Dance Your Way to Fitness
Fun and Fit
There's a reason many women are turning to dance classes for health benefits. You'll notice an immediate difference in poise and posture, and, on average, an hour of intense dancing can burn 200-400 calories.
"Dance training changes the way you move and the way you carry yourself," says Ofelia de la Valette, owner of Atlanta's Dance 101. "It improves self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-image, and that's a powerful thing."
Dance 101 is filled with students at all ages and skill levels, including women who have never set foot on a dance floor. "Everyone can benefit from dance, regardless of age, weight, or fitness level," Ofelia says. "Dancing is like taking a mini vacation from the stress of the everyday―you have to be in the moment."
Jazz is a great choice for new dancers. You'll work multiple muscle groups―resulting in a total body workout.
Salsa strengthens your calves, thighs, buttocks, abs, and arms and provides a powerful cardio punch.
Forward and backward movements engage leg muscles in ballroom dancing. Learning proper form strengthens the back, shoulders, and arms. The dance form also provides an emotional boost from social interaction with a partner.
Tap is the most aerobic form of dance, focusing on lower-body conditioning. The dance form engages the mind, strengthens rhythm, and increases the speed of physical movement.
Hip-hop is a fast-paced workout that emphasizes the lower body. It's also a good choice for optimum weight loss.
Ballet builds balance, strength, and poise through a series of simple moves. Expect to gain lean (not bulky) muscle, improve posture and flexibility, and relieve stress.
Dance Studios Near You
- LA GRANGE, KY: All That Dance Studio: allthatdancelouisville.com or 502-671-7874. Emphasis on ballroom dancing, with a 3,000-square-foot dance floor.
- ROCKVILLE, MD: Rendezvous Social Dance & Fitness Club: dance911.com or 301-468-2582. Ballroom dance and dance aerobics (includes a wide variety of styles).
- ATLANTA, GA: Dance 101: dance101.org or 404-542-3887. Offers "Discover"-level classes for beginners, as well as more advanced options. Popular classes include Hip-Hop Ballet and Latin Jazz.
- NASHVILLE, TN: DanceQuest: dancequestllc.com or 615-333-1551. Offers partner dances ranging from the Viennese Waltz to the 1970s favorite The Hustle.
- DALLAS, TX: Move Studio: movestudio.com or 972-732-0206. Offers a variety of classes from Bollywood Funk to Cardio Latin.