Planning to lose all those extra calories but hate to slog it out in a gym?
And even walking is not your cup of tea? Well, then dance yourself to a healthy body. Dance also has many advantages over exercise. You can set your own pace, a slow foxtrot is no more energetic than walking, while a salsa will really get your heart pumping. It’s great fun too. Dancing...
Protects your heart
Cardiovascular experts recommend that we all do 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity for heart health. Dance uses oxygen, burns calories and increases your heart’s workload, so it's ideal.
Lowers blood fats
A study of men and women aged 60 to 82, who were healthy but didn’t exercise, found out that regular dancing reduces levels of unhealthy blood fats associated with furring of the arteries after just five months.
Helps you lose weight
US research shows that a vigorous dance class can burn as many calories as a gym workout. Calories danced away per hour
Belly dancing: 180-300
Jive/swing dance: 250-400 Salsa: 400
Shapes you up
Regular dance shapes the muscles, particularly in the legs and buttocks, and improves one's posture.
Strengthens your bones
One woman in four and one man in eight is at risk of osteoporosis. Dancing slightly jars the bones, thereby encouraging the body to strengthen bones.
Learning to control your breath required in most kinds of dance increases the capacity of your lungs, and improves stamina and concentration.
People who dance regularly get fewer minor viral illnesses like colds and flu.
Sharpens your mind
Dancing improves blood flow to your brain, which helps keep it in good shape. Learning new routines encourages the brain to produce new dendrites (connections between nerve cells), which help your brain store and retrieve information more easily.
Increases strength and stamina
Dance combines aerobic activity with weight bearing which will boost your strength and endurance. A study of female professional dancers found they had the same percentage of slow-twitch muscle fibres as top-level female runners or cross country athletes.