Fast beats, quick steps and a Latin flair are all characteristics of salsa dancing. While it makes for a fun night out with friends, it can also be a great way to get healthy and fit. And the best part of it is, the exercise doesn’t feel like exercise at all because you’re having so much fun doing it! Here are the top 10 health benefits of salsa dancing:
Bone and joint health: Dance aids in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis for men and women. For women during post-menopause, there can be a significant drop in estrogen levels, which stops calcium from being absorbed into the bones. Dancing can also help keep joints lubricated in order to prevent arthritis.
Weight loss: Dance exercises our bodies to allow for increased circulation. It helps us burn those calories away, while improving our stamina. It is estimated that dance burns anywhere from 5 to 10 calories per minute depending on speed and intensity.
Muscle targeting: Salsa focuses on exercising all major muscle groups. The glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, calves and core will be exercised relatively aggressively in order to perform the various step sequences. The upper body and arms must maintain specific positions, so they will receive a workout as well, albeit to a lesser degree.
Keeps your body “young”: Dancing is tremendously beneficial in keeping you young. It slows the aging process immensely. It benefits your heart, cardiovascular system and lung capacity. The muscle exertion and breathing rates of dancers performing in one dance competition is equivalent to those of cyclists, swimmers and an Olympic-level 800-meter runner.
Lowers cholesterol: New research has discovered that it is necessary to measure both good and bad cholesterol levels when determining your health. Dancing aids in lipid control, which raises HDL (good cholesterol) and lowers LDL (bad cholesterol). Dancing is also great for diabetics because it aids in blood sugar control.
Improved balance: Balancing yourself in one position may be easy, but balancing in the numerous types of positions involved in dancing is much more difficult. Dancers have mastered the ability to balance themselves in a number of positions. This strengthens our stabilizer muscles, while protecting our core and keeping us less prone to injury in our daily lives. Dancing also aids in coordination and helps strengthen our reflexes. It is a great way to keep our central nervous system and peripheral nervous system in tip-top shape by improving the connection of our bodies to our mind.
Stronger personal relationships: Married? Trouble with family? You and your significant other lost that spark? Dance is the answer. It helps you relate to others in a passionate, honest, and unique way that will not only re-kindle emotions, but also promote communication between you and your partner.
Strengthen social skills: Dancing is recreational and entertaining. It creates a social life for us, while affording us the opportunity to make new friends.
Improved memory: Dance improves our memory by making us recall steps, routines and dance patterns, making it a great mental exercise for our brains. The big benefit is that increasing mental exercise keeps your mind young, quick, alert and open.
Improved emotional health: Dance elevates our mood by raising our endorphin levels. This is what allows us to heal stress and depression – two of our immune system’s biggest enemies! It helps us establish our self-confidence and self-discipline. It improves the harmony between our mind and body, giving us a sense of well-being.
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