Here are five reasons why a dance education - whether it be a few classes or years of training - can benefit students for a lifetime.
1. Confidence and Expression
Dancing in a positive, encouraging environment can help students develop a healthy sense of confidence and expression. Through dance, students gain a greater understanding of nonverbal communication and expression through movement and body language.
2. Physical Fitness
Dancing is one of the most fun ways to achieve and maintain physical fitness! Involving both aerobic and anaerobic activity, dance promotes flexibility, strength, muscle tone, and fine motor skills. Regular participation in dance lessons can also improve posture and coordination.
In this art form, the body is the dancer’s instrument. Through dance training, students also learn the importance of caring for their instrument and treating their bodies well.
In dance, students experience firsthand the positive effects of their hard work! Improvement and progress in dance take time, and this teaches students valuable character building lessons in patience and perseverance. As a result, dance provides a natural environment for students to develop a lifelong enjoyment and appreciation for the rewards of self-discipline and hard work.
4. Strong Community and Friendships
Dance lessons are also a great way to develop strong community and friendships! These tend to develop easily at dance among students and families based on regular interactions at the studio along with strong shared interests and goals. Through dance classes and performances, students learn how to work in a team and share many memorable moments together.
5. Lifelong Benefits
Dancing has many, many lifelong benefits for people of all ages - some of which we are just beginning to research and discover! We currently know that dancing affects the development of the brain (in a positive way) and studies have shown that dance can even increase mental acuity in older adults.
Dancing promotes emotional and psychological health. Dance can be therapeutic and restorative, and can reduce anxiety. Harvard Medical School’s David Kahn notes that the positive effects of physical activity on the brain, cognitive functioning, and age-related problems are undeniable, “but dancing adds another aspect to exercise and its effect on our bodies and brains because it is a joyous activity."
Dancers also naturally develop some of the most crucial job skills needed in the 21st century. With the rapid advancement of technology, noncognitive skills such as communication, innovation, and problem solving are increasingly more important. Dance Magazine’s Kelsey McFalls explains, “As practitioners of non-verbal communication, dancers have strong interpersonal, team-working skills and have the ability to interpret and organize abstract concepts through visual learning.”