Dance is just one of the many classes abounding in gyms and studios across the country. It begs a question, ‘Since we can dance anywhere, why take a class to give us the chance to dance?’
The main reason is that the structure of our daily lives has been slowly eliminating the opportunity and existence of naturally healthy activities in our day. Hunkered behind computers which provide their own form of natural development, caught up in online social media like Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and more which provides its own form of socialization and connection leaves many of us bereft of physical movement.
Societies forced to be close to nature still look to the physical body as a means of expression; they naturally use movement which gives health benefit without even seeking it. Song and dance were forms of play and recreation. Hunting, farming, and textile production not only served the needs of our communities, but kept bodies vibrant.
Today we are in transition as human beings running into realms much more global and much less local so and attending all parts of our growth takes conscious effort instead of pleasure being the primary impetus. One of the greatest gifts you can give your children is the gift of physical integration and expression. If your daily lives fail to incorporate such spontaneous movement, turn to a gym.
Dance is a tremendously healthy choice for children. We work on opening up to dance, learning how to connect, or reconnect with our bodies, our emotions and ourselves. As children we are there, but if our lifestyle does not support a healthy integration it will no doubt show up in our bodies over the years to come.
Start your kids off dancing, especially if they do not have natural avenues for using their boundless energy. Dance is a great option for those children not drawn to competitive sports as well. There are many benefits.
• Physical health – Dance increase flexibility, range of motion, stamina and strength. The movements can improve balance, posture, coordination and cardiovascular.
• Socialization – Without direction cues are learned. Kids can learn how to ‘hear’ other kids without words. Fears can be dissolved when a dance is set up to honor all involved and protect against aggressiveness that challenges those less comfortable with the interchange. Dance gives children’s natural compassion to come forward as they move in ways that honor themselves and others. A language can be developed in dance giving children a benefit when it comes to being a part of society. Emotional intelligence is increased.
• Education – Dancing requires practice, discipline and focus. Oftentimes disguised in the movements the skills can develop without it feeling like ‘work,’ which is the last thing we want our children to feel. Some resources purport dancing children to attain higher school test scores, and excel in the science and math fields because of the fruits. But try it out for yourself and see if dance can offer this freedom to your child.
• Self Esteem – When children can experience a certain mastery with their bodies and be affirmed for it by the adults leading the class, self esteem is developed. The right and left brains are engaged in dance so for children to receive approval for their development increases their positive view of themselves. This could well be the most valuable healthy gift of dance for kids!
At Club USA in Littleton, Colorado we take pride in our youth fitness programs. Offering everything from dance and tumbling to interactive games, and even a climbing wall. Click here to contact us and learn more.