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Seniors Who Dance (and Why!)

Keeping active is important for people of all ages, and for different reasons. With regular exercise, health issues can appear, or worsen, and the effects of aging (lessened mobility, weakness, forgetfulness, insomnia, etc.) can begin to wear down the spirit. To avoid this, and enjoy life to the fullest, it's vital to find an activity that brings you joy.

 

The Physical, Mental, and Emotional Benefits of Dance

One of the most obvious reasons people might choose dance as their avenue to exercise is because it's fun, and almost always involves other people (though it's not required). However, besides the fun, dance is incredibly diverse, which means there is something for everyone! From ballroom dancing, salsa, lyrical, and the classic two-step, there's certain to be a style that is best for your elderly loved one.

 

Below are a few of the physical, mental, and emotional benefits of dance:

 

1. Maintenance and increase in muscle, endurance, and dexterity

 

2. Weight management

 

3. Reduced risk of osteoporosis 

 

4. Improved balance and flexibility

 

5. Maintenance and increase in memory skills

 

6. Boost in confidence/self-esteem

 

7. Social opportunities/relational outlets

 

8. Outlet for both positive and negative emotions and processing

 

Dancing Through Life

Here are a few older adults who still love to dance:

 

Grete Brunvoll, Ballerina, 90

Known as the oldest active ballerina, Grete was born in Norway in 1930. While now, she spends her days teaching and less time performing, she still trains every day and hopes to give a spectacular performance on her 100th birthday.

 

Gus Solomons Jr., 81

A dancer, choreographer, and critic, Gus owns the dance world. His journey was not without struggle, as he had major injuries and feared he would never be able to come back to dance. 50 years later, he is still teaching, choreographing, performing, and continuing on as a powerful force in the dance community.

 

Sandra Rivera, Ballet Hispanico, 66

As an artist-in-residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine for many years, Sandra produced and directed various performances, and was even commissioned to adapt a liturgical Spanish dance in 2008. As a Puerto Rican born in New York, Sandra was raised in a bright culture where dance was an expected part of life, and doesn't plan on stopping any time soon.

 

Germaine Acogny, 77

The mother of African dance, Germaine was born and raised in Senegal, and later moved to France to study ballet and modern dance. Her incredible, transformational career hasn't slowed down for a moment, from developing and recovering the art form, to founding schools. Most recently, she published her own book (2018), and received the Golden Lion for Dance in February 2021.

 

Senior Helpers in Erie

Looking for a helping hand? The Senior Helpers staff has a wealth of resources, including In-Home Care Assessments, Care for Alzheimer's, Dementia, Parkinson's, and Chronic diseases. All Care Companions are professionally trained, and affordable. To find out what type of care is right for your loved one, you can contact us or find more blogs like this by following this link.