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Feel Good Fitness: The Benefits of Dancing

Nov 16, 2016 02:00PM ● By Cate Reynolds
By Becca Newell

From Dance Moms to America’s Best Dance Crew to Dancing with the Stars, it’s clear the dancing phenomena isn’t going anywhere—at least when it comes to reality television. As exciting as it is to tune in for the glitzy costumes and foot-tappin’ beats, why not consider incorporating a little movin’ and groovin’ into your own fitness routine with some jazzy choreography?

With classes suited to every skill level and style—think hip-hop, tap, ballroom, ballet, salsa, and even hula—it’s a fun way to get in a little cardio and muscle definition, even if you sport two left feet! Take a break from the gym and rather, in the words of T-Swift, “shake it off” in the studio.

The Benefits of Dancing

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are many health benefits to dancing the night away. A half hour of sustained dancing burns between 200 and 400 calories, depending on the distance covered across the dancefloor. The more vigorous a routine and the increased regularity of classes impacts cardiovascular conditioning, which leads to lower blood pressure and an improved cholesterol profile. Additionally, it’s been suggested that certain moves—particularly those side-to-side motions—help to strengthen various “weight-bearing bones,” like the fibula, tibia, and femur. Similarly, research within the Mayo Clinic suggests dancing promotes bone health and helps to fight osteoporosis.

Target Areas

Dancing is a full-body workout that focuses on improving one’s strength, aerobic capacity, and flexibility. From your legs to your core and arms, much of the choreography will engage various muscle groups depending on the steps and movements required. If you’re looking to amp up your cardio, opt for a fast-paced hip-hop class or intensive tap routine. If the social aspect of dancing is more appealing than its health benefits, check out a nearby ballroom dance class. For flexibility training, try a ballet class—barre exercises in particular emphasize stretching and muscle strengthening.

for a list of local adult dance classes Click Here.

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