With numerous Dancing themed TV gracing our screens these days, you and your kids might feel inspired to get your own dancing shoes on. The good news is that dancing isn’t just fun, it’s a brilliant way to get in shape and stay that way. Now is the time to look for courses or classes which could help get you and your family boogieing.
Dancing for fitness is increasingly popular and you’ll find many local gyms and sports centres will offer classes. There are lots of different options on offer, so knowing what to go for is often the biggest challenge. Here’s a run-down of some of the most popular classes and their benefits:
A dance party atmosphere and fast upbeat music make it difficult not to get moving in a Zumba class. Zumba is choreographed to provide intervals of intensity in both pace of music and type of movements, meaning that class members’ energy expenditure is maximized for calorie and fat-burning benefits.
Zumba is the full-body workout that’s suitable for everyone, with variations including Zumba for kids, Zumba (Gold) for seniors, and even Aqua-Zumba. As well as being incredibly good fun and great for your health, as a group exercise it’s a very sociable way to get in shape.
If ballet still conjures up images of small girls in tutus, you might need to have a rethink. While ballet is undeniably still a winner among children, and particularly girls, there are an increasing number of adult classes too. Not to mention activities like baby ballet, which we’ve found incredibly popular at our centres.
A ballet class will target many different parts of the body, including arms, legs, stomach muscles, feet and ankles. Regular participation can strengthen muscles and improve posture and balance, resulting in a long, lean, elegant figure.
More boys (and men) are also getting in on the act, as the health benefits of ballet are becoming more apparent. Rio Ferdinand famously trained as a ballet dancer and claims it helped his footballing prowess.
Ballroom and Latin
Increasingly popular thanks to programmes like Strictly, ballroom and Latin dancing are suitable for any age, from lessons for kids to tea dances for older people. Whether it’s salsa or foxtrot, there’s bound to be something that takes your fancy.
Like ballet, the elegant outward appearance of these types of dance hide a lot of hard work and calorie burning underneath. In fact, they can burn as much as a session of swimming or cycling. As well as being a great work out, the complexity of learning a series of steps to form the dance can help keep your brain in top condition too.
One of our most popular classes with kids is street dance, and we’re seeing more and more private groups starting up too, such is the hype around it. If you’re not sure what it is, street dance actually covers a broad range of dancing styles based around funk and hip-hop. Popular forms include breakdance, popping and krump.
With squats, turns and jumps forming a regular part of routines, and fast beats being the norm, it’s a great all-body workout with some serious muscle-strengthening credentials. It increases stamina, improves flexibility, develops great concentration and spatial awareness, and often helps boost confidence.
Its improvised style and use of the latest tunes make it a real winner with kids, teenagers and adults alike.
Originally targeted at those in their 30s and 40s (with a soundtrack to match) there are now a few variants of Clubbercise. A recent addition to our centres, we’ve found it’s already going down a storm.
A combination of street dance and aerobics moves, Clubbercise also includes glowsticks and disco lights to create a real club atmosphere. With high and low impact variants, it’s great for beginners and seasoned fitness pros alike. It’s another all body workout that’ll get your heart pumping and those calories burning.
All the rest
From belly dancing and cheerleading, to roller discos, there are a whole range of other dance and fitness classes out there that can help get you and your family in shape. Make sure to explore the options and give different things a try. You’re bound to find one that will make sure you ‘keep dancing’.