I was going to skip my Latin Rhythm dance class this morning. I had so many reasons and justifications - 'I was really tired, my back was sore, I had many meetings to attend, I had a blog to write and lots to do at work .. yadi-yadi-ya'
But I knew from previous experience that I would feel much better after 60 minutes of latin rhythm dancing. So I chose to put on my dancing shoes and went to the class. And, yes, I did feel more alive, the effect on my mood was amazing and it gave me the energy I needed to last the entire day. Without a doubt, dancing helped me jump my mood and spirit to overdrive..... not just vibrant and lively, but more energetic, clear headed and better prepared than I would have been otherwise to tackle my hectic schedule.
There is nothing that enhances my mood like dancing with complete abandon to my favorite latin rhythm songs. It is impossible to dance and not feel happy and more energetic. It's transformative. It alters our vibration, moving us from stagnant energy to generative energy.
A major study added to the growing evidence that stimulating our mind by dancing can increase cognitive acuity at all ages. One of the recent studies that have proven the benefits of dancing on the brain was conducted by researchers from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. The study, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine, shows that dance is the best exercise to improve a person’s cognitive skills since the cognitive processes are exercised in more ways than one.
According to this research, our mental acuity increases best when we have to make rapid-fire decisions and that dancing integrates several brain functions at once — kinesthetic, rational, musical, and emotional — further increasing your neural connectivity. The study also discovered that the only form of physical activity that can ward off Alzheimer's disease and offered protection against dementia, was dancing.
It was one of those aha moments. I recognized that when I was feeling low and uninspired, dancing and moving my body generated a positive and restorative effect. The dynamism required in learning the dance routines – for example, what step we need to do next – paves the way for new neural paths that make information transmission faster and better. Such activities also help me stay flexible and fit.