Do you need to get into shape or burn some calories, but hate going to the gym? If so, then good news: you don't necessarily need weights, exercise bikes, or bench presses to get into shape. One of the best forms of exercise takes place not in the gym, but in a dance studio. Take a look at some reasons why dancing may be the best form of exercise out there.
Dance is a Full Body Exercise
Forget arm day, leg day, or ab day, and give yourself a full body workout all in one session. When you dance, you're moving more than just your legs and feet. When you shake your hips and move your torso, you're using your stomach and back muscle (and having a whole lot more fun than when you do a set of crunches.) When you dip and bend, you're using the combination of gravity and your own body weight to perform weight-bearing exercises.
Twirling, jumping, and swaying are all aerobic exercises, and you also get anaerobic exercise when you balance, squat, or lift another dancer. You get the same benefits to your legs that you get when you run or jog, but put less pressure on your knees while you do it. You'll even find yourself using muscles that are hard to work out any other way besides dancing.
Dance Has Endless Variety
For many people, ordinary workouts are boring. It's easy to get tired of doing the same sets and reps over and over again. With dance, you have a world of activities to choose from.
From formal styles of dancing like ballroom dance and ballet to more modern styles of dance like jazz and hip hop, there are tons of options, and you don't have to stick with just one. Take a swing dancing class this week and a Latin dance class next week. Bring your partner to a line dancing class, and check out a pole dancing class on your own. You can stick with a style for as long as it holds your interest, but there's always another style to try if you don't get bored.
Dance is Social
Ordinary exercise doesn't have to be a solitary activity, but it often works out that way. It's not easy to strike up a friendship when the person next to you is busy focusing on their own exercise machine. Dance is different. You can certainly dance by yourself – and you should, if you feel like it – but many forms of dance are meant to be performed with a partner or a group. Dancers work together to create a performance for the crowd or an enjoyable experience for each other.
The social aspect matters because it's part of what makes dancing fun. You'll return to your dancing classes as much for the camaraderie as for the calories you burn or the adrenaline rush you feel. It's something that you can easily share with a friend or romantic partner, or an activity that can help you make new social connections. Getting healthy is as much about your state of mind as the state of your body, and connecting with other people socially can help you feel healthier, more motivated, and more energized.
If you're ready for a change in the way you work out, check out the classes available at a dance studio near you. You may discover not just a new workout, but a new passion as well. For more information, contact companies like Academy For The Performing Arts.