, you're in luck. Not only is dancing an exceptional way to let loose and have fun, but it also provides some terrific benefits for your health.
In fact, Mayo Clinic researchers reported that social dancing helps to:
• Reduce stress
• Increase energy
• Improve strength
• Increase muscle tone and coordination
Dancing the night away can burn more calories per hour than riding a bike or swimming.
And whether you like to kick up your heals to hip hop, classical or country, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) says that dancing can:
• Lower your risk of coronary heart disease
• Decrease blood pressure
• Help you manage your weight
• Strengthen the bones of your legs and hips
Dancing is a unique form of exercise because it provides the heart-healthy benefits of an aerobic exercise while also allowing you to engage in a social activity. This is especially stimulating to the mind, and one 21-year study published in the New England Journal of Medicine even found dancing can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia in the elderly.
In the study, participants over the age of 75 who engaged in reading, dancing and playing musical instruments and board games once a week had a 7 percent lower risk of dementia compared to those who did not. Those who engaged in these activities at least 11 days a month had a 63 percent lower risk!
Interestingly, dancing was the only physical activity out of 11 in the study that was associated with a lower risk of dementia. Said Joe Verghese, a neurologist at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a lead researcher of the study, "This is perhaps because dance music engages the dancer's mind."
Verghese says dancing may be a triple benefit for the brain. Not only does the physical aspect of dancing increase blood flow to the brain, but also the social aspect of the activity leads to less stress, depression and loneliness. Further, dancing requires memorizing steps and working with a partner, both of which provide mental challenges that are crucial for brain health.
How Good of a Workout is Dancing, Really?
The amount of benefit you get from dancing depends on, like most exercises, the type of dancing you're doing, how strenuous it is, the duration and your skill level.
Says exercise physiologist Catherine Cram, MS, of Comprehensive Fitness Consulting in Middleton, Wisconsin, "Once someone gets to the point where they're getting their heart rate up, they're actually getting a terrific workout. Dance is a weight-bearing activity, which builds bones. It's also "wonderful" for your upper body and strength."
Most people agree that social dancing gives them a more positive outlook on life.
Plus, dancing requires using muscles that you may not even know you had.
"If you're dancing the foxtrot, you're taking long, sweeping steps backwards. That's very different than walking forward on a treadmill or taking a jog around the neighborhood ... Ballroom dancing works the backs of the thighs and buttock muscles differently from many other types of exercise," says Ken Richards, professional dancer and spokesman for USA Dance, the national governing body of DanceSport (competitive ballroom dancing).
Specific Benefits of Different Dances
If you're looking for specific health results, here's a breakdown of the benefits of some popular dances. Just remember that any type of dancing is better than no dancing at all!
• Improved posture and muscle toning
• Maintains flexibility
• Helps prevent lower back problems
• Tones and firms arms and shoulders
• Helps with weight loss
• Helps prepare women for childbirth
• Reduces stress
• Conditions the body
• Helps keep the heart in shape
• Builds and increases stamina
• Develops the circulatory system
• Strengthens and tones legs and body
• Increases flexibility and balance
• Helps with weight loss
• Relieves stress
• Builds endurance and stamina
• Helps with weight loss
• Relieves stress
• Helps you release toxins via sweating
• May help lower blood pressure and improve cholesterol levels
• Can lead to a reduced heart rate over time
• Provides cardiovascular conditioning
• May lead to a slower heart rate, lower blood pressure and an improved cholesterol profile
• Strengthens bones
• Helps you develop strong social ties
• Loosens and tones muscles
Physical benefits aside, dancing has a way of brightening up a person's day, says ballroom owner and operator Karen Tebeau.
"A lot of times, when people come into the studio, it's because there's been a change in their life: a divorce or they've been through a period of depression. They (continue) coming in, and you see a big change. After a while, they're walking in with a sunny expression. You know it's the dancing that's doing that," she says.
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Let's get all this 'good for the earth' rain out of the way and then order up a dry & mild weekend on the rock just in time for the long weekend festivities! We'll be on Holiday Schedule - Please note no circuit training Saturday and no child minding on Victoria Day Monday.
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There are so many reasons / excuses for why not to take class, or why not to exercise. If that's you today and you need some extra motivation / reassurance, just email, call us, FB us...we have that whole commitment thing DOWN!
'No Excuses' (Warhawk Matt Scott in Nike Commercial) Inspirational!
http://robbcorbett.com/848/weekly-motivational-movie-matt-scott-in-no-excuses-nike-commercial/ This is a very powerful, motivating and inspirational video. P...
Town of Sidney Launches Five Level 2 Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and First All Electric Fleet Vehicle
The Town of Sidney is pleased to announce the availability of five Level 2 Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations, as well as, unveiling the newest addition to the Town of Sidney’s corporate fleet, a Nissan Leaf, which is a 100% emission-free electric vehicle.
The public is invited to the EV Charging Station launch on Thursday May 16th at 3:00pm at the 90 amp EV charging station at the corner of Third Street and Bevan Avenue, with Mayor and Council in attendance.
The Town of Sidney is embracing the transition to Electric Vehicle infrastructure, and has installed five EV charging stations (EVCS). Four of the charging stations are for public use; one at Town Hall (25 amp); Tulista Park (40 amp); 9751 Third Street parking lot (90 amp); and Iroquois Park (40 amp). One EVCS is at the Public Works yard to charge Town fleet vehicles. There is no cost to use the charging stations (100 kilometers costs approximately 95 cents) although fees may apply in the future.
EV charging stations (for automobiles and Ebikes) are registered on the EVCS locator website, Plugshare.com, and are also accessible by GPS. These new public EV charging stations bring the total EVCS in Sidney to 15, which will support residents and visitors in making environmentally friendly transportation choices, and reduce GHG emissions within the Town of Sidney.
Leading by example to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG), the Town of Sidney has also added a zero-emission Nissan Leaf, to its vehicle fleet. The Leaf replaces a 14 year old gas vehicle, and moves Sidney towards creating a more sustainable corporate fleet.
“I am proud to say that Sidney has become a leader in implementing green technologies. Province wide, we have more EV charging stations than any other community of a similar size. Through the Town’s Climate Action Plan, we are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Installation of these EV charging stations, and the purchase of a 100% electric vehicle will help us to achieve our goals,” stated Mayor Larry Cross.
The Town received a grant through the Provincial Community Charging Infrastructure (CCI) Fund, which provided 75% of the cost of installing the five Level 2 charging stations. The CCI Fund is a $2.74 million program supporting the installation of 570 public charging stations across BC. Also, the Town received a $5000 rebate towards the cost of the Nissan Leaf from the Clean Energy Vehicle program.
Additionally, the Town of Sidney achieved carbon neutrality in 2012, in part, through the purchase of carbon offsets from Pacific Carbon Trust, as its commitment to the BC Climate Action Charter, and the Town’s Climate Action Plan.
For More Information Contact:
Marlaina Elliott, MCIP
Director of Development Services
Town of Sidney