Why Dancing is so good for your brain

 

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For centuries, dance manuals and other writings have lauded the health benefits of dancing, usually as physical exercise.  More recently we’ve seen research on further health benefits of dancing, such as stress reduction and increased serotonin level, with its sense of well-being.

Most recently we’ve heard of another benefit:  frequent dancing apparently makes us smarter. Dancing is more than just an enjoyable activity to experience with friends or family; dancing has the amazing ability to improve the way your brain functions.

Dancing does the following:

  1. Visualizing Movements can Improve Muscle Memory – putting steps together, choreography Studies show that “marking” choreography —walking through movements slowly and encoding each movement with a cue – aka vizualizing or “thinking behind the doing of dance” can help improve muscle memory. This type of visualization and marking, learned through dance, can also be used across a variety of fields (ie. school, work etc.) to optimize performance.
  2. Mental Escape – Music is a powerful thing. Dance uses the body to express emotion and provides an opportunity for individuals to communicate their feelings. When dancing an ample flow of mood-improving chemicals is released helping to elevate our mental state; even one lively dance session has benefits such as reduction of stress and anxiety. Dancing with others also helps us feel more connected and social. Dance classes can encourage social bonds and friendships which are key factors in improving our mood and mental health.
  3. Balance and Coordination – Have you ever wondered why ballet dancers don’t get dizzy when they perform pirouettes? Research suggests that through years of practice and training, dancers gain the ability to suppress signals from the balance organs in the inner ear that are linked to the cerebellum. Dancing will help improve the function of your cerebellum, which in turn may help you improve your balance and make you less dizzy. You do not need to be a professional dancer to benefit from this sport. Dancing at all levels will help.
  4. It can make you more intelligent – Dancing is the perfect activity to use and hone your intelligence because you’ll constantly find yourself in situations that require a rapid response. When you dance, you have to decide how fast to move, which way to turn, how the beat of the song is changing, and so on. Dancing frequently will increase the speed at which your brain responds to problems, and enhance your intelligence in the process.Image result for dance and the brain

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Elan Dance Arts (EDA) offers dancers a new level of dance training through programs that are not offered anywhere else in the city. Starting from ages 2.5 to adults whether it’s for certified examinations or simply for health, fun and recreation, we’re the studio for you! EDA is the only ADAPT certified studio in the SouthWestern Ontario area. We specialize in educating students using the distinguished Associated Dance Arts for Professional Teachers (ADAPT) syllabus created by Brian Foley, one of Canada’s most renowned dance teachers, directors and choreographers. We are highly devoted and dedicated to the process of the development and popularization of dance activities among people of all ages. We are also fully committed to providing our students with the highest level of education.

We’re sure to have a dance class(es) perfect for you!

Contact us at office@elandancearts.ca for more information.