As January is fast approaching after weeks of celebrating (and eating and drinking through) Christmas and the end of lockdowns, many of us take stock of ourselves and what we achieved through the past 12 months and think about what we'd like to change with a list of optimistic New Years resolutions. Some of these goals are fun, like spending more time with family and friends, reading more or finally getting back to being able to travel. Other goals are much less fun and more focused on getting healthy and active like giving up sugary soft drinks or joining a gym.
At MarShere Dance Studios we believe that New Years resolutions can be both enjoyable AND good for you. A New Years resolution that fills you with excitement is a goal you're much more likely to stick to and lets face it, that New Years resolution to give up Chocolate was always going to be doomed to failure and that gym membership is already gather dust by March.
Taking up dance on the other hand, provides you with a fun activity you can do by yourself or with friends or a partner, that allows you to meet new people, get active, move to music and release the stress of every day life and laugh with people that often will become some of your closest friends.
1. It’s a great form of exercise
After only a few weeks at MarShere Dance classes, our students tell us they feel fitter and stronger than they have in a long time. Dancing tones the muscles and helps you build strength, flexibility, agility and cardio-vascular fitness (often without you even noticing, because you're too busy having fun).
2. You can go at your own pace
If you're anything like us, getting more exercise is often the priority for our New Years resolution. You might be tempted to book yourself into 20 rigorous gym sessions in your first week, and then discovering how hard DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness - crusher of gym dreams) can make just tying up your shoes the next morning. Throwing yourself in at the deep end might seem like a good idea, but if you go too hard to soon you're likely going to throw in the towel even earlier by pushing yourself too far, too soon.
On the other hand, taking up dancing in our Adult Dance classes with MarShere Dance Studios makes a great New Years resolution because you can go at your own pace. You can pick the dance styles you want to learn (Ballroom, New Vogue, Latin or Street Latin), dance in social dance classes or even try a DanceFit or Pilates class. You can choose to come one night or a few, take up Private Lessons or stick with group classes. It's all up to you!
3. You'll meet new people
It's no secret that the older we get, the harder it is to meet people with similar interests particularly when we work busy careers, have children or our children are grown. It's even harder if you've recently moved to a new area or have split up with a spouse or significant other. Social dancing is the perfect place to meet new people and create lasting friendships. MarShere social classes are open to dancers of all ages and levels and provide opportunity for you to meet and socialise with new people in a friendly and welcoming environment.
4. It’ll make you happy; science has proved it!
It’s widely recognised that exercise releases endorphins, leaving you feeling happier as a result. Dancing is a much more enjoyable, light-hearted alternative to hard gym sessions that you dread every time. While most forms of exercise stimulate endorphins, it seems dancing releases more endorphins than typical aerobic movement. Dancing is also more successful at reducing cortisol levels. Since cortisol is a stress hormone, this is another reason that dancing can increase feelings of happiness and relaxation.
Researchers at the Universities of York and Sheffield in the UK conducted experiments where participants chose to either sit and listen to music, exercise on a stationary bike, or dance for 5 minutes. All participants were given cognitive tasks to perform both before and after the music.
“All those who chose to dance displayed problem-solving skills afterwards,” Dr. Peter Lovatt from the University of Hertfordshire explains. “This same study also found that the mood levels of the dancers went up. It shows that dancing along to music even for five minutes can boost happiness and improve creative-thinking patterns.”
Try a group class at one of our MarShere Dance Studios located around Melbourne and the Mornington Peninsula, you will meet new people, find new friends, build your confidence on the dance floor and most importantly have fun. We offer a range of dance styles including Ballroom, New Vogue, Latin, Street Latin, Salsa & Tango, you can even try your first dance lesson for free. You’ve got nothing to lose and plenty to gain!