Dancing traces back through centuries and can be considered the original and natural way to stay fit just moving to the beat and flow of the music; to lose yourself in its pulse and vibration! In ancient Greece the ‘choros’ (which translates to ‘dance’ in Greek) was performed as an honour to a god; in ancient India the hand movements of the priestesses in Hindu temples can be described as an aesthetic kind of dance with each gesture having its own graceful and and subtle yet definite signature. Here we’re gonna embrace the vibe and get into the groove of 5 Top Reasons to Dance Yourself Fit!
Dancing is a celebration, an expression of vitality and freedom; the charm of dancing is that it is unique and exclusive to each individual and the way you move to it becomes your own celebration of life. In more recent times dancing for fitness became mainstream through the 1980’s with the explosion of aerobics classes (Jane Fonda style) hitting many gyms and dance studios; since then it has evolved into many different dance fitness classes that we see today, such as Zumba, and other branded dance workouts…so without further ado…
1. It’s the ultimate mood lifter – it’s ‘feel good’ fitness!
When you listen to music you love or enjoy, it triggers an instinctual and emotional response; your body just wants to move and connect to the sound it feels. Dancing unifies your heart, mind, and body so you feel its benefits running right through you. It dissipates stress and elevates your mind as the ‘happy hormones’ (endorphins and serotonin) give you a great big hug!
How it began – 1980’s Aerobics Championships. (Do you recognise any of these faces? Where are they now? Please let us know if you do!)
2. It’s great for your heart and bone health!
Traditional cardiovascular or weight based machines are limited in movement arcs, but there are no limits when you dance! The ranges of movement in dance fitness are as diverse and endlessly creative as you and your body are, blended together in a way that gets your heart and body working to its full movement potential where you aren’t hampered to the settings of a machine. Dancing for fitness reminds you that your body is actually a ‘machine’ of its own.
3. But…I can’t dance!
Many people avoid dancing or dance fitness classes because they feel they don’t have the coordination but dancing is actually one of the best mechanisms you inherently have for improving your motor skills and rhythm. Studies have shown that incorporating different coordinated patterns or manoeuvres into your fitness can reduce the risk of dementia by as much as 76%! Dancing is like chemistry, you have your own formula so bring the elements of energy, fun and adventure together, shake them up and see what happens -celebrate!
4. It creates ‘fusion’ and merges people together
There is openness and a subtle intimacy when you dance with groups of people, you lose yourself in the fun factor and find others on the same wavelength as you. A sense of companionship is built through the social aspect and tempo of dance fitness, find your tribe!
5. It burns calories!
Dancing for fitness has great calorie burning potential and the secret lies in the execution and drive of each move. Generally you can scorch between 5-10 calories per minute, sounds good eh? As with all exercise, it all depends on your level of effort and passion for it…switch the steps up in your own special way. Dancing relies on your dynamism and enthusiasm, so have fun and tune into and get your own dance mode ON!
“Great dancers are not great because of their technique; they are great because of their passion. Dance is the hidden language of the soul of the body.” –Martha Graham (Recognized as one of the greatest artists of the 20th century she created a movement language based upon the expressive capacity of the human body) So turn on your favourite music, get into your groove, let go, and dance yourself fit!