We all know exercise is good for us, but it’s not always fun is it? I’m not a gym person, I don’t run and I can’t think of anything worse than sit ups. For me, dance based fitness is the perfect form of exercise and here are six reasons I think you’ll agree!
Dance fitness makes you smile while you sweat
I can’t help smiling when I’m dancing. Despite dripping with sweat at the end of an intense class, I’ll still be smiling and having fun. Dancing releases those ‘happy hormones’ in the brain and this, along with the uplifting music, means you’ll hardly even notice you’re working out!
Dance fitness classes are more about enthusiasm than ability
If you have enthusiasm, you’ll get a great cardio workout from attending a dance fitness class, no matter what your dance ability. You get out of a workout what you put in to it and as long as you keep moving, shaking, wiggling, marching, shimmying, shuffling with enthusiasm, you will reap the benefits! Dance fitness is not about technical dance ability, it’s about having fun while raising your heart rate and improving your aerobic fitness. Seriously, do not worry about ‘getting’ all the moves straight away, dance fitness is not a dance lesson and as long as you are moving you are doing it right, even if you’re completely freestyling your own routine! The steps will become more natural to you over time. Worried about what others think? Don’t be! Everyone else is focusing on the steps and their own workout too, they are not watching or judging anyone else.
There’s so much more to fitness than weight loss
If you’re attending a dance fitness class solely to lose weight, good for you. Sure, if you are burning more calories than you’re consuming, you’re on track to lose weight, keep it up as long as you are doing it sensibly and healthily. But there are way more benefits to this type of exercise class and I feel weight loss is a bonus but shouldn’t necessarily be the main goal. We’ve already talked about endorphins and aerobic fitness, but dance fitness classes can also do great things for your mental health. I say this as someone who struggles with anxiety, low self confidence and shyness and has been through periods of avoiding social interaction. A couple of years ago I began attending local classes and got back into dance and fitness and my confidence grew and grew until I believed in myself enough to ‘stand at the front’, take my instructor trainings and lead a class. Could I stand in front of a group and deliver a speech or presentation? Absolutely not! Dancing is different – I really do believe it helps build confidence, boost mental wellbeing and promote body positivity, while of course putting a smile on your face and also increasing your physical fitness, muscular strength, flexibility, coordination, balance, the list goes on!
Dancing is a good brain workout too
It really is! Other forms of exercise can be physically tougher but dancing can also be a high intensity workout for both the body and the brain. In dance fitness, both simple and challenging steps are mixed with directional movement and variations in speed, all contributing to the intensity of the class. Over time, you’ll begin to learn the routines and know which step comes next, improving your memory. Studies have shown that dancing can even lead to a reduced risk of dementia and alzheimers.
Dance fitness classes are ideal for all ages
And all body shapes and sizes too! Work at your own level and if you feel the need to modify any of the steps, modify them – it’s your body and it’s your workout, challenge yourself but know your limits and don’t push yourself too hard. Dancing can help to make everyday tasks easier as you get older, by improving your joint mobility, balance, stability and coordination and reducing the risks of everyday injuries, falls, stiffness, aches and pains.
Dance fitness is the kind of exercise class you’re more likely to stick with
How many times have you made a resolution to exercise more often, then found yourself becoming bored or giving up because you failed to see or feel any results? Dance fitness (and group exercise in general) is a popular choice of workout and one you’re more likely to stick with. It’s enjoyable and doesn’t feel too much like a workout, yet the benefits are abundant. Working out in a group is much more fun than exercising alone and participants can encourage and motivate each other. One day, post-Covid, we may even be able to shout, cheer and sing along to the tracks at the top of our voices again too!
Convinced? Join me for a Zumba Toning session, or come along to the ‘opening night’ of my Broadway Boogie classes or try a FitSteps FAB class, beginning soon! Follow ‘en Joy dance fitness on Facebook for class updates.