We tend to think of dancing as something for young people. The connotations of courtship and the association with nightlife tend to be hard for us to overcome. But dancing comes in a variety of shapes and styles, and there's something for all of us no matter our age, health, or the condition of our hips. Here are some compelling reasons to get your senior out on the dance floor!
1. Burn Calories
When it comes to your body, you need to use it or lose it. Traditional aerobic or weightlifting exercises might be difficult for many seniors, but dancing can offer a solution to start burning calories without risking muscle tears, joint damage, or other risks associated with higher-intensity workouts. This type of exercise can also help senior maintain their weight.
2. Meet & Mingle
As we get older, it gets harder to meet new people and maintain friendships. One of the easiest ways to do that is to join a group with a common interest. There are all kinds of places for seniors to meet people, from the classes where you learn, to get-togethers where you practice (and maybe show off a little bit). It helps maintain the social bonds we humans need to keep on an even keel.
3. Better Thinking, Better Memory
The mind is the first thing to go, or so some people say about getting older. However, dancing can help you maintain your memory, and your other cognitive functions. You need to learn the steps, and assemble the puzzle of the music and the movements, which is a task you need body and mind for.
4. Fight Depression
If you deal with depression or unpleasant moods for other reasons, you might be surprised to know that dancing is actually used as a form of treatment for mood disorders. So, when you need a boost, put on your favorite song and let your body groove to the music.
5. Increase Balance
Dancing can help to improve balance. This can be especially helpful for seniors who have previously fallen. If you are afraid to dance alone, have a partner dance with you until you regain your confidence.
For more ideas on how to get your senior moving, check out our infographic with balance exercises for seniors!