17 Health Benefits Of Dancing: Physical, Psychological and Wellness
There is over 250 forms of dance in the world. From Latin dancing to Ballroom dancing to Disco and clubbing or to African Dances.
What is dance use for? Dance is a form of expression and communication, a way to connect to others or also express our views about social issues, political issues or everyday life experiences (such as heartbreaks and love stories). Dance is also a form of cultural expression and representation for a country (What Cuban Salsa is to Cubans people for example), a ritual (Can be religious such as the influence of the Orishas in rumba Cubana dance), or come as a form of celebration and parties (the origin of Dominican bachata).
Dance is for Everyone. From toddlers to seniors and elderly, there is benefits to dance for each age groups.
Dance is fun, pleasurable and a gratifying way to be physically active, stay fit and mentally sharp and healthy while maintaining a good balance between wellness, exercising, Socialising and physical development.
Table of Contents
17 Health benefits of Dancing
1. Improves Cardiovascular health
Cardiovascular health, in a medical point of view, refers to the state or condition of having a healthy cardiovascular system, which includes the heart (pumping oxygenated blood to the whole body and deoxygenated blood to the lungs), blood vessels (arteries, veins and capillarities), and blood circulation (A vital fluid consisting of red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, and plasma. It transports oxygen, nutrients, hormones, and waste products throughout the body)
When dancing, you exercise and add movement to your life. This physical activity can be gentle or more intense (becoming a great cardio workout) to the body and activate your cardiovascular system. When moving and exercising, your heart will have to pump a lot more oxygen in a more efficient way to the body through the blood vessels and increase blood circulation, resulting in a healthier Cardiovascular health, immune system and overall health.
Dancing improves your circulatory system health and strengthen your heart and blood vessels health by encouraging and developing the following 6 attributes:
Strengthens the Heart: Exercise helps make the heart stronger by challenging it to pump blood more efficiently.
Reduces Blood Pressure: Regular exercise can help lower high blood pressure, a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases. Physical activity such as dancing helps improve the elasticity of blood vessels and promotes better blood flow, reducing the strain on the arteries.
Increases HDL Cholesterol: Exercise helps increase high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, also known as “good” cholesterol. HDL cholesterol helps remove low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, or “bad” cholesterol, from the arteries, reducing the risk of plaque buildup and blockages.
Improves Blood Circulation: Exercise promotes better blood circulation throughout the body. Dance as a physical activity increases the number and size of blood vessels, enhancing the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the muscles and organs.
Manages Weight: Regular exercise helps in weight management or weight loss, which is crucial for cardiovascular health. Maintaining a healthy weight reduces the risk of heart diseases, diabetes, and other conditions that can strain the cardiovascular system.
Reduces Inflammation: Chronic inflammation can damage blood vessels and increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Exercise helps reduce inflammation in the body, improving overall cardiovascular health.
Research from the American Journal of Preventive Medicine also shown that people who engage in moderate-intensity dance exercise or practice are 46% less likely to develop a heart disease.
2. Builds Core Strength
Core strength refers to the muscular strength and stability of the muscles in the torso, including the abdomen, back, hips, and pelvis. It encompasses the deep muscles of the core, such as the transverse abdominis, obliques, multifidus, and pelvic floor muscles, as well as the superficial muscles like the rectus abdominis and erector spinae.
The core is a group of muscles in the torso and part of the human body that stabilizes and controls the pelvis and spine. The word “Strength” associated with core is not used to represent power but refers to the ability of a person to maintain hiis or her body in a certain position or ideal position. The most common exercise associated to building core strength is the “plank exercise”, followed by dance as a sport activity.
Dance embodies the art of movement and the expression of emotions, relying on a foundation of strong core balance and core strength.
When you dance, you effortlessly navigate through all dimensions of space, exploring various directions and spatial axes. This makes dance a uniquely comprehensive form of exercise with an extensive range of movements. In contrast to repetitive motions within a confined angle during a typical gym session, dancing offers boundless possibilities for movement that surpass the limits of imagination and make it the most complimentary type of exercise to build a lasting strong core health.
To execute these dynamic movements, your body naturally develops core strength to maintain positions and postures for prolonged periods. Building a stronger core is essential for dance, enabling you to showcase graceful transitions in between movements and dance sequence and maintain control and stability throughout your dancing routines.
My personal dance experience and how dancing helped me build a stronger core strength that I used everyday for any other physical activities, hobbies or even work: I have always been a very active and fit person. I played basketball before dancing. I was good. But once I Started dancing, I started contracting and engaging other muscle and core muscles. Which gave me a much stronger core stability, core power and core conditioning.
I never enjoyed working my abs, but when you dance, you unconsciously have to in order to execute your dance movements. I gained a much stronger abdominal strength, Midsection strength and overall build my core resilience.
You can also add some core strengthening exercises like sit up, Planck and crunches, as well as training your body to stay still on one leg.
3. Improves Physical performances
Physical performance, from a medical point of view, measures whole body function related to mobility. It takes into account not only muscle strength, power, and endurance, but also the contributions of many other body organs and systems such as bones, balance, as well as various cardiovascular and neurologic aspects.
Substantial research have been conducted to analyse the impact of inactivities or the one of different dance activities for the body. This research has shown that undertaking structured dance of any genre is equally and occasionally more effective than other types of structured exercise for improving a range of health outcome measures.
A study from Fong Yan, A., Cobley, S., Chan, C. et al. The Effectiveness of Dance Interventions on Physical Health Outcomes Compared to Other Forms of Physical Activity: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports Med 48, 933–951 (2018) show that of 11,434 studies identified, 28 (total sample size 1276 participants) met the inclusion criteria and meta-analyses showed dance interventions significantly improved body composition, blood biomarkers, and musculoskeletal function. The effect of either intervention on cardiovascular function and self-perceived mobility was equivalent. For this study, a variety of dance genres and structured exercise interventions were compared.
4. Increases energy
Movements and movement through dance is the best therapy for a low energy state or mood. By moving, exercising and dancing, you instantly change your whole energy and mindset, increasing your energy levels if practiced on a regular basis. You are washing your body from negative energy and low mood by activating your whole cardiovascular system, forcing him to physically change your physical state, while also focusing on the moment and not on problems. It instantly change your mood and increase your energy level.
Research and studies also show that regular exercise, including dancing, have positive effects on hormone and pheromone levels, leading to increased energy levels and mood changes.
Dancing stimulates the release of endorphins by more than 25% after 45 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise and increase dopamine level in the brain by over 10% if dance is used as a regular daily practice and activity.
Release and stimulates Endorphins: Exercise, including dancing, stimulates the release of endorphins, which are natural chemicals in the brain that act as mood enhancers and pain relievers. Endorphins create feelings of happiness, euphoria, and overall well-being, boosting energy levels and promoting a positive mood.
Increase Dopamine levels: Dancing can also increase dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in motivation, pleasure, and reward. Increased dopamine levels can enhance mood, motivation, and energy levels.
5. Improves brain function
Dance improves brain function such as Neuroplasticity, motor control system (including Primary Motor Cortex, Basal Ganglia, Cerebellum, Supplementary Motor Area (SMA), Premotor Cortex and Primary Somatosensory Cortex) and executive functions.
Increases Neuroplasticity: Regular dancing session promotes neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to reorganize and form new connections. This can lead to improved neural communication, increased brain flexibility, and enhanced overall brain function.
Develops Motor System (Balance and Coordination): Dancing requires balance, coordination, and spatial awareness. These aspects of dance stimulate and strengthen brain regions responsible for motor control, leading to improved balance and coordination abilities.
Improves Mind-Body Connection: Dancing promotes a strong mind-body connection, where the brain and body work together in harmony. This connection enhances body awareness, sensory integration, and proprioception, improving overall brain function.
Enhance brain function through developing Social Interaction: Dancing often involves social interaction and connection. Engaging with others stimulates areas of the brain responsible for social cognition, empathy, and communication skills, enhancing overall brain function.
A recent study from Karpati, F. J., Giacosa, C., Foster, N. E. V., Penhune, V. B., and Hyde, K. L. (2017). Dance and music share gray matter structural correlates comparing contemporary dancers (training in styles including ballet, tap, jazz, swing, and ballroom dance) as well as latin dancers to non-dancers found that dancers have a greater cortical thickness in superior temporal regions increasing dancers motor system abilities and functionality.
Collectively, this work indicates that dance training and dancing exercise leads to structural brain changes primarily in sensory and motor regions as well as connections between these regions, providing faster conduction and enhanced coordination between these brain areas critical for the expression of dance.
6. Prevents memory loss
One of the benefits of dancing is to prevents memory loss and engage and activate cognitive skills. Researches shows that dancing engages various cognitive skills such as memory, attention, and learning. Remembering choreography, coordinating movements, and responding to rhythm all stimulate neural pathways, enhancing cognitive function and preventing memory loss.
Learning new moves and new choreography activate your brain and challenge it to remember steps. As we get older, we tend to repeatedly do the same things over and over, which as a consequence stop activating our cognitive skills and brain flexibility in learning new things. By dancing and taking dance lessons, you actively engage that part of your brain and actively prevent memory loss. As we get older, this is one of the most important benefits of dancing.
7. Develop creativity
Dancing has a profound impact on developing creativity. Here’s how:
Explore new movements and way of moving your body: Dancing encourages individuals to explore various movements and experiment with their bodies. This exploration fosters creativity by allowing dancers to discover new ways of expressing themselves physically. Through improvisation and freestyle dancing, dancers can unleash their imagination and invent unique movements that reflect their personal style.
Develop Musical Interpretation: Dancing requires dancers to interpret and express the emotions and rhythms of music through their movements. This process involves connecting with the music on an emotional level and translating it into physical expression. By interpreting music in their own unique way, dancers can unleash their creativity and bring a personal touch to their social dance or performances.
Create and imagine a Choreography – Choreography Creation: Dancers often have the opportunity to create their own choreography or contribute to group choreography. This process involves making artistic decisions about movements, formations, and storytelling. Choreographing dances requires creative thinking, problem-solving, and the ability to translate ideas into physical movements that convey a particular message or theme.
Explore new dance universe by adding Dance Collaboration and Adaptation: Dancing often involves working collaboratively with other dancers or choreographers. This collaboration requires creativity in adapting to different dance styles, collaborating on ideas, and finding innovative ways to work together. Dancers learn to blend their individual creativity with the vision of the choreographer or group, resulting in unique and dynamic dance performances.
Expression and Artistic Freedom: Dance is an art form that allows for personal expression and artistic freedom. It encourages dancers to tap into their emotions, experiences, and imagination to convey a story or evoke a particular feeling. The creative process of exploring movement, interpreting music, and expressing oneself through dance allows dancers to develop and nurture their creativity.
Overall, dancing provides a platform for individuals to explore movement, interpret music, create choreography, collaborate with others, and express themselves artistically. These elements contribute to the development of creativity, fostering innovation, self-expression, and the ability to think outside the box.
8. Improves coordination
Coordination is the ability to use different part of your body together or by isolating different group muscle smoothly and efficiently. In a dance context, it is a qualitative motor skills and the ability to add different movement next to each other as a sequence in order to express emotions and interpret the music. In another words, it is the ability to harmonize the parameters of dance technique in terms of time, space, and muscle tension
Learning dance moves from beginners to advance and professional level constantly challenge your brain, balance and coordination.
In fact, dance improves coordination through a combination of rhythmic movement, spatial awareness, and body control. By consistently practicing dance techniques and routines, dancers and individuals develop a heightened sense of coordination, timing, and balance. The intricate footwork, fluid body movements, and coordination with music all contribute to the refinement of motor skills and the ability to synchronize different parts of the body. Over time, dancers become more adept at executing complex sequences, transitioning between movements smoothly, and maintaining precise body alignment. These aspects of dance training enhance overall coordination and help individuals move with grace and precision.
9. Promotes flexibility
Flexibility refers to the range of motion in a joint or group of joints. It is the ability of muscles, tendons, and ligaments to stretch and move freely, allowing for a wide range of motion.
Flexibility in regards to dance. Flexibility in a dance context is the ability to use a wide range of motions and increase your suppleness, adaptability, elasticity, pliability, bendability and fluidity through motions.
Research from Martine A. Deighan shows that professional dancers and pre professionals dancers have a greater flexibility than average individuals that are not dancing and exercising. In fact, they gained hypermobility and exhibit greater ROM (range of Motion) than average.
As an absolute beginner, you will not feel that increase of ROM suddenly. However, unconsciously you will increase your range of motion by learning and practicing different movements during a dance class.
As you practice, you will notice an ease in motion, and develop the ability to move better and smoother. When reaching intermediate levels to advance levels, you actually gain awareness in your movement and add expression in the motion. This awareness teach you how to listen to your body, and your teachers encourage you to stretch to keep improving further your flexibility. The repetitive practice of different actions, gestures and dance sequences develop your mobility, elasticity, adaptability, fluidity, bendability and flexibility.
10. Helps for weight loss
Weight loss is often associated to diet. Which is correct. However, weight loss also occurs by adding physical activities and exercising. Gym and heavy lifting is one aspect. However, research shows that dancing over 30 minutes as a dance cardio exercise burns between 90 to 250 calories according to Harvard Medical School and is an efficient way to combine weight loss with an increase of flexibility and an healthier lifestyle. In fact, studies confirm that a 30 minute dance fitness cardio workout is as effective as a jogging session and procure the same benefits for your heart and cardiovascular system.
However, dancing is less impacting for the body (joins, bones, muscles) and helps producing more pheromones, hormones, and has a better psychological impact than a regular jogging.
It is important to consider your end goal when starting a new dance, because not all dance styles are equal in weight loss. However, all dance styles helps managing weight and increase your physical calories burn. As an example, and a total passionate and addict of Zumba training, I get a lot more calories burn with a 30 min Zumba session (or dance fitness based session) than a 1hour ballroom dance lesson. However, this 1 hour ballroom dance lesson will be more beneficial for my core strength, body awareness, and socialisation skills.
11. Expand your social network
In the Oxford Dictionary, social network is a social media or application through which users can communicate with each other by adding information, messages, images etc. In a dance context, social network is the tissue of relationships (friendship, companionship, lover, or just acquaintances) you build through face to face interactions or connection through virtual media (Social media, applications,etc). In that same dancing context, encounters and networking happen mainly physically, when you go out to a dance class, social dancing event, social gathering, dance competitions, dance festivals and dance assembly.
Wether you are social dancing or attending a dance classes, you will always be around other individuals and be socialising. It can be with other dancers, other dance students, or other dance aficionado and pasionate that are here as a spectator. And you all share one same passion: dance and movement. You are all gathered for one reason: to share a great time doing something related to dance. You naturally meet and expand your social network and improve your socialisation skills. Make new friends, meet new people, even start a new relationship and find the love of your life. Sport dance or hobby dancing greatly influence the process of socialisation of an individual and plays significant role in social development of an individual and human
During my time as a dance teacher, I saw many people connecting through dance. Getting to know each other in my dance classes and bounding together. And if you want to do work on your networking, this is a fun way to do it. Where strangers get to know each other and share a moment. Perfect ice breaker to start a conversation. And talk about what define each of you as an individual outside of the dance. The most popular classes to meet people were salsa and bachata. Why? Salsa music has a high and happy energy. It is also one of the most popular latin dance style. Bachata is also great to expand your social network. The slow beat of Bachata music helps the dance students to learn a dance step, while having time to connect with their partner.
Matter of fact, one of a recently married couple I have been teaching and choreographing their wedding dance, got to know each other in my salsa dance classes. And since then, they met many other people that became their friends, on top of finding each other and getting married! This was to me amazing to witness and gives me hope for anyone that is still looking for love but can’t find anyone. Do not despair!
12. Helps against depression
Depression is primary defined as a mental state characterized by a pessimistic sense of inadequacy and a despondent lack of activity. Depression is psychologic which can have physical consequences on a depressed individual. Depression is also a perpetual cycle where the depressed individual constantly feels down and keep bringing himself down, losing hope and will. In a smaller way, it is characterised by a lack of energy, and a negative self-talk. The repetitive aspect of it bring each individual in a lower and lower state of mind.
Talking though issues can help, but the most efficient way to get through it is to exercise. In fact, physical activity, such as dancing, increases the production and release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, appetite, and sleep. Higher levels of serotonin are associated with improved mood, reduced anxiety, and increased energy.
Aniko Marraz with his research article “When do you dance? Development of the dance motivation Inventory (DMI)” proves that Dance Movement Therapy (DMT) is an effective way to treat depression diminishing the probably to be depressed by 45%.
Katriina Hyvonen arrives to the same conclusion as stated in her research article “The Effects of Dance Movement Therapy in the Treatment of Depression: A Multicenter, Randomized Controlled Trial in Finland”.
Vicky Karkou, in her research article “Effectiveness of Dance Movement Therapy in the Treatment of Adults With Depression: A Systematic Review With Meta-Analyses” also concluded, after reviewing 817 studies, that DMT (dance Movement Therapy) is an effective intervention in the treatment of adults with depression.
I personally went through a small depression myself. Being far away from my family and friends, in another country and culture, everything feels more rough. So I kept exercising and dancing. Dance helped me expressing my emotions through dance and not keep everything inside me. And this helped me so much. The other aspect of dance in relation to depression is that when attending dance classes, or social dance events, you are constantly surrounded by so many other individuals of the dance scene, while constantly exercising. It had a positive effect on my self-concept, psychological well-being, lowered my level of anxiety and helped me focus on the present moment.
13. Bust stress
Stress is defined as a mental, non palpable and invisible pressure or worry that an individual experience caused by problems in there life or created by having too much to do.
It is something that we as human create ourself in our mind, and has repercussions on our physical health as well as mental health.
Dancing allows to bust and diminish the amount of stress that we can feel by through 6 different mediums.
Firstly, by doing a physical activity, our brain stimulates the release of endorphins as we saw earlier, commonly called the “feel-good” hormones (including serotonins and endorphins).
Secondly, dancing helps with Cortisol regulation. Regular exercise, including dancing, helps regulate cortisol levels. Cortisol is a hormone that is released in response to stress. By engaging in physical activity such as dancing, you can lower cortisol levels, leading to reduced stress, increased energy, and improved mood.
Thirdly, dancing releases stress, by expressing your emotions and exercising, helping letting go of negative emotions and promoting a sense of emotional relief.
Finally, Music is also known as a mood lifter. And a lighter mood helps feeling more relaxed by relaxing body and mind. The rhythm and melody helps distract your mind from stressful thoughts and be present in the moment as well as reconnect your body with your mind.
Research shows that dancing for 25 minutes in a row reduces the symptoms of depression by 47% and 57% if you dance for 45 minute at a medium-intensity dance session. Studies demonstrates that dance have a positive impact and effects on people with depression and anxiety, leading to an improved quality of life.
14. Improves productivity
Productivity refers to the measure of how efficiently and effectively tasks or goals are accomplished within a given period of time. It is the ability to generate desired outcomes or results by utilizing available resources, such as time, energy, and effort. It is basically the ability to do more by using less time and ressources. Productivity can be evaluated at various levels, including individual, team, or organizational levels.
In the context of work, productivity often relates to the quantity and quality of work produced. It involves maximizing output while minimizing input or resources expended. A highly productive individual or organization can accomplish tasks in a timely manner, meet deadlines, achieve goals, and maintain a high level of performance.
However, to attain a good level of productivity, you need a good balance. Otherwise you will burn out due to stress and anxiety and not connecting within your body.
According to a study conducted by Leeds Metropolitan University, incorporating exercise such as dance into the workday and daily lifestyle enhance your productivity and performances by 33%. The research indicates that employees who engage in gym sessions during working hours demonstrate increased productivity, improved time management skills, and a heightened sense of job satisfaction.
15. Improves muscle growth
The primary mechanism behind muscle growth, known as hypertrophy, involves the enlargement of individual muscle fibers. Nevertheless, other research indicates that muscle growth also occur through an increase in the total number of muscle fibers, a process referred to as hyperplasia.
Scientific studies have established that regular, intense resistance exercises can cause fibres to split longitudinally and assist in developing muscle and muscle growth.
During a dance class or dance practice, dancers and individuals repeatedly execute the same movements and holding positions and frame, leading to a continuous tension and contraction of abdominals and other group muscles. This intense spontaneous contraction or longer hold helps build muscle, core strength and develop muscle.
After over 15 years of dance experience, my calf muscle doubled sizes due to over 2000 hours of dance. I also gained and developed my abdominal belt (and core muscles), and noticed an hypertrophy on my shoulders and triceps.
16. Improves bones health
Bone health refers to the overall strength, density, and quality of bones in the human body. It contributes to the well-being and functionality of the skeletal system. Good bone health is crucial for proper body structure, movement, and protection of vital organs
According to studies and findings from the National Osteoporosis Foundation, engaging in high-intensity exercises through dancing stimulates the generation of new bone tissue, leading to stronger, more rigid and more resilient bones. Additionally, the high intensity exercise associated with dancing makes the muscles stronger by consistently and gently pushing them against the bones during stretching and broadening.
Another research from B. L. Matthews in his article “Dancing for bone health: a 3-year longitudinal study of bone mineral accrual across puberty in female non-elite dancers and controls” shows that dancers have greater Bone Mineral Content (BMC) at the total Body (TB), lower limbs, femoral neck and lumbar Spine than a non dancer.
That means that athletes dancers, professional dancers, and intermediate to advance dancers have a higher bone density than non dancers resulting in a stronger bone health, bone and skeletal health, and overall bone quality and integrity, leading to a strong skeletal system and optimal bone conditions.
17. Improves sexual life
Dancing improves your sexual life by releasing more pheromone and keeping you fit and energetic. Although less scientifically studied, some research suggests that physical activity and exercise lead to an increase in pheromone release. Pheromones are chemical substances that can influence social interactions and attract others. The increase in pheromone release during exercise impact mood and energy levels.
You also learn how to execute movements in a more sensual and sexual way, making it immediately more attractive to the opposite sexe. Finally, a good dancer always attract the attention of the opposite gender. They would notice him or her, and feel immediately attracted.
When dancing, the extra release of pheromone provoke also an addictive feeling and at times an alchemy and chemistry between dancers, instantly attracted to each others. That increase in chemistry provoke an increase in desire and encourage a more flourishing sexual life.
My dance teacher (dancing son cubano in the video bellow) for example is over 68 years old, but still teach internationally and have the energy of a 35 years old man. He still attracts women younger than him, and build desire to other women who want to be close to him.
Getting started with dancing
Dance is a multifaceted art form that combines movement, music, and expression to create a rich and dynamic form of human communication and artistic expression.
Dancing encompasses a wide range of descriptions and perspectives.
It can be seen as a professional activity, a sportive activity, a hobby or recreational activity, a passion, a social interaction or seen as an entertainment.
Dance as a Professional activity: Referring to dancers who pursue dance as a career, performing in professional dance companies, theater productions, or as solo artists.
Dance as a Sportive activity: Recognizing dance as a physically demanding and competitive discipline, often involving rigorous training, competitions, and athletic performances. But also as a mean to strengthen your body and core muscle as a recreational activity.
Dance as a Hobby or recreational activity: Describing dance as a leisure pursuit or pastime engaged in for personal enjoyment, self-expression, and relaxation. Latin Dance Australia
Dance as a Passion: Acknowledging dance as a deep-seated and intense interest or love, often driving individuals to dedicate significant time and effort to their practice and exploration of different dance styles. Some individuals refuse to take classes, but want to express their movement their own way.
Dance as a Social interaction: Highlighting dance as a means of connecting with others, participating in group classes, social dances, or cultural events, fostering camaraderie and building social relationships.
Dance as Entertainment: Recognizing dance as a form of performance or entertainment, enjoyed by audiences in various settings, such as theaters, television shows, music videos, and live events.
Everyone can dance from all ages, gender and abilities.
Dancing is also an activity that is done alone, with a partner or by participating in a group.
There is 25 different places where you can enjoy dancing as an activity:
- Dance studios
- Social venues
- Community halls
- Dance schools
- Fitness clubs
- Performance theaters
- Outdoor festivals
- Cultural centers
- Dance academies
- Recreation centers
- Wedding venues
- Parks and open spaces
- Cruise ship
- Dance conventions
- School gymnasiums
- Senior centers
- Retirement communities
- Bars and pubs
- Music festivals
- Dance workshops
- Street performances
- Wedding receptions
When dancing and starting dance lessons, it is important to wear the appropriate dancewear and footwear associated to each dance style. Each of this dance footwear is specially designed and conceived to help individuals dance a specific style. Learn more about the different types of heels for women and how to choose the best heels for dance.
Latin dance shoes and ballroom dance shoes that are specifically designed for latin dances (such as salsa, bachata, kizomba, zouk, etc) and ballroom dances (such as tango, rumba, etc) would have a very flexible suede sole allowing dancers to spins better and feel more supported while dancing. Heels height and shape will vary depending on the level of the individual and dancers to match their skills, abilities and preferences.
On the Other hand, Tap dance shoes (also called tap shoes) are specifically designed dancing footwear that enable the distinctive sound and movements of tap dancing defined by a hard sole made of leather or synthetic material. The sole is often attached to the upper part of the shoe with screws or rivets to create a secure connection and enhance sound production. They also have metal plates attached to the heel and toe areas. These metal plates, known as taps, produce the characteristic tapping sound when they come into contact with a hard surface. The size and configuration of the taps can vary, influencing the tone and resonance of the sound.
Shop our Tapping dance shoes
Split-sole ballet shoes: These shoes have a sole that is divided into two parts, one for the ball of the foot and the other for the heel. Split-sole shoes offer greater flexibility and enhance the dancer’s ability to point their toes and articulate their feet.
Full-sole ballet shoes: These shoes have a sole that covers the entire bottom of the foot. Full-sole shoes provide more support, particularly for beginners or dancers with weaker feet. They can help build strength and stability.
Pointe Shoes: Pointe shoes have a rigid box or “toe box” at the front of the shoe, made of layers of paper, fabric, and glue. This box provides support and allows dancers to rise onto the tips of their toes, known as dancing en pointe. The box is reinforced with a sturdy shank, typically made of leather or plastic, that runs along the bottom of the shoe, providing additional support to the arch of the foot.
Check our exhaustive guide about women’s dance shoes
To get started, choose a style of dance you like and that will allow you to reach your goals (loosing weight, socialising, building core strength, etc) and join a dance school in your local area or start learning online through online dance tutorials.
Who is dancing for?
Dancing is for everyone, every gender, all abilities and conditions and all age groups:
- Teens and Young Adults
- Seniors and elderly
- People with disabilities
- Men, womens, transgender, two spirits, cisgender, non-binary, genderqueer, gender expression, gender fluid, gender neutral.
Benefits of dancing for toddlers
There is 6 benefits of dancing for toddlers and in early childhood:
- Use their immense physical energy in something productive and satisfying (Physical health): Toddlers have boundless amount of energy and dancing (physical exercising) is the perfect place to let it out in a productive and fun way
- Improve Mental health and emotional health by uplifting their mood and giving them a way to express emotions that they haven’t learned how to put a word on it.
- Develop Social Awareness, and improve skills such as communication, intuition, rhythm and compassion.
- Improve Limb coordination and motor system (mobility)
- Better balance
- Develop an appreciation for music
Dance benefits for kids and children
Dance is a natural form of expression for children. They often enjoy moving their bodies to music and exploring different rhythms and movements. Many children participate in dance classes or school programs to learn various dance styles and develop their coordination, musicality, and creativity. Giving them the option to learn how to dance at a young age give them the opportunity to express their creativity and develop it at a very young age while their brain is still forming.
Should I enrol my son in dancing?
Yes. Enrolling your son in a dance class will improves his confidence, coordination and allow him to connect with other while learning self-expressions.
Is it okay for boys to be in a dance class?
Yes, Absolutely! Boys can learn any dance styles and thrives in all of them. Dance is inclusive regardless of abilities, gender and ages.
Benefits for dancing to young adults
Dance is a popular activity among teenagers and young adults. They can engage in dance classes, join dance teams or clubs, or participate in dance competitions. Dance provides an outlet for self-expression, a way to connect with peers, and an avenue for personal growth and muscle development. It allows them to start building core strength, build confidence, improve their heart and lungs conditions while developing hyper mobility and increasing their muscular strength.
Benefits of dance for adults
Dancing is not limited to a specific age group. Many adults participate in dance classes or social dance events as a means of exercise, stress relief, socializing, or personal enjoyment. Dance styles like salsa, tango, hip-hop, or ballroom are particularly popular among adults because they are fun and social and find other individuals that are in a similar age group, making the experience more relatable to them.
When reaching an adult age, dancing is also a great way to stay fit by exercising in a social and interactive way. For some individuals, reaching the adult age means doing less a activities and sport, getting in a routine. And this is the worst thing you can do for your physical and mental health. Dancing is a fun way to exercise but that keep the benefits of exercising on a cardiovascular aspect, as well as the great psychological effects.
Dancing benefits for seniors and elderly
Dance is one of the most important activity for seniors and elderly. Dance helps seniors to improve flexibility and enhanced agility, which is essential for seniors. As we age, we tend to be more sedimentary and that impact our physical health. By adding dance into their life, elderly and seniors diminished the risk of injuries.
It also helps older adults to engage their balance and solicit the body and brain to stay active and aware, enhancing the ability to adjust and maintain balance.
According to a study from Jennifer H LeLaurin, each year 700 000 to 1 million Senior citizens falls occurs in hospital resulting in about 250 000 injuries and up to 11 000 deaths. In another words, 1/4 falls results in injuries and 1.1% results in death.
In Australia, falls pose a significant health concern within the community, affecting approximately 30% of adults aged 65 and above who experience at least one fall annually. As Australia’s population continues to age, this issue is expected to escalate. The proportion of individuals aged over 65 is projected to rise from 14% (3 million people) in 2010 to 23% (8.1 million people) in 2050.
In my experience as a dance teacher, I did and still organise many dance classes and events in nursing homes. We regularly go to the BUPA and Sandbrok nursing home and encourage seniors residents to dance and activate their brain. I usually do some dance performances and shows to lift their mood and make them smile. But I also encourage them to start moving their hands or arms (most time it is safer for them to stay sit in order to avoid any falls) and interact with me while dancing. Itt solicit their brain and mobility.
But from my experience, the most favourable benefits for seniors and elderly about dancing is the psychological benefit and the uplifting mood they experience. After a 1 hour session with them, I can see a big smile on their face and feel happy to be alive, watching and experiencing movement, fun and watching the passion in the dance.
We highly recommend seniors dance classes for over 50s
Benefts of dancing for people with disabilities
Dance is inclusive and is for everyone regardless of their physical or mental conditions. There are dance programs specifically designed for people with physical disabilities, cognitive impairments, or sensory challenges. These programs provide opportunities for self-expression, creativity, and physical engagement. It is important however two choose a dance style that is adapted too their need and goals.
What are the different types of dance?
There is 17 Categories of types of Dance to choose from. Each Category has its own style of dances that belong to this category. In total, there is 111 Styles of Dance all together (and even more sub-genre)
It all depends what is the goal you want to achieve when starting a new dance style. Our recommendation: have a look at some video of each style, listen to the music, and choose the one that touch you the most. Also, depending on your fitness goal, if you want to loose calories and loose weight, opt for a high intensity dance workout. As a beginner level, you will burn more calories easier in those dance fitness classes. However, at an intermediate to advance levels, they all will develop and bring the benefits of dancing we talked previously!
– Classical Ballet
– Contemporary Ballet
– Neoclassical Ballet
– Romantic Ballet
– Modern Ballet
– Balanchine Style
– Royal Ballet Style
– Bournonville Style
2. Ballroom Dances:
– Viennese Waltz
– Paso Doble
3. Latin Dances:
– Colombian Salsa
– Argentine tango
– Perico Ripiao
– Paso Doble
4. Swing Dances:
– Lindy Hop
– East Coast Swing
– West Coast Swing
– Collegiate Shag
5. Hip-Hop, Urban Dance and Street Dances:
– Breaking (B-boying/B-girling)
– House Dance
6. Contemporary and Modern Dances:
– Contemporary Dance
– Modern Dance
– Jazz Dance
– Lyrical Dance
– Horton Technique
– Cunningham Technique
– Graham Technique
– Limón Technique
7. Tap Dance:
– Broadway Tap
– Rhythm Tap
– Classical Tap
– Jazz Tap
8. Folk and Traditional Dances:
– Irish Step Dance
– Scottish Highland Dance
– Bharatanatyam (Indian Classical Dance)
– Odissi (Indian Classical Dance)
– Kathak (Indian Classical Dance)
– Salsa (Cuban, Puerto Rican, Colombian styles)
– Tango (Argentine Tango)
– Belly Dance
– Polynesian Dance
– Ukrainian Dance
9. Breakaway Dances:
– Breakaway (Solo Jazz)
– Solo Blues
– Solo Vernacular Jazz
– Solo Charleston
10. Ethnic and Cultural Dances:
– African Dance
– Middle Eastern Dance
– Chinese Traditional Dance
– Japanese Traditional Dance (Nihon Buyo)
– Korean Traditional Dance
– Native American Powwow Dance
– Bollywood Dance
– Irish Ceili Dance
11. Street/Club Dances:
– House Dance
12. Partner Dances:
– Argentine Tango
– Swing Dance (West Coast Swing, East Coast Swing)
– Lindy Hop
– Blues Dance
– Ballroom Social Dances (Social Foxtrot, Social Waltz, Social Quickstep, etc.)
13. Experimental and Fusion Dances:
– Contact Improvisation
– Fusion Belly Dance
– Contemporary Fusion
– Tribal Fusion
14. Theatrical and Performance Dances:
– Musical Theatre Dance
– Cabaret Dance
15. Dance Fitness
– Dance Fit
– Dance Cardio
16. Pole Dancing
17. Square Dancing
Choosing a dance style
Choosing the right dance style depends on your main goal. Here is some questions you should ask yourself and our dance recommendation:
- Do I want to loose weight quickly?
To loose weight quickly, select one of the group fitness classes such as dance fitness, dance fit, dance cardio, Zumba, or afro dance.
- Do I want to have fun and socialise. Meet new people?
Choose a latin dance. Salsa and Bachata are the most popular latin dances and the best to socialise and get to meet new people worldwide while traveling.
- Do I want to gain a stronger core strength?
Ballet dance is the best dance to build and gain strong core muscle.
- Do I want to improve my flexibility?
Start with any dance in particular. Once you reach a good level, try Ballet as it requires the most strength and flexibility.
- Do I prefer improving my coordination arms and legs for your professional activity (such as boxing)?
Try a fast salsa for the footwork and arms figures and moves. Cali salsa is the fastest type of salsa and has the most footwork. Cuban Salsa is also great. Learn some Salsa suelta too,
- Do I want to dance with a partner, Alone or both?
When dancing with a partner, there is always one leader and one follower. You will need to learn one side or both. But can only be one at a time. When you dance alone, you are always in control of your body.
If you want to learn both, Salsa is the best as you can dance salsa alone Or with a dance partner.
- Am I feeling more confident in a group environment, or prefer group classes?
To socialise and meet new people, opt for group classes. To learn faster and without being judge by other , choose private lessons.
- Is my goal to learn a dance extremely quick?
Private classes accelerate your learning journey. The fastest way to learn is to combine private classes, group classes and social dancing. If you are in no rush and just want to have fun simply choose group classes and social dancing events.
- Do I want to participate in dance competitions? Or is it just for fun?
Joining Competition team will accelerate and deepen your learning and skills. It also provide a sense of accomplishment and wellbeing. But it can be very challenging physically and mentally.
- What is my favourite type of music?
Always start a dance that use music that you actually enjoy listening. You will need to listen to it often to improve your dance. So better liking the music associated to the dance itself.
- What is the most attractive type of dance to me?
Do you like Rock n roll or Salsa visual aspect of the dance?
- Do I want a slow or fast pace dance?
When a slow learner or struggling with timing and beat, it is always easier to start with a slower pace song.
What are the 3 most popular dance types?
Salsa, Ballet and Hip Hop are the most popular dance types.
30% of young children tried dancing ballet for at least a term. Salsa is the most popular latin dance and has grown so much in popularity that 1 adults out of 10 have been in contact or saw a salsa dance.
What are the different types of Latin dance?
Latin Dances are defined as dance coming from a Latin countries (such as the Caribbean, south america, spain). It was then extended to any latin dance present in Latin dance festivals. That includes African based dances such as Kizomba and Semba.
Many of the original Latin dances come from and have been influenced by African dances such as Salsa was influenced heavily by African dances, rumba and Orishas.
There is 20 type of latin dances:
– Son Cubano
– Colombian Salsa
– Argentine tango
– Perico Ripiao
– Paso Doble
What are the 3 most popular Latin Dance types?
Salsa, Bachata and kizomba. In order of importance.
Should You dance everyday ?
Dancing for 30 minutes or 1 hour five times a week is considered good for health.
What are the benefits of dancing 1 hour a day?
Dancing 1 hour a day improves your cardiovascular system, mobility, brain, motricity, mental health and general well-being. It makes you feel free, forget your worries and focus on the present, while having fun, sweating and burning calories while also improving your coordination.
How many hours a day should you dance to lose weight?
It is recommended to dance between 30 minutes to 1 hour a day regularly to loose weight. However, if you are attending a dance fitness or cardio dance session, you will burn calories and loose weight faster. It is then recommended to dance between 25 min to 45 minutes using a high intensity cardio workout.
Which Dance is best for weight loss?
Zumba or any dance fitness or dance cardio session where you dance constantly for 30 to 45 minutes with different pace and intensities!
Dance Fitness Tutorial Online
What is the easiest type of dancing to learn between Salsa and Bachata?
Bachata is easier to learn than Salsa. Bachata music is slower than salsa. There is also less instruments making it easier for a beginner to understand and catch the rhythm.
Our Best Tips for dancing
– From my dance experience as a dancer and dance teacher, the most important advice is to be patient. Don’t try to learn and rush learning the foundation of any dance style in order to do impressive moves like the professionals. By rushing it, you will not learn how to lead a step properly and might injure your dance partner. Learning how to lead a partner dance is a skill that take at least a year to learn.
– On top of that, it is very important to be consistent in your learning and practice regularly to train and create muscle memories while improving coordination. Make sure to warm up before attending any dance lessons or social event and stretch your body as much as possible to avoid any risk of injuries.
– Always maintain a good posture while dancing, actively engaging your core muscles and keeping your spine elongated and shoulders relaxed.
– Listen to the style of music associated to the dance as much as possible. Understanding the music will make it easier for you to improvise on it !
– Again, master your basics! Basics are the most important thing you will learn and that will be helping you all your dancing life!
– Take dance classes and private lessons, and choose the best dance teachers in their field. Don’t learn from a person that learned from Youtube for example.
– Immerse yourself by watching dance videos and performances. Be inspired! It will motivates you to learn more and faster!
– Never talk to yourself with negative talk. Always stay positive and be patient! Everything will comes in due time!
– Take care of your physical health and body. Balance is extremely important. If you injured yourself, there will be no more dancing. Dancing can be demanding. Make sure to stay hydrated, eat a balance diet and stretch!
– Finally, get yourself out of your comfort zone and try to perform at least once! It is always nice to close a cycle!
How to be a better Salsa Dancer?
7 Interesting Facts about dancing
1. Dance is a Universal Language: Dancing is often referred to as a universal language because it transcends cultural and language barriers. Regardless of where you are from, dancing has the power to connect people and communicate emotions and stories without the need for words.
2. Dance present Physical and Mental Benefits: Dancing is not just a creative art form but also a great way to stay physically and mentally fit. It improves cardiovascular health, increases flexibility, strengthens muscles, and enhances coordination. Dancing is also known to reduce stress, boost mood, and improve cognitive function.
3. Dance is a Therapy: Dance has been used as a form of therapy for various conditions. Dance therapy can help individuals with physical disabilities, emotional trauma, and mental health issues. It provides a creative outlet for expression, promotes self-confidence, and aids in healing and personal growth.
4.Dance is a Cultural Expressions: Different dance styles reflect the rich cultural heritage of various regions and communities around the world. From ballet to salsa, hip-hop to traditional folk dances, each style carries unique movements, rhythms, and storytelling elements that showcase the diversity of human expression.
5. Dance has Historical Significance: Dancing has played a significant role in human history. Ancient civilizations, such as the Egyptians and Greeks, incorporated dance in religious ceremonies, social gatherings, and celebrations. Many traditional dances have been passed down through generations, preserving cultural traditions and customs.
6. Dance can be of Competitive Nature: Dance competitions and showcases are popular worldwide. These events bring together talented dancers who compete in various styles, such as ballroom, Latin, hip-hop, and contemporary. Competitive dancing requires precision, athleticism, and artistry, captivating audiences with breathtaking performances.
7. Dance constantly evolves – Evolution of Dance Styles: Dance styles continually evolve and adapt over time. New dance genres emerge as artists experiment with different movements and fuse various styles. For example, the fusion of traditional Latin dances with contemporary elements gave rise to bachata sensual and urban kizomba, showcasing the dynamic nature of dance as an art form.
7 Fun Facts about Dancing
7 fun facts about dancing that are not widely known:
1. Dancing is a Workout: Dancing is not only an art form but also a fantastic workout. Did you know that an hour of dancing can burn anywhere from 200 to 600 calories? It’s a fun and effective way to stay active and fit.
2. Mirror Neurons and Dance: When you watch someone dance, your brain’s mirror neurons are activated. These neurons make you feel as if you are performing the movements yourself, leading to a sense of connection and empathy with the dancer.
3. Fred Astaire’s Dance Studios: The famous dancer Fred Astaire, known for his elegant and smooth dance style, founded a chain of dance studios. These studios, which still operate today, have trained countless dancers and continue to promote the joy of dance.
4. The Longest Conga Line: The world record for the longest conga line ever formed was set in Miami, Florida, in 1988. It consisted of an astounding 119,986 people dancing together in a line that stretched for over 119 miles!
5. The Oldest Dance: The oldest known dance in the world is the Bhimbetka rock shelters in India. These rock paintings, dating back around 9,000 years, depict dancers in various poses, illustrating the ancient origins of dance as a form of expression.
6. Dance and Happiness: Dancing has been scientifically linked to increased happiness. When you dance, your body releases endorphins, which are natural mood-boosting chemicals. So, the next time you’re feeling down, put on your favorite tunes and dance it out!
7. Dance as Therapy: Dance therapy is a recognized form of treatment for certain psychological and physical conditions. It has been shown to help individuals with depression, anxiety, Parkinson’s disease, and even autism spectrum disorders, promoting emotional well-being and physical coordination.
How to avoid dance injuries?
To avoid dance injuries, it’s essential to prioritize safety and take proper care of your body. Here are 9 tips to help prevent dance injuries:
1. Warm Up: Always start your dance session with a thorough warm-up. Warm-up exercises prepare your body for movement by increasing blood flow to the muscles and improving flexibility. Include dynamic stretches, gentle cardio, and specific warm-up exercises for the muscles you’ll be using.
2. Learn the Proper Technique: Focus on learning and maintaining proper dance technique. Correct technique helps distribute forces evenly throughout your body, reducing the risk of strain or injury. Take classes from qualified instructors who can guide you in proper alignment and form.
3. Be consistent and show Gradual Progression: Avoid pushing your body too hard too quickly. Gradually increase the intensity, duration, and complexity of your dance routines. Give your body time to adapt and strengthen to reduce the risk of overuse injuries.
4. Add some Cross-Training and Conditioning: Engage in cross-training activities and conditioning exercises to build overall strength, flexibility, and stamina. Include exercises that target specific muscle groups used in dance, such as core strength exercises and stretching routines.
5. Make sure to Rest and take time for Recovery: Allow your body adequate time to rest and recover between dance sessions. Overtraining can lead to fatigue and increase the risk of injuries. Incorporate rest days into your training schedule and listen to your body’s signals for rest.
6. Maintain Proper Nutrition and Hydration: Maintain a healthy and balanced diet to provide your body with the necessary nutrients for optimal performance and injury prevention. Stay hydrated before, during, and after dance sessions to support muscle function and prevent cramps.
7. Listen to Your Body: Pay attention to any signs of pain, discomfort, or fatigue. If you experience persistent pain or notice any changes in your body, seek professional advice from a dance instructor, physical therapist, or healthcare provider.
8. Buy Proper Dance Gear: Wear appropriate dance shoes and attire that provide proper support and allow for freedom of movement. Ensure that your shoes are well-fitted and suitable for the specific style of dance you’re practicing.
9. Cross-Training and Rest Days: Engage in cross-training activities and conditioning exercises to build overall strength, flexibility, and stamina. Include exercises that target specific muscle groups used in dance, such as core strength exercises and stretching routines
Thank you for reading our page and article about the benefits of dancing. We hope you now grasp the full pictures of the benefits of dancing and start adding dance into your life!