Finding a fun way to lose weight can be hard. Luckily, there are some great, fun and funky fitness programs that not only offer an effective workout but teach you some new dance moves as well.
Dance fitness is a recent phenomenon and there are a lot of dance workouts out there, but what do they really do? Are there any benefits to these fitness routines? According to the AARP, dance workouts can have a great impact on physical fitness and health. Like other fitness activities, such as brisk walking, cycling or aerobics, dancing can help strengthen bones and muscles, tone your entire body, improve your posture and balance, increase your stamina and flexibility, reduce stress and tension, and ward off illnesses like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, osteoporosis, and depression.
1. Dance workouts are a great way to lose weight.
Regular dance builds lean muscle, and muscle burns calories even when you aren't active. Ballet barre and center exercises tone and strengthen muscles required for leg extensions, jumps and leaps. Jazz works your legs and core for those graceful and spectacular bends. Hip-hop and step dancing build muscles for explosive moves and high-intensity endurance. A half-hour -- or more -- of dance each day tones your body and boosts your metabolism. According to the Mayo Clinic, muscle mass uses more calories than fat tissue and is a major contributor to weight loss.
How much weight you lose depends on your weight, age, gender, body type and style of dance. Since most classes last between 45 minutes and an hour or more, your calorie expenditure from dancing can add up.
2. Dance workouts make you happier.
Dancing releases a flow of mood-improving chemicals meaning that shaking away the pounds can make you feel good inside and out. Just one dance session can slay depression more than vigorous exercise or listening to upbeat music, according to a study in The Arts in Psychotherapy. Dancing and socializing with others also leads to less stress and stronger social bonds, key factors in both mental and physical health, says Verghese.
3. Dance workouts are good for your heart.
According to a study in Circulation: Heart Failure people with cardiac conditions who danced for just 20 minutes three times a week saw their heart health improve significantly more than those who stuck to traditional cardio workouts.
4. Dance workouts help with aging.
When researchers at the National Osteoporosis Foundation compared dancers with non-dancers, they found evidence that dancing may preserve both motor skills and perceptual abilities.
5. Dance workouts are good for your mind.
But perhaps the coolest part about dance workouts is that it saves your mind—literally. Dancing gives your memory, coordination, and focus areas an intense workout, leading to stronger synapses and beefed-up gray matter. Therefore dancers can be sharper in the short term and less likely to succumb to brain diseases in the long run. A New England Journal of Medicine study of 11 physical activities found that dancing was the only one that lowered dementia risk by 76 percent.
All dance workouts aren’t the same. Each workout includes its own routine and typically is choreographed to various types of background music.
Looking for a dance workout with a twist? An alternative to traditional dance fitness programs is a product called Shazzy Fitness. Shazzy Fitness is a faith-based fun and funky praise dance workout DVD that includes Christian hip-hop songs in all of the routines. The workouts are upbeat, fun and engage users in different levels of exercise.
If you found this blog post useful or would like to add something, please leave your comments below. Also, we'd love to hear your Shazzy Fitness feedback. You can email us at feedback@shazzyFitness.com.