I’ve always loved to dance. I’ve had an inkling that dancing had greater benefits than simply exercise or stress relief. It’s always made me feel great (yes, it increases serotonin in the brain), and now it’s been proven that frequent dancing apparently makes us smarter!
I came across an article written by Richard Powers for Stanford University that clearly explains a study conducted by The New England Journal of Medicine on the effects of recreational activities on mental acuity in aging. Here’s Powers’ elucidation in a nutshell:
Albert Einstein College of Medicine conducted a 21-year study of senior citizens, 75 and older, to measure mental acuity in aging by monitoring rates of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.
Scientists wanted to see if any physical or cognitive recreational activities influenced mental keenness. They studied mental activities (reading books, writing, doing crossword puzzles, playing cards and musical instruments) as well as physical (playing tennis or golf, swimming, bicycling, dancing, walking, and doing housework.)
One of the surprises of the study was that almost none of the physical activities appeared to offer any protection against dementia. There can absolutely be health benefits, but the focus of the study was the mind, in particular memory. There was one important exception however: the only physical activity to offer protection against dementia was frequent – drum roll please – dancing!
Natural leather soles make these GRV kicks the king of the dance floor.
Here are some of the studies’ results:
Reading: 35% reduced risk of dementia
Bicycling and swimming: 0%
Doing crossword puzzles at least four days a week: 47%
Playing golf: 0%
Dancing frequently: 76%
Dancing was the greatest risk reduction of any activity studied, cognitive or physical.
The basic conclusion is that dancing forces the brain to create new neural pathways. Dancing integrates several brain functions at once — kinesthetic, rational, musical, and emotional — further increasing your neural connectivity.
If you’ve ever needed a smart “reason” to get on the dance floor, you now have one. Let’s boogie!
Preorder a pair on the GRV Kickstarter campaign and be one of the first to really get down on the dance floor.
Subscribe for a chance to win a free pair of shoes.
Step into your greatness! Check out my coaching programs.