Getting out there and going dancing is not just for the young but also the young at heart. Dancing for those of us fifty and over can be one of the healthiest things we can do for our bodies as well as our minds.
Dancing provides a wonderful mind and body connection. It can improve body alignment; especially for those with osteoporosis, because it builds bone strength since it is a weight-bearing exercise. It can enhance your mood by releasing endorphins which is a brain chemical that provides a feeling of well being much like how we feel after a good run or a good belly laugh, and can also help with depression. Getting out on the dance floor increases intellectual and social interaction which can help reduce the risk of dementia. Having to learn and remember intricate dance steps and the general social interaction of learning and remembering new names and interacting with a group of people can help to create new learning pathways in the brain. Dance can improve balance and flexibility. The movement of dance sends oxygen-rich blood to the brain and throughout the body which can improve cardiovascular health. Dance can also improve your coordination and can even help those who suffer with Parkinson’s by helping them to focus their movements and improve the speed at which they can move. It also allows them to find new ways of moving their body.
So no matter what the reason, get out there and dance for the health of it. As with any form of exercise check with your doctor to make sure it is something safe for you to do. Make an appointment at WNY Medical, PC located at 4979 Harlem Road or by calling 923-4380.