Dancers High?  What is it?

Brain Image

Line Dancing helps with the brain

Physical exercise is not just good for our bodies but also for our brains.  It raises the levels of serotonin thereby making us feel good – Runners call it a runners high.
I call it a Line Dancers High.  However this good feeling doesn’t actually stop losing the sharpness of our minds.

I read an article recently stating that deteriorating mental sharpness is reduced by up to 76% by the fun activity of frequent Dancing.  This was the result from a study a few years ago published in the New England Journal of Medicine (funded by the National Institute of Aging).  What they set out to discover was which physical / mental  activities help reduce the risk of losing mental awareness and sharpness.

What happens in frequent dancing is we rewire our neural pathways that have been lost over time.  And studies since indicate it actually helps develop NEW pathways.  How good is that!!

It is not just enough to get out on the dance floor and freestyle (mindlessly bop around) we need to think at the same time.  Yep brain activity has also been found to improve and or repair neural pathways.

If you are yet to get involved in line dancing you should know that each song has a different dance associated with it – therefore your brain also gets a good workout when you line dance. (See article Benefits of Line Dancing)

In line dancing we can do things to enhance this process.

  • Keep learning new line dance routines.
  • Add a bit of flair – Add new steps (that fit the routine)
  • Be spontaneous.
  • Be creative.
  • Teach Line dances to others.
  • Challenge Yourself

Outside line dancing we can also try to learn something new, meditate, read more, do puzzles, anything to stimulate the ole gray matter.

Here’s a bit of fun I discovered in my travels.

Quote by Robert Frost

“The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts working the moment you get up and does not stop until you get into the office.”

So join a class, get hold of a DVD and most importantly have fun.

Happy Dancing
Paul

PS I searched the internet for this particular study but only came up with a study (and some references to it) that referred to dancing slowing / reducing the onset of dementia by 63% (not 73%).