You may wonder why I started off with dance as your first small step to weight loss. I could have suggested you start walking or go to the gym or any number of ways to become more active and burn those calories. But dancing isn’t just for burning calories. Dancing can change your attitude and change your outlook. Dancing can improve your mood and reduce stress.
Dancing also has been shown to improve memory and balance, strengthen decision-making skills, and increase levels of serotonin (that feel-good hormone that helps emotional balance). Dancing may even spark your creative side.
The studies that have been done on how dance affects are mental and physical well-being have looked at more time spent dancing then just one song a day, but we’re talking small steps here so start with one song.
If you’re interested in moving to more than one song, check out local opportunities to move and groove with others. Your local gym may have a Zumba® (make sure you don’t go deaf while you’re working to get the rest of you healthier though) or a dance exercise class. My gym has line dancing and even a class to move to the beat in the pool. Join a community group for ballroom or line dancing. You usually don’t have to be part of a couple to enjoy, but if you can get your partner to go, that’s another great benefit.
If you’re not quite ready to step out and move your groove thing in public, check out YouTube. They have instructional videos to show you how and where to step and some good tunes to dance to.
So put this blog down, turn up the music and dance to one song today. Keep dancing to at least one song every day for the next 31 days (or 31 years).
8 Tips to Feel Better About Yourself by Gretchen Rubin
Dancing and the Brain from the Harvard Mahoney Neuroscience Institute, And the Brain series
Serotonin: What It is and Why It's Important for Weight Loss by Judith J. Wurtman Ph.D, Psychology Today