Kicking It Up for Your Health

— Written By and last updated by

tfsfornewsarticleWhether you prefer to exercise in the privacy of your own home or at a local gym, you will find dancing is a great way to relieve stress and burn calories. The wonderful part about dancing is that you do not have to follow a particular style to reap the health benefits. You can just turn up the music and start dancing in your living room.

If you are looking for a more organized dance, have you thought about line dancing? While line dancing does have its country and western influence, it does not have to be performed to country music. Line dances are usually easy to learn and include repeating steps, so if you get lost, it easy to find your place in the dance.

Line dancing can help you lose weight, stay flexible, reduce stress and make new friends. Here are a few more benefits of line dancing:

  • Line dancing burns 200 to 375 calories an hour, depending on how fast you dance and how much floor you cover.
  • Line dancing can improve your heart health, breathing and overall quality of life.
  • Line dancing requires a lot of fast movement and good posture, so frequent dancing will help you stabilize and gain better control of your body.
  • Line dancing offers an opportunity to be more social. Being socially engaged leads to increased happiness, reduced stress and a stronger immune system.
  • Line dancing builds confidence and boosts memory by learning complex dance sequences.
  • The more energy you put into a dance, the more vigorous your workout will be.
  • A weekly dance program can increase your energy level.
  • Line dancing helps improve your balance.
  • Line dancing does not require specialized equipment (cowboy boots are recommended but not required), or any prior dance experience.
  • It’s a great activity for all ages.

linedancersfornewsAs with any new exercise routine, start slowly. With line dancing, doing a few steps at first is better than nothing. In time and with practice, you can work up to a faster pace, while adding new steps and memorizing more complicated routines.

The only danger in joining a line dancing class, is that once you start dancing you might not want to stop. Dust off your cowboy boots and join a great group of energetic line dancers, led by Chris Smith, Cheryl and Bob Thomas, every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the SCC – Swain Center, 60 Almond School Rd. Classes are free and are sponsored by the Swain County Cooperative Extension.

There’s another opportunity to line dance at the Swain County Senior Center, 125 Brendle Rd. Shirley Sutton teaches classes every Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. Classes are free.

Phil’s Barn located at 2875 U.S. 19, Bryson City, NC features live music most Saturday nights beginning at 7:00 p.m. and is a great place to showcase your new line dancing skills. There is a small admission fee that covers the cost of the entertainment.