Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Dancing For Exercise.


I love to dance.  I've loved to dance since I was a child but I always associated it with ballet and modern dance.  I loved it so much that I took dance classes to fulfill my PE credits.  Unfortunately, I knew I'd never be a professional dancer since I'm too tall, too fat, and have wonky hips but for exercise, I can enjoy dance because I'm doing it for fun.

Dancing is a really good workout for the whole body.  It gets your heart going, improves balance, can make you sweat, and helps with coordination.  In fact, you will burn about the same number of calories in a 30 minute dance class as you do jogging.  Furthermore, there are so many choices from middle eastern dancing, to hip hop, to social dancing that you won't get bored.

Although dancing is classified as a medium intensity workout, it really depends on the type you choose.  You'll burn more calories doing a salsa as opposed to waltzing but the choreography will challenge and keep your brain active.

As stated earlier, dancing is good for the whole body but the parts it effects depends on the type of dance.  It can engage the core muscles, help the arms since you are usually holding them in certain positions or moving them in a pattern, work your lower body muscles including quads and ham strings, engage the gluten, and use your back muscles.  In addition, since it uses your own body weight, it helps your bone density which is important as you age.

Furthermore, dance and dance inspired workouts help with flexibility, raise your heart beat, builds muscles  through the use of your own body weight, and is either a low or high impact depending on the type of dance chosen. After a good session,  you feel better because it causes your body to release endorphins. It can be done at home, in a studio, or outdoors depending on the type of dance and if you are taking lessons.

Dancing also helps improve your blood circulation, works towards controlling cholesterol and sugar levels in the blood.  It also helps reduce stress levels which in turn helps your blood pressure.  The music itself is great for motivating people to move their bodies.  It is hard not to move when there is a great beat going.  If you dance in a class or dance group, it allows for more socialization.

Over the years, I've collected a bunch of dance videos because I've spent a lot of time working in places with no dance studios, no dance classes, nothing.  I usually end up popping a video in to follow or I throw on a CD and just dance to the music free style.  I love the 50's and 60's because most tunes have a solid beat that is easy to follow. When I dance at home, I don't compare myself to others.  I am the star of my own show but when I finally move back to a large enough place, I might just start lessons again.  

You don't have to have CD's because there is youtube or the radio to find danceable music or even lessons on hip hop, African, middle eastern, swing, and so many others.  Give it a chance if you've never done it before.  Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.  Have a great day.

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