Dancing and Health – Research

Dancing and Health :

A 2003 study reported that of a range of physical (swimming, cycling, dancing) and mental (reading, playing board games or a musical instrument) activities, dancing was associated with the greatest reduction in the risk of developing dementia.

Learning the Argentine tango was found to be better at improving the mobility of Parkinson's disease sufferers than an exercise class(results that were mirrored in a subsequent study of tai chi). Tango dancing was also found to be more effective than mindfulness meditation or a waiting-list control in treating psychological stress, anxiety, and depression.

A 2014 meta-analysis of twenty-three dance and dance movement therapy studies reported increased quality of life, well-being, mood, body image, and a reduction in depression and anxiety.

A Swedish study of teenage girls suffering from stress and symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, anxiety, depression, stomach pain, and musculoskeletal pain, found improvements across all measures in those who attended dance classes(twice weekly for eight months) compared to a non-dancing control group.

In summarising the benefits of dance, the UK's Department for Culture, Media and Sport state that it can result in a healthier heart and lungs, stronger muscles and bones( with a reduced risk of osteoporosis), better coordination, flexibility, agility, and balance, increased physical and self-confidence, improved mental functioning, better weight management, and reduced social isolation and exclusion.