WHY SHOULD KIDS DANCE?
Following on from my post from a few weeks back where I wrote about reasons why we all should definitely dance (see here – https://dancesmilelive.com/why-you-should-dance/ ), today I wanted to tell you about all the benefits of dance for young kids and how great it would be if every child would get the opportunity to participate at dance classes at least for some time and the amazing things this beautiful activity can do for children.
Ok, so as a ballroom dancer I’m definitely a bit biased as for me it’s the best thing in the world but check below for my arguments and you’ll see dancing is a pretty cool activity for your child. Apart from being fun and pretty to look at, here are my top 3 reasons why kids should dance.
“IT IMPROVES PHYSICAL HEALTH”
Dancing is a pretty great activity for children as regular practice increases flexibility improves posture and physical strength and improves muscle tone. Many children come to first dance lessons with extremely bad postures, feet turned in or out excessively and unable to execute basic movements required when running or jumping correctly and poor balance is a common issue. Through dancing, we can correct such mistakes and give children a better sense of how to move and control their bodies.
Many children I teach come to dance classes with light forms of Asthma and for the most part, they can stop using their medicine or reduce their intake drastically. Cardiovascular and respiratory systems tick along better if children partake in regular dance lessons.
Another common problem with today’s kids is weight…unfortunately the number of children who are overweight is on the rise and dancing is hugely beneficial for weight loss.
There are benefits for the mental health of children as well, but I’ve decided to do a separate post on that a bit later on. For now, trust me when I say that like any other physical activity dancing releases endorphins, also known as happiness hormones. So, if you want a happy, smiling child make sure they get lots of exercises. Dancing is just the prettiest one 😊
“IT IMPROVES SELF-ESTEEM”
Learning new skills, mastering new movements and becoming part of a group with shared interests and joy for common activity boosts children’s sense of achievement and improves their self-esteem. Do the research and choose the right teacher who knows how to motivate and encourage children to reach higher and work that little bit harder all the while making sure lessons stay fun and inspiring.
I remember how happy I was coming back home from my lessons as a child and being able to demonstrate the new figures for my parents. I put on entire shows in our living room and bounced around with all the grace and coordination of a typical 5-year-old. I probably didn’t do the greatest job in the world but I remember the joy of being able to recall all the steps and showing off what I’ve learned. And do choose a dance school which gives children a chance to perform at least a couple of times per year as those moments of standing on the stage, taking your first bow and hearing the applause for the very first time are, quite simply, priceless.
Ballroom dancing is a very educational activity for children. At the very beginning, they learn how to function in a group and later learn from a very young age how to communicate and work with the opposite sex. Girls and boys learn to hold hands, speak to each other respectfully and get used to the idea that it’s perfectly ok for girls & boys to be friends. They learn that effort is required to obtain improvement and that applause and good results need to be learned and worked for.
Above all, what being a dancer taught me was how to manage my time. As I became more and more serious about my dancing path I realised that if I wanted to practice as much as I needed to, attend competitions and workshops and keep my school grades up (as was required by my parents and rightfully so) I had to learn how to plan my days in order to fit it all in. Plus, like every child I wanted to attend birthday parties, go to the movies and just go out and climb trees. I’ve learned time management as I went along and I couldn’t be more grateful today.