Dance the Night Away

(The following is adapted from an article on prevention of Alzheimer’s.)

If brain fitness awards were given to types of fitness pursuits, dance would earn the first-place trophy year after year after year. That’s because it combines several brain-health prescriptions into one. If you dance with a group (think square dancing) or a partner (think round dancing), you are exercising social smarts. If you are learning new steps, you’re also boosting your intellectual fitness. Dance, by nature is fun, which helps to reduce stress. Ballroom dancers have performed higher on tests of cognition than did non-dancers (think of all the calls square dancers have to learn and remember), and competitive ballroom dancers have scored higher on many different measures of cognitive performance, including reaction time (think of how our reaction time is constantly being tested by listening to the caller’s instructions).


Jane Jones
President, Greater Cincinnati Dance Federation