Get Your Kids to Dance
I remember my mother telling me stories about when she was young. “When I was just a child”, she’d say, “your grandmother would toss me out of the house and say ‘find something to do, and don’t come back until dinner time.’”
These days, the out-of-doors is more often shunned in favour of lounging on an air-conditioned couch surfing YouTube. This increasingly sedentary lifestyle has resulted in rising obesity rates and related health issues.
Okay, you know I’m going to tell you how great dance is for your child, right? What you may not know is that the benefits of dance for kids extends far beyond simply keeping physically fit.
For example, let’s look at their social lives. Sure, they know Tom, Dick, and Harry on Facebook, but how often do they get together to kick the ball around? By comparison, the benefits of dance is it encourages social interaction with children, great if your 3-to-12-year-old is a bit on the shy side.
According to FamilyTalk Magazine, “dance lessons can help children improve their social and communication skills, learn how to work as part of a team, develop a greater sense of trust and cooperation and make new friends.” And developing and performing new dance skills can be terrific for their self-esteem as well.
Speaking of the mental benefits of dance, dance classes can work wonders for your child’s developing brain, teaching them useful skills like accountability (to their classmates), memory (remembering choreography), persistence (learning that making mistakes is okay), and creativity (learning to move in different ways to music).
It goes without saying that these skills will serve them well in school and the working world. And there other home-related benefits of dance as well. For example, dance is a great channel for your son or daughter’s boundless energy, allowing them to burn it off in more constructive way than say, picking fights with your other child.
And yes, there are emotional benefits of dance too. When your child has multiple outlets to express how they feel, it can more easily come out in constructive, not destructive ways. Dance is just another way to vent whatever feelings they may not be able to express well with words – meaning fewer tantrums later.
Finally, there are the physical benefits of dance – flexibility, physical strength, stamina, improved cardiovascular health, coordination, balance… These never stop being important, but for a growing child, it’s especially crucial to build them early. Like learning a new language, it’s a lot easier to start earlier in life, than when you’re 30 or 40.
Joy of Dance runs numerous classes for kids of all ages, often culminating in a showcase day where they can show off their shiny new skills to their parents. Check us out by pushing here for more information.
About the Author
Ian Crewe has been dancing ballroom for over 18 years, and has a Licentiate in American smooth and rhythm. His passion for dance eventually led him to blogging and the World Wide Web. Ian currently teaches at the Joy of Dance Centre, Toronto, ON, Canada.