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Impact of the Dance as Education Essay

1. introduction.

Dance has been an important form of expression throughout the centuries. Its importance has been felt in many types of cultures and civilizations. Throughout history, those who have sought to teach and enlighten have recognized the value of dance. It has been used in teaching ceremonies, initiation rites, public festivals, storytelling, and to celebrate the beginning of new life in the form of marriage. Many educators have noticed that the process of dance is a natural way of learning and socializing. As the years have gone by, dance and the associated arts have, although been enjoyed, they have often been taken less seriously as forms of developing minds and have been pushed aside for more formal subjects. This essay, using a literature review methodology, will argue the importance of dance in education and prove that dance is a valid form of learning. The purpose of this essay is to show the positive effects of using dance in education and to argue that dance is a valid form of education. By posing several arguments and providing examples from credible resources, this essay will attempt to convince the reader that dance should not be pushed aside and should be embraced as its benefits in developing minds are just as important as other subjects. At the same time, providing a balanced argument, discussing some of the negatives of dance in education in order to present a well-rounded argument, addressing both benefits and detriments of using dance as education. In doing so, it is intended that those with preconceived notions that dance is not a serious form of learning will change their minds. The scope of this essay is relevant to the present, which is greatly influenced by global trends towards education policies since the 1980s. With a developing understanding of child development, educators have more recently been looking towards teaching holistically and are seeking more ways of encouraging active learning, the developing minds of children and young people, and providing multiple and diverse methods of learning suited to different individuals and groups. This has led to a significant increase in interest in what has been termed "alternative educations" of which specific interest is focused on using the arts as a means of developing minds.

1.1 Importance of dance in education

Dance has been incorporated into Western education for centuries, and it is widely recognized for its value in education. Why is it that dance is valued so highly in education, and in what ways does dance empower students? Presently, many individuals and organizations continue to question the status of dance in education. Research shows that there are numerous benefits of dance education on students. According to Nationwide Better Health, a division of Nationwide Children's Hospital, "children who are physically active on a regular basis are stronger, have a leaner body, have a lower fat composition, and are less likely to become overweight. An early start to physical activity is more likely to become a lifelong healthy habit." While there are many forms of dance, the best form of dance for students is through dance education in schools, which is an important part of a student's overall education and lifelong learning. This is where students obtain a comprehensive education with the elements of dance, which is kinesthetic and thus considered a "hands-on" learning experience. Students need to be involved in kinesthetic learning in order for it to be effective, and to develop a comprehensive understanding of the material. This is often not the case with dance as there is a wide variation in the way it is taught in schools, and opportunities for students to receive dance education are limited.

1.2 Purpose of the essay

Resource Poor Setting of Dance in India takes the obvious reasons of the resource poor setting of dance at its explicit subject. The book reveals the terrible state of affairs suffered by most classical dancers in India today. From her interviews and personal experience, the author describes the lives of artists who are so starved of support that they cannot hope to make a living from their art and must even take up employment as low paid clerical workers or teachers to fund their dance. Others may abandon art altogether in favor of the higher status, more immediately profitable job, most often outside of their dance training. The central dilemma faced by these artists, that dance is a financially crippling career but too demanding to be a part-time pursuit, is one of crisis proportions and is explored throughout the book. This impossibility of maintaining a high standard of dance in a financial climate that often dictates a ministering to the lowest common denominator with a view to financial expediency, is nowhere more explicit than in the stories the dancers tell of their fruitless attempts to gain the small arts council grants that are available at regional and national levels. The view of officials, often artistically unqualified and considering dance an unviable career option, is that these dancers are talented 'hobbyists' who can continue to teach if they have the time from their 'real jobs'. This is not only a blow to the dancers' self-esteem but a symptom of dance's poor standing in the educational hierarchy of a country where the arts make up only 0.085% of government expenditure.

1.3 Scope of the essay

Therefore, it is crucial that we discuss in this essay how dance as a form of art is being used in educating our children in the schools of Malaysia. We shall see how it is being used as an effective tool for teaching and learning and how dance is a subject of value. We will take a look at how the education syllabus for dance has developed through the years and what the education system in Malaysia is offering to provide a solid foundation with proficiency in dance. Finally, we will see how this impacts the future of dance in the country. This essay will not discuss the forms of dance that are being taught in the Malaysian schools as dance can be anything that involves movement to express ideas and emotions. This essay is restricted to the forms of dance that the western education has identified as either creative dance or performance dance, which involves aesthetic and kinaesthetic movement to express an idea, emotion or concept usually in art and nonverbal theatrical dance stage. At the end of this essay, it is hoped that educators and parents alike will be able to better understand the value of dance as a subject in the Malaysian education system. There is great potential for the future of dance in Malaysia, and proper understanding of how to use the right approach in educating our children will lead us to a brighter future with the arts. This essay will also serve as a reference or guide to educators, which will enable them to plan a much more effective curriculum to teach dance.

2. Historical Background of Dance in Education

The early origins of dance in education thesis begin by seeing the enduring evidence of dance in education as a means to engage the learner physically, emotionally, and intellectually, which dates back to Ancient Greece. The Greeks used music and dance as an integral part of a young person's education to develop an individual's appreciation of aesthetic experiences and to understand the importance of rhythm and movement as a base for all forms of learning. In Minoan and Mycenaean civilization, dance was a way to promote physical fitness and improve the sense of community spirit between individuals in simple yet significantly meaningful forms, relating to the young and old, rich and poor. Dance in the medieval, Renaissance, and modern periods also had a significant presence in education, both informal and formal. Feigue's Dance: An Incomplete History proves that dance was a widely extended notion among the learning and lives of the middle class and aristocratic society for adolescents and young adults. By the 18th and 19th centuries, Europe and the United States, calisthenic and gymnastic educational movements began that utilized dance as a means for physical fitness and personal growth, a concept that was prolonged through the 20th century.

2.1 Early origins of dance in education

The early origins of dance in education are an extension of the basic reasons for dance itself. From the earliest times, dance was utilized for social interaction and teaching, but at some point the two diverged in purpose. Dance persisted as a social activity, but became a demeaning one for a higher social or educational class, while also retaining its original purposes as a cheap and effective means of exercise. The use of dance as a teaching and exercise tool in early European education was inconsistent. However, it was particularly valued in ancient Greece because of the belief in the close relationship between a sound mind and a sound body, which propelled a movement to include more physical education in the training of youth, which included dance. Plato was a strong advocate for dance and physical education, which led to the inclusion of dance in The Republic. In his work, he proposed and described a system of movement education that was in many ways ahead of its time, and still rings true today. He proposed an onomatopoeic dance language to aid the learning of music and greater integration of the two arts, education in gymnastics by methods of instruction rather than correction through strength and endurance from youth to age, and finally physical education for women. This movement towards system and intellectual activity in dance did not last, and with the fall of the Roman Empire dance was abandoned by the educated classes and degenerated into folk dance.

2.2 Evolution of dance as a form of education

Era in which the dance originated as an educational tool is difficult to trace back. However, the history of utilizing it as a means of an expressive form and developing the understanding and knowledge of children can be dated as far back as 1830. It was Francois Delsarte who suggested the dance as the ideal form from which to develop and train the physical body. He had a vision that, by the use of certain exercises, a whole system of physical culture might be developed, giving the body a high degree of expressiveness and ability. His theories did result in the creation of new gymnastic exercises based on his system of movement, many of which were like modified forms of dance. These were widely accepted and used in Germany, where Emile Jaques-Dalcroze was studying the effects of music and rhythm on human movement at the same time. In late 1905, Dalcroze began giving classes at the Geneva Music Conservatory for his new approach that used movement as a means of expression through which to teach music fundamentals. The success of the classes caused him to expand his work, and in 1910 he opened his own school, the Institute Jaques-Dalcroze, where he continued to develop his method, which included the extensive use of Eurhythmics, a system using rhythmic movement to teach musical concepts. Today, Eurhythmics is a required course for all music students at the conservatory in Geneva and is taught in numerous institutions in Europe, the United States, and Japan.

3. Benefits of Dance as Education

Dance is a form of education that promotes physical movement. It has practically every physical bonus, ranging from flexibility to strength and endurance. Dance gets the body moving and gives the excuse to move, something that many people lack in today's society. The bad eating habits that many people have today lead to weight gain and eventually obesity. This obesity leads to many other diseases and disorders. Dance can be a fun way to combat this country's rising obesity problem. Specific types of dance can have an astounding effect on particular areas of the body. Belly dancing, for example, a very feminine, sensual dance, works the core muscles of the body in ways most people do not do in their everyday life. This type of dance can provide a great workout for the core muscle group, which can help prevent or alleviate back problems. Dance is, believe it or not, an academic subject. It has been proven that children who participate in dance are more likely to achieve higher grades in both standardized testing and in the classroom. For many children, it's hard to sit still, pay attention, and learn for hours on end, but they'll do it in a class they enjoy. Dance is proven to increase attentiveness in children in the academic setting. It allows the release of energy in a positive way, which can in turn help with behavior in the classroom. An article from The New Champions states a connection between the arts and learning. "Gardiner also found that 'intelligence is multi-modal' and that by developing a variety of modes of cognitive learning throughout the curriculum, standardized test scores improve." Dance can improve the test scores of students by providing this alternative cognitive mode. It's a fun way to learn and can be a mentally stimulating activity. Intelligence is multi-modal. Any educator at any level of education can and should use various modes of teaching. Like any other time, the goal of learning in physical education is to improve student understanding. This can be done more efficiently through the use of high-quality pedagogy.

3.1 Physical benefits of dance in education

Cardiorespiratory fitness. This was done with a sample group of boys and girls ranging from 5-18 years of age. The children were tested in a 15-minute lesson of creative dance class which consisted of "Rhythmic movement to music", flexibility exercises, and walking and running games. After the lesson each child was tested for heart rate and maximal oxygen consumption. The study concluded that dance lessons were at least as effective as typical physical education in promoting healthy physiologic changes related to physical fitness. Aerobic capacity increased significantly, and heart rates were in the optimal range for conditioning, and because of the various types turn-taking activities observed, dance lessons may be able to bring about positive changes in body composition of a child. This is yet another important finding as it is critical that children accustom a healthy and active lifestyle early on in their lives to prevent risk of health issues later on. Another study completed by Gupta et al. (1998) measured the effects of an 8-week creative dance program on flexibility and balance in a group of elderly women. This is important because after the age of 30, there is about a 10% reduction of flexibility in every decade of life. Flexibility and balance were measured pre and post intervention using sit and reach test, and Tinetti tool performance. Results showed that dance increased flexibility and balance in the elderly women. Balance has been identified as an important aspect in dance, as good balance can prevent falls and injury in elderly people. This study also further confirms past literature stating that dance has a positive impact on physical fitness components such as flexibility and balance. Another study by Oliver et al. (2009) tested the effects of a clinical trial of partnered dance and weight change within 5 months. The trial was done with 51 inactive adults aged 65-75 and was tested with a series of group and private lessons. Weight change was calculated before and after the intervention. The study concluded that partnered dance can be an effective method for weight maintenance. This is an interesting find because in relation to average physical education and sport, aerobic exercises often show a decrease in weight and can be an unenjoyable task to those who are forced to do it out of requirement, whereas this study shows that dance, a fun and social activity can still have an impact on weight maintenance without the focus of direct weight loss. Overall these studies show that the physical benefits of dance surpass those of typical physical education and are even effective in many special populations with needs for reconditioning of various physical ailments. These studies also provide evidence that dance is an effective method for physical activity and fitness across the entire life span. This is significant considering constant budget cuts of arts programs in schools, possibly to a level where children may not have the opportunity for dance as a physical activity and need to be taken into consideration.

3.2 Cognitive benefits of dance in education

There is strong evidence that suggests that dance can foster a range of cognitive abilities which are particularly or only relevant in the learning and creative processes in dance. In a study undertaken by Culham and Heywood (2001), they aimed to show the differences between the use of mental imagery and visual perception. They created a task in which participants were asked to view a series of movements and make immediate judgments in relation to the direction of the movements. In comparison to a control group, dancers were both faster and more accurate in their responses, suggesting more effective and efficient use of visual perception to identify and discriminate movement patterns. Dancers were also able to use an imaginal perspective effectively and demonstrated a superior ability to set, maintain, and adjust the visualization in their "mind's eye". The results of this study are significant as they provide evidence that dancers are capable of developing enhanced skills in a vital area of motor learning and performance without the actual physical execution of the movement. The proficiency in which dancers can use mental imagery may have a subsequent effect on the way in which they are best taught movement. The enhanced ability to learn and understand movement may have a spin-off into everyday tasks where they are capable of learning it more quickly and remembering it better than their non-dancer counterparts. This area of cognitive process is still very much part of movement and the defining of a possible link between the two is an important area for future research.

3.3 Emotional and social benefits of dance in education

During the past several years, there has been a renewed interest in the role that arts and dance can play in education. This may be because educators are concerned about the very survival of the arts in the public school system, especially in the face of trends to eliminate specialized arts schools and to reduce the role of the arts in education in general. On the other hand, this increase in interest may also be due to a heightened awareness that arts have a vital role to play in the cognitive, personal, and social development of all students in the 21st century. Dance educators and arts advocates have long claimed that dance has a unique value to the education of the whole child. They feel that dance is a fundamental form of human expression and a rich medium for learning. It's a way of learning and knowing, and a means of creating and expressing meaning. As such, it is a form of language. The body is the instrument of dance, and dance is soundless. Hence, it is a natural means of communication and learning for a wide range of students - the young to the old, the gifted to the severely physically and/or cognitively challenged. Because its medium is the body itself, and the body is the most basic of all human learning tools, dance is perhaps the most fundamental of the arts and should be a part of every child's education. This extends to children with physical or developmental disabilities who already think and experience the world in terms of movement but are often left behind or excluded from traditional educational processes and subject matter. Therefore, one of the most important arguments for arts and dance in education is that it's a means by which all children can find ways to learn and succeed.

4. Challenges and Limitations of Dance as Education

Lack of funding for dance in schools is a recurring problem. Dance specialists in education often face a lack of financial support or resources to develop their teaching. This frequently results in PPA time being swallowed up with work that is not directly related to teaching and learning, and as such, lessens the impact the dance professionals can have upon the learners. As well as a result of preferences towards other subjects, such as English or Numeracy, expressed within the Primary School Sector, the introduction of the Primary Physical Education and Sport Premium in March 2013 has not been helpful in creating space for the arts as a vehicle to engage and stimulate learners. An article in The Guardian newspaper by Judith Knight states the view of the arts community. "When the policy is so strictly driven by practical voting out mentality, despite the financial incentive to schools, we are at great risk of being used as a tool to facilitate the policy's implementation. This is already happening as ongoing pressure of assessment in literacy and mathematics is detracting from the arts" (www.theguardian.com). With inspection of reports made following the introduction of this financial incentive at Yavneh College and Primrose Hill schools, the extent of the problem becomes more apparent. Too often, funding for arts education is reallocated to other areas in need of improvement in an attempt to raise standards in other subjects, so the disadvantages faced by dance and its educators still continue. A case study at a London-based primary school, attached to a dance residency, highlighted that despite children having an initial enthusiasm to participate in classes, time out of the curriculum to write extensive planning formatively led to a repression of creativity, and the children expressed an apparent disenchantment in the lessons. This case highlights the larger scope of the problem and its impact on teaching and learning in dance.

4.1 Lack of funding and resources

Dance is faced with many systematic challenges in its identity as an educational medium. One of the biggest limitations that has been discussed widely is the lack of funding and resources. Throughout history, humanities subjects have always struggled to gain the same level of funding offered to core academic subjects such as English or Mathematics. While many would argue the artistic value and creativity fostered from humanities subjects is important, it is difficult to make this justification when arts education has a tendency to nurture more skill-based learning. Shield argues "...the essential problems faced by dance in higher education today stem fundamentally from the fact that dance education operates within a system which serves a culture which gives low priority to the arts – particularly the performing arts, as a veritable mode of knowledge." The implications of the lack of funding are varied including the shortage of job opportunities for teachers and the lack of prestige in higher education. The careers available for graduates of a dance teaching degree are, like the subject, undervalued compared to that of a traditional primary or high school teacher. This results in fewer job opportunities and less pay for dance teachers, making it less likely for an individual to choose a career in dance education.

4.2 Limited integration of dance in mainstream education

Dance has often been perceived as a decorative, physical activity, a form of entertainment and as a result situated on the periphery of the curriculum. Little has disrupted this stereotype in the National Curriculum of England which includes a far from exhaustive list of activities that have a physical component. This has meant that teachers have often had to justify its inclusion in the timetable. What has followed are isolated pockets of good practice and a plethora of dance activities linked to a particular theme or topic. The QCA's schemes of work for Physical Education at Key Stages 1 and 2 are good examples. Dance has failed to become a subject in its own right despite the well-documented potential to contribute to whole school, cross-curricular and specific subject learning. However, it is generally agreed that these schemes offer the best platform for dance in this country at present. This lack of cohesive provision has meant that teachers often do not have the background knowledge and/or skills to teach dance effectively. Although this applies to all subjects, it has meant that children's experiences of dance are sometimes poor and their enjoyment and achievement affected. I have witnessed teachers being pressured into teaching a dance unit when they have no real interest in the subject. On the pupils' part, wanting to experience dance as a serious discipline can be made difficult if they experience no continuity.

4.3 Perception and misconceptions about dance as a serious discipline

Perception and misconceptions of dance are prevalent in society. The notion that comprises dance as a non-serious or secondary means of education is identified as one of the greatest challenges in developing dance as a legitimate educational experience in this country. This perception is held by parents and educators from grassroots levels up to tertiary institutions. An Australian study completed by Erin Brannagan (2008) investigated the transition of students from primary to high school. In this study, it was identified that at the primary level, students engaged in dance as part of their PDHPE curriculum with much enthusiasm and enjoyment. However, upon entry to high school, an overwhelming majority of these students identified a lack of interest in continuing this course and thus dance as a school subject in the secondary setting. The study concluded that this decision was influenced by the negative perceptions of high school dance and the contrast between what this student valued as a serious subject. This perception continued to tertiary education levels as it was identified in an interview with a Texas high school guidance counselor that students who have been identified academically gifted did not consider an arts education program—after nearly ten years of the program's inception—because it was not considered a serious program of study (Sellani, 2015). This attitude enforced by both the students and their parents poses as an obstacle for the individual who wishes to pursue a career in dance education.

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The Physiological and Psychological Benefits of Dance and its Effects on Children and Adolescents: A Systematic Review

1 Faculty of Sport Science, Ningbo University, Zhejiang, China

2 Department of Government and International Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China

3 Department of Sport Physical Education and Health, Centre for Health and Exercise Science Research, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China

Alistair Cole

Julien s. baker, rashmi supriya, tomas k. tong, roger awan-scully.

José Parraça , Universidade de Évora, Portugal

Associated Data

The original contributions presented in the study are included in the article/supplementary material, further inquiries can be directed to the corresponding author.

Background: The aim of this review was to examine the physiological and psychological benefits of dance and its effects on children and adolescents. We consider the therapeutic benefits of dance and outline the potential of dance as an alternative therapy for certain pathologies and medical disorders. Secondly, we summarize the types of dances used in physical interventions, and comment on the methodologies used. Finally, we consider the use of dance as a different exercise modality that may have benefits for increased physical activity generally, and for increased physical education provision in schools.

Methods: A structured search strategy was conducted using the databases of PubMed, MEDLINE, Web of science, PsycARTICLES, and Social Science database. This review used the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines for systematic reviews. Studies that were published in the past 20 years were considered for inclusion. All written publications were searched for in English, and all articles included in this review were peer reviewed full papers.

Conclusion: The key findings from this review indicate that dance is a feasible alternative to traditional physical activity. The findings also indicate that dance provides physiological and psychological benefits to healthy and medically compromised populations. Implementation of dance programs in schools and society generally needs serious consideration by policy makers. We hope that the results of this review stimulate debate and provide the necessary evidence to profile dance as a viable alternative medium of physical activity. Comprehensive and integrated changes will be needed including economical and legislative support from politicians and associated governmental agencies. The findings reported here are important and have implications for health policy change, reconfiguration, and implementation.

1 Introduction

Physical Activity (PA) provides positive health benefits. The benefits include increases in cardiovascular fitness, physiological and psychological health, and musculoskeletal strength. In addition, PA has been successful in the prevention and treatment of diseases such as stroke, diabetic problems, high blood pressure, and certain cancers. PA has also been proven to be beneficial for maintaining a healthy body weight, enhancing quality of life, and contributing to individual well-being ( WHO, 2020 ). PA also contributes positively in influencing social connectedness ( Duberg et al., 2020 ). Equally, a decline in PA or lack of engagement, is one of the major risk factors associated with good health and mortality. Individuals not engaging in PA are prone to a 20%–30% risk of death increase compared to individuals participating in PA ( WHO, 2020 ).

It has also been reported that engagement in regular PA is essential for healthy growth and development in children ( WHO, 2020 ). The growth and developmental period in young people, is a time when negative social, and psychological experiences can affect cognitive, intellectual, and rational development ( Lund et al., 2018 ). In support of this, most preventive strategies have increased success rates when the focus of the preventive strategy occurs in the early years and decades of life ( Kieling et al., 2011 ). The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that young people aged 5–17 years should participate in on average 60 min a day of moderate-to-vigorous exercise. The exercise type should mostly include aerobic activity executed over a 7-day period. The inclusion of high intensity performances, such as strength exercises, for at least 3 days a week is also desirable. The time spent participating in sedentary activities, particularly television and computer screen time, also needs to be minimized ( WHO, 2020 ).

However, despite this, 80% of the world’s adolescent population do not participate in physical activity ( WHO, 2020 ). This figure is particularly alarming in female populations. One reason for lack of participation by females could be related to physical development. As females grow and develop, they become more aware of the significance of femininity, and involvement in exercise is often depicted as not corresponding to this image ( Slater and Tiggemann, 2010 ). This problem has become even more acute during the COVID-19 pandemic. Quarantine stratagems have had a poor impact on PA. Research has revealed significant decreases in PA during this period ( Tao et al., 2021 ). These undesirable health consequences of quarantine measures, that include psychological stress and greater physical inactivity, need consideration post quarantine to promote increased physical activity and associated health benefits ( Füzéki et al., 2020 ).

Dance movement practice (DMP) is a type of art therapy that has been entrenched in modern culture for 70 years. Dance provides benefits for participants that are both personal and independent. Dance participation also provides physical and mental wellbeing ( Tao et al., 2021 ). Further benefits include defining and consolidating body image; illuminating the ego; providing relief of physical tension, anxiety, and aggression, while decreasing cognitive and kinesthetic confusion. Dance also increases the capacity for interaction, increases pleasure, fun, and impulsiveness ( Jeong et al., 2005 ). In addition, children subjected to emotional illness have certain emotional and physical limitations when engaging in traditional PA. Dance is a physical activity medium that can provide discrete and precise exercise prescriptions for these individuals.

Research related to dance interventions has demonstrated a rising trajectory in recent years. However, dance still needs to be recognized as viable physical activity alternative. In earlier reviews on children and adolescent populations, it was demonstrated that dance therapy could promote beneficial health aspects in children with autism spectrum disorders ( Aithal et al., 2021 ). The research outlined that dance may be associated with positive physical, cognitive and sociological adaptations for children with emotional and physical problems, however, the selection of articles used in the study were of a poor quality and need to be viewed with caution ( May et al., 2021 ). There are a further three articles focusing on the association between dance, well-being and health, however, there are some imperfections in the studies. These include not fully exploring the outcomes of the dance intervention including other types of PA ( Mansfield et al., 2018 ); less coverage for age groups ( Carson et al., 2017 ). In addition, some studies only verified the amount of time spent performing at moderate to vigorous intensities in children and adolescents during the dance class. Further studies need to expand on the potential benefits and exercise intensities and durations used in these groups ( Dos Santos et al., 2021 ). To the best our knowledge, there are no existing studies that have explored fully the benefits of dance interventions for children and adolescents. Further research is required to systematically report on all aspects related to the benefits of dance as a viable physical activity for this population. Therefore, the purpose of this review was to select all the studies utilizing a dance intervention in children and adolescents over the past 20 years; examine the dance intervention method; verify the outcomes; summarize the strengths and limitations of the research; and to provide evidence that dance can be used for children and adolescents as a suitable and viable physical activity in the future.

The four main objectives of this systematic review were to examine: 1) The emotional and physical benefits of dance in children and adolescents; 2) To consider the benefits of dance as an alternative physical activity/therapy for children and adolescents with certain medical disorders; 3) To examine the types of dances selected for the interventions reviewed, and the specific training loads required. This information may be useful for future research and implementation; 4) To consider dance as an alternative PA for school physical education provision.

2 Methodology

2.1 eligibility criteria.

Studies focusing on the use of dance as an intervention and studies that involved children and adolescents inclusive of up to 18 years of age were included. Studies that were written in English and published in the past 20 years were considered. Meta-analyses or systematic review/review articles and pilot studies were excluded. Studies that used professional/semi-professional dancers as participants were also excluded. For inclusion in this review, each selected article must have been subjected to a peer review process prior to publication. In addition, the article had to present a clear, consistent methodology.

2.2 Information Sources and Search Strategy

A literature search was completed on 25 November 2021, articles were found by examining electronic databases to locate research studies that focused on the use of dance as an intervention for children and adolescents. The search methodology used in this study was based on the PICOS system ( Jensen, 2017 ) and followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines ( Moher et al., 2009 ). PROSPERO Registration Number is CRD42022326748. To locate articles for inclusion in this review the databases of PubMed, MEDLINE, Web of science, PsycARTICLES, and Social Science databases were comprehensively searched. Publications were identified for inclusion using the MeSH terms Children OR Teenager OR Adolescent OR Schoolchildren OR Student AND Dance OR Dancing OR Ballroom-dance OR Sport-dance OR Ballet OR Jazz OR Folk-dance OR Hip-Pop OR Square-dance OR Dance-movement-therapy OR Dance-effectiveness OR Dance-interventions. Additionally, other review or systematic review articles were used as guidelines to source articles that matched the inclusion criteria ( Sheppard and Broughton, 2020 ).

2.3 Study Selection and Data Collection Process

Articles used in this review were selected by identification of the search terms contained in the full texts. Articles not meeting the inclusion criteria or meeting the exclusion criteria were discarded. Figure 1 represents a flowchart of the process of identification and selection of relevant studies. The study selection process was confirmed by two authors (DT and JSB). If there was a disagreement between the two authors in the selection process, a third author (RS) contributed to resolving any article selection or exclusion issues.

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Flowchart: Article selection process.

Data extraction sheets were then developed. The first author (DT) extracted the data from included studies and the second author (JSB) checked the extracted articles. Any disagreements between authors was resolved by amicable discussion; if no consensus was accomplished, a third author (RS) decided the outcome. The following information for each study was extracted: 1) The citation information; 2) Participants demographics; 3) Dance intervention; 4) Study design/Measurements/Type of data; 5) Key findings.

2.4 Risk of Bias for Individual Studies

Risk of bias variables included random sequence generation, allocation concealment, blinding of patients and personnel, blinding of outcome assessment, incomplete outcome data, selective outcome reporting and other bias was examined following the Cochrane collaboration Risk of Bias Tool ( Higgins and Altman, 2017 ; Higgins et al., 2011 ). 15 RCT studies were divided into three categories, low risk, high risk, or unclear risk (when a study reported inadequate information to rate a specific domain). Risk of bias was also assessed separately using Review Manager 5.4.1 software. This assessment was completed by DT and RS independently; any disagreements on the risk of bias were adjudicated by JSB.

3.1 Study Selection and Characteristics

In total, 179 articles, after excluding duplicates, were identified by the literature search process. Following the inclusion and exclusion criteria, 162 were discarded resulting in 17 remaining articles (see Figure 1 ). Included articles were summarized into tables (see Table 1 and Table 2 for further details). Ten (59%) of the 17 studies recruited females as participants ( Jeong et al., 2005 ; Robinson et al., 2010 ; O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Wagener et al., 2012 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ; Staiano et al., 2017a ; Duberg et al., 2020 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ; Högström et al., 2022 ), the remaining seven articles were studies inclusive of both genders ( Morris et al., 2013 ; Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ; Bollimbala et al., 2019 ; Oppici et al., 2020 ; Goswami et al., 2021 ; Raghupathy et al., 2021 ; Rudd et al., 2021 ). There were 15 (88%) studies that used randomized controlled trials (RCT) ( Jeong et al., 2005 ; Robinson et al., 2010 ; Wagener et al., 2012 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ; Staiano et al., 2017a ; Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ; Bollimbala et al., 2019 ; Duberg et al., 2020 ; Oppici et al., 2020 ; Goswami et al., 2021 ; Raghupathy et al., 2021 ; Rudd et al., 2021 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ; Högström et al., 2022 ), and 8 (47%) studies used both quantitative and qualitative mixed methods to collect data ( Jeong et al., 2005 ; Robinson et al., 2010 ; O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Wagener et al., 2012 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Morris et al., 2013 ; Staiano et al., 2017a ; Goswami et al., 2021 ). Included studies examined objective indicators and self-reported measurements with physiological (41%) ( O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Morris et al., 2013 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ; Staiano et al., 2017a ; Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ; Högström et al., 2022 ). psychological (47%) ( Jeong et al., 2005 ; Robinson et al., 2010 ; Wagener et al., 2012 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Bollimbala et al., 2019 ; Duberg et al., 2020 ; Oppici et al., 2020 ; Rudd et al., 2021 ) and medical (12%) ( Goswami et al., 2021 ; Raghupathy et al., 2021 ) included as the three main aspects of this study. The results and key concepts of the review are discussed below.

Summary of participant age groups, research design, methodological approach and outcome examined.

Dance intervention typeResearch designMethodological approachOutcome examined
Gender groupChoreographedOther typeRCTNon-RCTCross-sectionalQuantitativeQualitativeMixPhysiologicalPsychologicalMedicalTotal studies for gender group
Both Gender4361522327

Other type in the dance intervention part = Exergaming, African dance, Jazz dance, street, Contemporary dance, Traditional India dance, Folk dance, India classical dance, Hip-pop, Step dance, Educational dance, Dance-based PE, Dance and Yoga.

Detailed summary of the study details.

CitationsParticipant demographicsDance interventionsStudy design/Measurements/Type of dataKey findings
= 40 Female Age 12–18 years oldExergaming (video game dance)RCTPositive impact of dance-based exergaming on obese adolescents’ psychological functioning and perceived competence to continue exercise
Obese adolescents1. BMI 2. Perceived Competence Scale (PCS) 2. The Behavior Assessment System for Children-2 (BASC-2) 3. Parent Rating Scales-Adolescent version (PRS-A) 4. Adolescent Self-Report Scales (SRP-A)
United StatesQuantitative and Qualitative
= 112 FemaleAfrican dance, different choreographies to popular music in the show/jazz dance, street and contemporary dance genreRCT1. Dance intervention can be effective in decreasing daytime tiredness
Age 13–18 years old < Participants with stress-related mental health problemsPittsburgh Sleep Quality Index2. Nonpharmacological interventions to decrease stress-related problems among adolescents
= 55 Both genderSpecially choreographed dance routineRCT1. Dance intervention improved inhibitory control and potentially working memory capacity
Age 6–7 years old1. Executive functions (working memory capacity, cognitive flexibility and inhibitory control)2. Dance intervention did not improve motor competence beyond typical development
Primary school student2. Motor competence
= 36 Both genderTraditional India danceRCT1. The traditional Indian dance improved the locomotor skills of children with Down syndrome than that of neuromuscular exercises
Age 6–10 years old1. Test of Gross Motor Development–2 (TGMD–2) 2. Four Square Step Test (FSST) 3. Pediatric balance scale2. Both the dance and neuromuscular training equally impacted the balance capacity
Children with DSQuantitative
= 378 Both genderSpecially choreographed dance routineA non-RCT1. Significant increases in physical activity, endurance fitness and a reduction in the rate of increase in sum of skinfolds
Age 9.75 ± 0.82 years old1. Physical activity 2. Food intake 3. Anthropometric measure 4. Knowledge of healthy lifestyles 5. Psychological measures2. There was no intervention effect on any of the dietary variables, knowledge, and the majority of psychological variables
Primary school studentQuantitative and Qualitative
United Kingdom
= 40 FemaleSpecially choreographed dance routineRCTDance movement therapy improved the negative psychological symptoms and modulated serotonin and dopamine concentrations in adolescent girls with mild depression
Age 16 years oldMiddle school student with depression1. Measurement of Psychological Distress (SCL-90-R) 2. Measurements of Neurohormones
KoreaQuantitative and Qualitative
= 34 Both genderFolk danceRCT 1. Convergent thinking 2. Divergent thinking1. Dance intervention improved convergent thinking 2. Participants with normal BMI improved in two divergent thinking components 3. Not permit us to establish a causal relationship between PA and the development of creative potential
Age 12 years oldSpecially choreographed dance routineQuantitative
Primary school students
= 41 FemaleExergaming (video game dance)RCTExergaming reduced body fat and increased BMD
Age 14–18 years old1. Physical examination and electrocardiogram 2. Anthropometry 3. Blood pressure 4. Body composition
Overweight and obese girlsQuantitative
= 261 FemaleHip-hopRCT1.Not significantly reduce BMI gain compared with health education 2. Potentially reductions in lipid levels, hyperinsulinemia, and depressive symptoms
Age 8–10 years oldAfrican dance1. Body mass index (BMI) 2. Waist circumference, Triceps skinfold thickness, resting blood pressure and heart rate 3, Fasting serum insulin, glucose, lipid levels 4. Physical activity level 5. Television viewing, videotape viewing, video game and computer use 6. self-reported psychosocial measures Quantitative and Qualitative
African American or black girlsStep dance
= 59 FemaleAfrican danceRCT1. Improve self-rated health for adolescent girls with internalizing problems 2. The improvement remained a year after the intervention
Age 13–18 years oldJazz1. Self-rated health 2. Adherence to and experience of the intervention
Participants with stress and psychosomatic symptomsContemporary danceQuantitative and Qualitative
= 112 FemaleAfrican danceRCT1. Dance interventions may reduce somatic symptoms and emotional distress in adolescent girls 2. May constitute a nonpharmacological complement to school health services
Age 13–18 years oldJazzQuestionnaires with somatic symptoms and emotional distress
Participants with stress-related somatic symptoms and emotional distressStreet danceQualitative
= 85 Both genderEducational danceRCTEducational dance helped the children’s motor development
Elementary school studentMotor developments
= 37 FemaleExergaming (video game dance)RCTPositive impacts on adolescent girls’ self-reported PA, television viewing, self-efficacy, and intrinsic motivation
Age 14–18 years old1. Anthropometric measurements 2. Physical activity level 3. Behavioral observation 4. Self-report survey
Participants with overweight or obeseQuantitative and Qualitative
United States
= 149 Female Age 11–18 years oldBalletCross-sectional designDance classes can make an important contribution to girls’ total physical activity
Dance studios girlsJazz1. Anthropometric measurements 2. Physical activity level 3. Self- report surveyQuantitative and Qualitative
United StatesTap dance
= 80 Both genderJazz-dance choreographyRCT 1. Working memory capacity 2. Motor competence 3. Cognitive flexibility and inhibitory control1. Dance practice coupled with a high cognitive challenge could improve working memory capacity and motor competence in children 2. The difference between groups was not statistically significant
Age 8.8 ± 0.7 years oldQuantitative
Primary school children
= 112 FemaleDance and YogaRCTSignificantly greater pain reduction
Aged 9–13 years oldSelf-report 1. Maximum abdominal pain 2. bases and related information
Diagnosed with FAP or IBS with persistent painQualitative
= 59 Both genderSpecially choreographed dance routineRCTHome-centered activity-based therapy is a feasible and practical modality of CP rehabilitation
Age 5–12 years old1.6-minute-walk-test 2.10-minute-fast-walk-test 3. Ashworth scale (MAS) 4. Tardieu scale (MTS) 5. Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS) 6. Gross Motor Function Measure-88 (GMFM-88) 7. Cerebral Palsy Quality of Life (CP-QoL)
Participants with spastic diplegic CPQuantitative and Qualitative

3.2 Risk of Bias Within Individual Studies

A summary of the risk of bias assessment is shown in Figure 2 . Each study is outlined in Figure 3 . According to the assessment criteria no studies were rated as being of low risk of bias. The primary reason for a high risk of bias was the lack of participant and personnel blinding (60%) across the majority of studies; other reasons were incomplete outcome data (20%) and other bias (20%) (the authors explained in the risk factors that may influence the results of the study) separately. Selective reporting (80%) and random sequence generation (67%) items in most studies were rated as low risk of bias, and most studies rated as being unclear risk of bias due to lack of clear reporting in allocation concealment (87%), other bias included (67%) and blinding of outcome assessment (53%) items.

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The summary of risk of bias.

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Risk of bias for each study.

3.3 Dance Selection

There is no consensus regarding the dance intervention type or intervention duration period in the existing literature. The ideal intervention would include different dance types for matching different participants (gender, religion, etc.). During the intervention, teaching supportively and non-judgmentally were important. A further important factor for consideration during dance implementation studies was cultural diversity. Certain traditional or special dances for certain areas and populations may demonstrate greater participation and better intervention performances and results. For further information see Table 2 .

In relation to the articles selected for this review, they mainly included African dance ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Duberg et al., 2020 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ), Jazz ( O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Duberg et al., 2013 ; Duberg et al., 2020 ; Oppici et al., 2020 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ), Contemporary dance ( Duberg et al., 2013 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ), Exergaming video dance ( Wagener et al., 2012 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ; Staiano et al., 2017a ), Ballet ( O’Neill et al., 2011 ), Jazz dance, Tap dance ( O’Neill et al., 2011 ), Street dance ( Duberg et al., 2020 ; Sandberg et al., 2021 ), Hip-pop ( Robinson et al., 2010 ), Step dance ( Robinson et al., 2010 ), Fork dance ( Bollimbala et al., 2019 ), Traditional Indian dance ( Raghupathy et al., 2021 ), Education dance ( Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ), Dance combined with Yoga ( Högström et al., 2022 ), and specially choreographed dance routine ( Jeong et al., 2005 ; Morris et al., 2013 ; Bollimbala et al., 2019 ; Goswami et al., 2021 ; Rudd et al., 2021 ).

For ethical reasons, control groups should be offered dance interventions following completion of the studies. Researchers should ensure professional choreography of dance interventions and make the routines both physically intense and enjoyable. Researchers should also consider the acceptability of dance for males in the process of wide-ranging dance promotion.

3.4 Intervention Monitoring

It is very important in dance study design to monitor intervention training loads. During dance interventions, setting a related exercise target Heart Rate (HR) to ensure that participants reach a predetermined level of exercise is essential. Depending on physical fitness levels, population groups, and ability, variations in intensity of exercise including high-intensity exercise or moderate to vigorous exercise may be used. The intervention duration should be longer than the time required for habit-forming at least to allow participants to continue dancing following the intervention. This important methodological issue has been neglected in previous studies. Only certain articles mentioned intervention monitoring, such as the use of Heart Rate ( Wagener et al., 2012 ), and the Borg Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) ( Borg 1998 ). However, scientific and professional monitoring of training intensities is lacking; experimental design and interventions are needed that are based on strong scientific evidence or follow the WHO guidelines ( WHO, 2020 ).

3.5 Outcome Measure Summary

Outcome measures outlined in this review include objective measurement methods and self-rated measures of activity. We suggest that a combination of these two measurement methodologies will provide a more complete understanding of the participants’ responses to the intervention results based on desired outcome measures (See Table 2 ).

Of the articles selected for this review, articles included objective measurements, such as anthropometric measurements ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Staiano et al., 2017a ; Staiano et al., 2017b ), physical activity levels ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Morris et al., 2013 ), heart rate (HR) ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; Robinson et al., 2010 ; O’Neill et al., 2011 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ), body mass index (BMI) ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; Morris et al., 2013 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ), blood pressure (BP) ( Högström et al., 2022 ), blood samples for total cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, insulin and high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LOD)-cholesterol, body composition ( Robinson et al., 2010 ; Staiano et al., 2017b ), Four-Square Step Test (FSST) ( Raghupathy et al., 2021 ), Test of Gross Motor Development-2 (TGMD-2) ( Raghupathy et al., 2021 ), plasma serotonin and dopamine concentrations ( Jeong et al., 2005 ), 6-minute-walk-test, 10-minute-fast-walk-test ( Goswami et al., 2021 ), executive functions ( Oppici et al., 2020 ; Rudd et al., 2021 ), motor development ( Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ; Goswami et al., 2021 ; Raghupathy et al., 2021 ).

Questionnaire measurements, included the Perceived Competence Scale (PCS) ( Wagener et al., 2012 ), Adolescent Self-Report Scales (SRP-A) ( Wagener et al., 2012 ), Measure of Psychological Distress (SCL-90-R) ( Jeong et al., 2005 ), Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index ( Sandberg et al., 2021 ), the scale for Self-efficacy for Physical Activity, the scale for Self-efficacy for Healthy Eating ( Morris et al., 2013 ), Symptom Check List-90-Revison (SCL-90-R), Child Behavior Checklist ( Oppici et al., 2020 ), McKnight Risk Factor Survey; Female African American Pre-adolescent Body Figure Silhouettes; 10-item short form of the Children’s Depression Inventory; 10-item Rosenberg Self-Esteem scale ( Robinson et al., 2010 ), Godin-Shephard Leisure Time PA, Intrinsic Motivation Inventory to assess their enjoyment and experience of playing exergames ( Staiano et al., 2017a ).

Outcome measures also included measures derived from the authors, such as participants-reported competency regarding maintaining regular exercise, internalizing and externalizing symptomatology, social stress, relationship with parents, interpersonal relationships, social skill and pro-social behaviors ( Wagener et al., 2012 ), knowledge of healthy lifestyles test ( Morris et al., 2013 ), questions regarding lifestyle, self-rated health, emotional distress, psychosomatic symptoms, feelings, depression, sleep, school, interests, friends, leisure time, and how the subjects enjoyed dance ( Duberg et al., 2013 ), maximum abdominal pain ( Högström et al., 2022 ), somatic symptoms and emotional distress ( Duberg et al., 2020 ), executive functions, working memory capacity, cognitive flexibility, inhibitory control, and motor competence ( Rudd et al., 2021 ).

4 Discussion

4.1 physiological benefits of dance, 4.1.1 dance intervention contributed to access to physical activity.

An acceptable exercise should be enjoyable, fun, safe and make the participants feel elated. The high participation rate and ease of acceptance and performance made dance interventions a sustainable and flexible alternative mediator to increase physical activity. Dance intervention programs can be performed in safe community spaces, free of charge. This provides a good opportunity for the parents to have more communication and social interaction with their children while facilitating intergenerational togetherness. These are good social outcomes for parental involvement with children in addition to providing a good family exercise environment ( Morris et al., 2013 ). Previously, a dance study enrolled 149 girls (11–18 years-old) into dance intervention group. Activity was performed using structured dance classes in a dance studio. Dancing occupied 29 percent of the individual’s moderate-to vigorous-physical activity (MVPA) (within 1 week). During intervention days the female participants were 70% more MVPA than non-program time ( O’Neill et al., 2011 ).

4.1.2 Physical Fitness Improvement

Young people aged between 15 and 24 years encounter greater daytime fatigue than other age groups; this problem seems to be more severe among girls. Daytime tiredness increases in adolescents with health problems, these include sleep disturbances, and mental health issues. These associated psychological issues, somatic problems, and negative attitudes towards life decrease school achievement and satisfaction ( Sandberg et al., 2021 ). An article investigating 8 months dance intervention, using a total of 48 classes over 24 weeks (except holidays), found that daytime fatigue significantly decreased in a dance intervention cohort at 8 months ( p = 0.024). Follow up measures observed that there were still decreases at 12- and 20-months post intervention separately. The quality of sleep indicators also improved during the dance intervention. These included, falling asleep ( p = 0.0037), less worried sleep ( p = 0.041), and waking up during the night ( p = 0.023). Daytime fatigue decreased without changes in sleep time, which suggests improvements in both sleep quality and well-being. The findings also indicate the facilitation of the creation of a healthy positive sleep cycle ( Sandberg et al., 2021 ).

4.1.3 Dance in Combination With Traditional Physical Activity

A previous investigation examined combining a dance intervention with running activity using primary school students. The physical activity level, skinfolds reduction and endurance fitness showed the significant increases ( p < 0.05) compared with a control group. For the secondary measurements, there were no change in dietary variables, knowledge, and majority of psychological indicators. However, the participants, teachers, and parents all responded positively. From the pupil’s perspective, most pupils enjoyed practicing dance and had a positive experience from joining the dance competitions. The parents all expressed that their children had a pleasant feeling from participating from the program, and because of their involvement, had become more aware of their own physical activity lifestyles ( Morris et al., 2013 ). Dance also seems to have a positive effect on certain neuromuscular and neurovascular conditions.

Globally, 13.5% of school-aged children are affected by functional abdominal pain disorders (FAPDs). FAPDs include irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), functional dyspepsia, abdominal migraine, and functional abdominal pain (FAP). Abdominal pain is accompanied by other symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, reduced life quality, and school absenteeism ( Högström et al., 2022 ). Previously, a research article demonstrated that Yoga had beneficial effects in reducing pain intensity, absenteeism, and IBS-related symptoms. Dance is a relaxed rhythmical activity, and when combined with yoga, seems to provide physical and mental benefits that reduce pain. In addition, dance is an extremely popular activity for young females. This research examined the benefits of dance and yoga on FAP using a female population. The 121 participants in the study were 9–13 years old girls who were diagnosed with FAP or IBS with persistent pain. The dance and yoga interventions were performed on two occasions per week lasting 8 months conducted during after-school courses. The key findings indicated that dance in association with yoga works better for this population than standard conventional health care methods for reducing maximum pain aspects. We can further hypothesize that these activities in combination might have been the strength of this intervention, as dance contributes to cardiorespiratory and rhythmic aspects of movement while yoga helps with focus, relaxation, and introspection ( Högström et al., 2022 ). The socialization potential of the intervention may also have had positive impacts. Opportunities to engage with new friends and to observe other girls suffering from similar symptoms may have also helped facilitate the positive responses observed.

4.1.4 Dance in Games

Over 60% of adolescents spend 73 min/day on video games ( Staiano et al., 2017b ). High levels of traditional and digital media use are linked to obesity, cardiovascular disease, and mental problems over the life course. These risks and associations have been observed to start in early childhood. Prolonged media use during preschool years is associated with increases in Body Mass Index (BMI). Body weight gain may be difficult to regress in combination with other risk factors, which increases the risk for greater weight gain and illness later in adult life ( Robinson et al., 2010 ). This statement agrees with an international study that included almost three hundred thousand children and adolescents; the researchers found that watching TV 1–3 h per day led to a 10%–27% increase in obesity ( Braithwaite et al., 2013 ).

As a result of the upsurge in computer use, some research studies have combined games and dance to cater for the characteristics of children and adolescents associated with media use and to minimize the effects of sedentary screen time. Dance-related computer games can increase the enjoyment and motivation of participation by allowing children and adolescents to take the initiative in selecting the variables of interest during the game. For example, participants can select the intensity levels, dance routines/mode, dance music, even dance game partners. In a research study investigating 36 h of dance exergaming lasting 12 weeks, researchers observed a decrease in adiposity and an increase in bone mineral density compared to a non-exercising control group ( Staiano et al., 2017b ). Furthermore, active video games (exergaming) facilitate exercise in a comfortable home environment, helps with exercise adherence and facilitates positive long-term changes in behavior. Recent studies have found exergaming to be far greater in enhancing energy expenditure when compared with non-active video games. The energy expenditure values obtained suggest that the intensities are comparable with moderate-intensity aerobic exercise ( Wagener et al., 2012 ).

Active video game (exergaming) participation requires entire body movements. This results in light to moderate increases in energy expenditure and elevated heart rates. This could contribute to weight reduction and health benefits ( Staiano et al., 2017a ). In group settings, active video gaming may have benefits for increasing self-efficacy related to PA. There may also be beneficial effects for intrinsic motivation. Social cognitive theory suggests that behavioral change results from links among behaviors, the environment, and psychosocial variables ( Staiano et al., 2017a ). Group cohesion resulting from digital game play may be appealing to obese young people. These individuals are less likely to engage in traditional sports owing to excess weight, criticism, and bullying. Group active video play may provide a method of improving poor psychosocial health experienced by overweight and obese young people and facilitate increases in total PA levels ( Staiano et al., 2017a ). Future research is needed to investigate exergames and the design of dance games as enjoyable, sociable, motivating, and effective physical activity devices.

4.1.5 Motor Development

Motor development defines physical growth and the strengthening of a child’s bones and muscles. It also defines an ability to move and touch his/her surroundings. For instance, if a child is good at gross motor skills such as crawling or walking, this affects cognitive development because he/she can easily move and explore their physical environment. In recent times, most children do not participate in PA outdoors; their favorite games no longer require large movements, and instead of using sports halls and open spaces, games are mostly played on cell phones, computers, or tablets ( Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ).

A randomized control study investigated a group who attended two classes of dance per week, over a 7-month period. The intervention was a specialized modified educational dance program. Using creative and ludic proposals, the intervention challenged the subjects to discover and experiment with new movement patterns and discover new ways of implementing the movements they already knew. The results of the study demonstrated significant improvements in motor development capabilities of the students exposed to educational dance lessons, compared with a control group. Both groups obtained positive results; however, the dance intervention group improved more. The improvements observed for motor skill development were maintained following cessation of the program. The author of the experiment stated that the practice of educational dance should be longitudinal as motor development is permanently evolving ( Anjos and Ferraro, 2018 ).

4.2 Psychological Benefits of Dance

4.2.1 alleviation of depressive symptoms.

A recent experiment focused on African-American girls aged 8–10 years old and their parents or guardians who were involved in a dance intervention lasting 2 years. Fasting total cholesterol levels, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and depressive symptoms decreased significantly among girls in the dance treatment group. There were no significant differences between groups for BMI ( Robinson et al., 2010 ). A further study examined 12 weeks of dance movement therapy in adolescents with mild depression. The results suggested that dance movement therapy demonstrated positive improvements in the symptoms such as somatization, obsessive-compulsive disorder, interpersonal sensitivity, depression, anxiety, hostility, paranoid ideation, and psychoticism. All these variables are related to negative metal health problems ( Jeong et al., 2005 ). Fatigue, stress, insomnia, and psychological symptoms are directly or indirectly linked to circulating levels of serotonin and dopamine. The increased plasma serotonin concentrations and decreased dopamine concentrations indicate possible therapeutic benefits for the decreases in depression observed in the dance movement therapy group ( Jeong et al., 2005 ).

4.2.2 Perceived Competence

Obese adolescents have sedentary existences and report feelings of embarrassment, fear of victimization and poor self-confidence about their ability to engage in exercise in group situations as powerful reasons for non-participation in physical activity ( Wagener et al., 2012 ). In relation to this, a recent study considered a dance exergaming program in obese adolescents. The findings from the study indicated that the intervention group increased their perceived competence to participate in exercise from the start to the end of an exercise period compared with a control group ( Wagener et al., 2012 ). Further benefits were that participants reported that there was an improvement in relationships with their parents. There was also a meaningful change in a high percentage of participants in the exergaming intervention that experienced improved internalizing and externalizing symptoms from baseline to the end of treatment compared to the control group. In addition, there was a very high adherence rate (98%) suggesting that group dance exergaming had a positive impact on improving obese adolescents’ self-efficacy to continue exercising and to cope with any perceived barriers to exercise ( Wagener et al., 2012 ).

4.2.3 Executive Function

Executive function plays a crucial role during childhood development. The developments include working memory capacity, inhibitory control, and cognitive flexibility ( Rudd et al., 2021 ). Executive function is a particular area of interest during the developmental stages of early childhood and has been observed to be a superior indicator of academic achievement than IQ or socio-economic status ( Oppici et al., 2020 ). Children with limited executive function are prone to a broad range of poor health and wellbeing outcomes in adulthood. Working memory is essential for understanding and making sense of new experiences as children develop over time. Low working memory capacity has been linked with poorer performance academically. As a result, designing suitable physical activity interventions that can improve working memory capacity in children are desirable and advantageous for children’s development. The improvements in executive function will eventually lead to a more intellectual and capable society ( Oppici et al., 2020 ).

Dance is often accompanied by music to create a constant sense of pleasure and motor stimulation, that is, synchronized with performance. This also provides participants with many opportunities for whole-body movement. To investigate this, an RCT that included an 8-weeks intervention was administered to 6–7-year-old children to assess the efficacy of four executive function measures. The measures were working memory capacity, cognitive flexibility, inhibitory control, and motor competence. The interventions included two dance syllabuses. The results showed that both dance syllabuses improved inhibitory control ability. The choreographed syllabus also developed working memory capacity; unfortunately, the improvement of motor competence did not exceed normal development ( Rudd et al., 2021 ).

A further study explored the effects of working memory capacity and motor competence in primary school children using different teaching pedagogies and different cognitive challenges; the experimental results showed no statistically significant differences between groups. However, the dance teachers added a cognitive challenge by limited visual presentations and encouraged children to use memories and recall movement sequences in the high-cognitive group. The results of the study demonstrated the possibility and suitability of using dance practice in combination with high cognitive challenges to improve working memory and motor competence in children. It also contributed to social skills development and the integration and enhancement of emotional elements resulting from performing in groups ( Oppici et al., 2020 ). In addition to the benefits of dance enhancing executive function, dance has been shown to be advantageous in the development of convergent thinking. Convergent thinking is associated with the process of solving problems and finding a solution to a problem ( Bollimbala et al., 2019 ). Recent studies have shown that a 20-min dance protocol as part of a regular 30-min physical education session contributed to an improvement in convergent thinking (irrespective of their BMI status). An RCT study did not establish a correlation between dance class and the development of creative potential. However, in terms of divergent thinking components (fluency and flexibility), participants with normal BMI showed improvements following a dance class intervention. The dance class group also demonstrated an increase in convergent thinking compared to the control group ( Bollimbala et al., 2019 ).

4.2.4 Internalizing Problems

Internalizing problems include depressed mood, low self-worth, and psychosomatic symptoms. Adolescent psychological health problems may have long-term negative effects on personal development; such as poor academic performance, social dysfunction, substance abuse, and suicide, especially in girls. Mental health problems have been cited to be some of the most alarming health issues and are estimated to affect 13% of children and adolescents globally. Female adolescents demonstrate a greater prevalence of health problems than their male counterparts. Females also experience greater levels of stress and somatic symptoms, and are more likely to experience pain and depression ( Duberg et al., 2020 ). Results of an RCT demonstrated that a dance intervention significantly reduced somatic symptoms and emotional distress in adolescent girls after 8 months compared with traditional school health services ( Duberg et al., 2020 ).

Another important study comprising adolescent girls aged 13–18 years old with internalizing problems who reported symptoms including pains in the head, stomach, neck, back, and/or shoulder, persistent feelings of tiredness, being worried, and being in low spirits, was completed using dance as the intervention. The intervention lasted 8 months, and self-rated health was measured using a single-item questionnaire which included general health, well-being, perceptions of symptoms, and vulnerability. The questionnaire has also been demonstrated to be both valid and reliable ( Duberg et al., 2013 ). The dance intervention group improved their self-rated health far greater than the control group. The effects of the intervention remained for several months post intervention cessation. In addition, the results also demonstrated high adherence to the intervention and a positive experience for participants. This suggests that an intervention using dance is suitable for adolescent girls with internalizing problems ( Duberg et al., 2013 ). The females participating in the study found the dance intervention to be enjoyable and undemanding, without any of the usual school pressures. The girls included had opportunities to provide input into the dance classes regarding the choice of music, and the girls participated in the creation of the choreography used. This may have created a sense of ownership for the participants, and the social developmental aspects are also important. The opportunity to make new friends and spend time participating in something they enjoy with others who have similar interests might be a powerful issue affecting recruitment, retention, and interest to participate ( Duberg et al., 2013 ).

4.3 Medical Benefits of Dance

Down Syndrome (DS) is a congenital, genetic disorder caused by the presence of an extra partial or complete copy of chromosome 21. The neuromotor, musculoskeletal and cardiopulmonary systems are functionally problematic in children with DS and this impacts on their quality of life. Approximately fifty-eight percent of children with DS fail to meet the recommended 60 min of PA per day.

Traditional neuromuscular training lacks fun, creativity, and movement exploration. As an aesthetic movement art form, dance also has a positive psychotherapeutic impact, which may improve the intelligence and dual tasking of children with DS. In addition, children express their creativity and emotions such as joy, fun and happiness in the process of practicing and participating in dance, which provides children with body awareness, enthusiasm, and confidence. Ballet and Laban’s dance have been demonstrated to improve balance, rhythm, and autonomous control in children who were DS patients. A previous study used traditional Indian dance as an intervention investigating outcomes in 36 children with DS. Traditional Indian dance appeared to be beneficial for improving locomotor skills and balance capacity in children with DS. The intervention was more effective when compared with traditional neuromuscular training. There were no adverse movement effects or discomfort recorded during and following the dance sessions. These findings outline the safety and feasibility of Indian dance regimes for this group ( Raghupathy et al., 2021 ).

In addition to the studies mentioned above, a further RCT investigating dance performance outcomes included children between the ages of 5 and 12 years, clinically diagnosed with spastic diplegic cerebral palsy (CP). The participants had Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS) Scores of II/III. In this study, dance exercise was one of eight activities that all children were expected to perform. The study evaluated the efficacy, feasibility, and safety of home-based activity rehabilitation programs for children with diplegic CP. The results of the study and methodology used suggested that dance exercise was a good choice to be added to this activity package for diplegic CP sufferers ( Cygan et al., 2020 ; Goswami et al., 2021 ).

4.4 Strengths and Limitations

To the best of our knowledge, this is the first systematic review investigating children and adolescent development using dance as an intervention. For inclusion in this review, each selected article was subjected to a peer review process prior to publication. In addition, each article had to present a clear, consistent methodology which added to research integrity.

Limitations of this review include that some of the articles only used females as participants. Therefore, generalizations about the study findings to male populations are difficult. Future studies should focus on the adaptations of dance interventions using both genders as participants. This will provide compelling evidence about the benefits of dance while minimizing the effects of gender specificity. A further limitation was that some of the studies outlined in this review used self-reported measurement tools. This may have introduced an element of recall bias. There was also a limited number of articles that were deemed suitable for inclusion based on the selection criteria.

5 Implications of Dance Exercise

Schools in many countries have traditionally hosted some form of health education program to develop knowledge, skills, and behaviors related to health awareness. Schools are in a unique position to provide healthy and academic outcomes via the implementation of health and wellness policies. Most children spend more time in school than any other location except for the home. Schools are crucial and practical for managing and providing information about childhood health risks. Because of the relationships between health status and the ability to learn, schools are in an exclusive location to influence healthy lifestyles for students by health policy implementation. Schools need to seriously consider this advantageous position to produce a solid healthy foundation in the growth stage of children that will have an important and positive impact on individuals, families, and society.

Dance and in particular creative dance, enriches the performance, composition, and appreciation of human movement, with a particular focus on producing aesthetic value. Dance performed in groups provides a social type of physical activity. Dance is also beneficial for increasing self-trust, self-esteem, and self-expression in children and adolescents ( Duberg et al., 2020 ).

Students who engage in dance at school show greater initial socialization skills and better academic achievement compared with individuals who do not participate in dance. Dance internalizes the systems involved in art forms, and both children and adolescents can use the experience gained as tools for thinking, behaving, and regulating the inner world of their minds. Certain schools in Mainland China, provide dance programs as part of after-curriculum activities that are available on a weekly basis.

The findings reported here can be of value to practitioners, policymakers, and educational staff. Because of teaching experience and having witnessed the positive effects of providing students with a broad selection of physical activities, many teachers and practitioners support dance-based physical education (PE). Despite this, dance-based schemes remain vulnerable to exclusion from the PE curriculum. This is more likely in schools where PE is viewed as a developmental tool for the preparation for participation in competitive sport. Certain schools also view PE lessons as a medium to enhance and refine elite athletic performers. Further research is needed to examine if participation in dance enhances athletic performance, increases competitiveness, and is complementary to athletic development. The findings of this review could be interpreted as providing further evidence for the value of retaining and developing dance-based PE in the school curriculum. The findings also support the importance of dance in physical education provision more generally.

A consensus survey of PE teachers should be conducted to understand the views and feasibility of PE teachers regarding including dance as a part of PE curriculum and the implementation of dance for the existing curriculum and syllabus. There are also essential factors such as teacher training and curriculum development that need consideration. In the long term, overall improvements in health and physical fitness parameters result in improvements in the quality of life for individuals. Health policy amendments are needed to provide further support for the place of dance within the physical education curriculum.

6 Conclusion

In conclusion, dance develops relationships, connects people, and increases feelings of joy and togetherness. Dance has virtually no venue restrictions. It can be practiced at home, in isolation, in groups, or anywhere with suitable spaces. Dance requires no special equipment, and this characteristic is suitable for low-income families and financially limited regions and countries. In summary, dance can be used as an appropriate and alternative physical activity mode for children and adolescents. The implementation of dance programs needs serious consideration by policy makers, schools, guardians and parents to produce greater long-term increases in physical activity in the foreseeable future. We hope that this systematic review will stimulate debate and provide more evidence for governments, schools, parents, and associated community officials to attach importance to dance as a medium of physical activity. Comprehensive and integrated changes are needed in relation to school/family/government/community partnerships. These changes include political and financial support from policy makers, and increased dance evaluation research that are important for a physical activity health policy reconfiguration and subsequent implementation.

Data Availability Statement

Author contributions.

The manuscript underwent several revisions with substantial contributions provided by each co-author. DT and JSB designed the study and the data synthesis strategy. DT conducted the systematic review, extracted and summarized the data and created the figures and tables. DT and JSB wrote the present manuscript, while AC, RA-S, RS, YGU, TKT, QH, and YG contributed the writing and critically revised the paper. All authors provided critical feedback, and read and approved the final manuscript.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.

Publisher’s Note

All claims expressed in this article are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of their affiliated organizations, or those of the publisher, the editors and the reviewers. Any product that may be evaluated in this article, or claim that may be made by its manufacturer, is not guaranteed or endorsed by the publisher.

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Benefits of Dancing Essay

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If you’re exploring the importance of dancing, this essay can help you.

Dance is an art that refers to the movement of part of the body, some of the parts or the whole body, while keeping rhythmical to music (Luetzner). It is also referred to as a nonverbal form of communication as such movements can carry some massage. So that you see the benefits of dancing, this essay explores its importance in the human experience.

Dance as an art itself can be used to make expressions. The expressions can be either of joy, sorrow, warning or sometimes used for entertainment (Luetzner). In many parts of the world, dance can also be used to express talent or extra ordinary ability over others has in dance competitions.

Sense of unity

Dancing can be used as a symbol of unit. Among the several symbols of unity in different people in the world, such as taboos, cultures, songs, color and many others, dance is the most common way of expressing the sense of unity (Browning). In other words, dancing to a rhythm shows appreciation and acceptance despite the perspectives on can have.

Form of Exercise

This is because of the movements that are involved in dancing. It is proven that dancing can considerably improve one health by reducing the risk of some worse health conditions such as high blood pressure, weight gain and heart diseases (Browning). Just like any other exercise or sport, dancing has been incorporated in sports such as gymnastics, martial arts and figure skating (Luetzner).

Offers Mental and Physical Relaxation. A combination of music and a simple physical exercise are the most effectual way of setting one’s mind stress free. Dancing provides a quick and fun state that naturally relieves stress.

Form of Entertainment

Dancing and fun go hand in hand thus; it is the easiest way to happiness. Happiness can come from the activities one gets involves into will in dance groups, which include, making friends, dancing settings and of course learning new dance styles (Luetzner).

Source of Motivation and Inspiration

This is commonly in some games, competition and even sports such as basketball and football. The dancers can perform before, during the event and even on commercial breaks to keep both the fans and the participants motivated.

Source of Income

Dancing is a skill that if specialize can lead into career. So many professional dancers nowadays are able to form affiliates and make a living from training interested people and competitions (Browning).

Enhances education

Dancing is a major booster for both the old and the young. In children, dancing contributes a lot in terms of personal improvement hence enhancing their skills more so those necessary for better education. Research shows that dancing help in boosting self-esteem as well as confidence (Luetzner).

Social and political activity

Just like any other practice, dancing is also a social and political activity. The importance of dance is vividly understood during performance. As explained above, dance sends a message to the audience hence it is an important activity to the society at large.

Confidence Booster

Dancing being an exercise, it improves posture, strengthen muscles and bring out sense of them. Eventually, this state of body and mind eliminates doubts and fears and replaces them with confidence and thus good time (Luetzner).

Enhances Creativity

Lastly, d ance provides emotional outlet that helps a person to clearly reveal his or her feelings through coordinating body movement with music. It is this ability that translates back to the sense of creativity in the real world (Browning).

Works Cited

Browning, Sarah. The Importance of Dance . 2012. Web.

Luetzner Andreas. Benefits of Dance . 2012. Web.

  • Dance and Mathematics Relationship
  • African Dance Taught by Rujeko Dumbutshena
  • Classical Dance: Term Definition
  • Ruth St. Denis's Biography
  • Survey of Contemporary Dances
  • Hip Hop Dance
  • History of Balinese Dancing Art
  • Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring
  • Chicago (A-D)
  • Chicago (N-B)

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Dance, Sexuality, and Education Today: Observations for Dance Educators

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Essay on Importance Of Dance

Students are often asked to write an essay on Importance Of Dance in their schools and colleges. And if you’re also looking for the same, we have created 100-word, 250-word, and 500-word essays on the topic.

Let’s take a look…

100 Words Essay on Importance Of Dance

Expression through movement.

Dance is a powerful way to show feelings without talking. People can share joy, sadness, or any emotion by moving their bodies to music. This helps people understand each other better, even if they speak different languages.

Good for Health

Bringing people together.

Dance is a social activity that brings people close. At parties or festivals, everyone can join in the dancing, making new friends and celebrating together.

Cultural Importance

Different dances come from different places in the world. By learning these dances, people can learn about other cultures, their history, and their traditions, which helps everyone get along better.

250 Words Essay on Importance Of Dance

What is dance.

Dancing is great for your health. It makes your heart strong and helps you breathe better. It’s also good for your muscles and bones, just like running or jumping. When you dance, you are exercising, but it’s more fun than a regular workout.

Expressing Yourself

Dance lets you show how you feel without saying a word. You can be happy, sad, or excited, and you can share that through your dance moves. It’s a way to let out your emotions and can make you feel better when you’re down.

Dance is a way to bring people close. In a dance class or at a party, when you dance with others, you make friends. It helps people from different places understand each other because dance is a language everyone speaks.

Learning and Growing

Dance teaches you to listen and move at the same time. It helps kids learn about rhythm and timing. It can also make you more creative, as you think of new moves and ways to dance.

Dance is important because it’s good for health, helps you say what you feel, brings people together, and helps you learn. It’s a fun activity that everyone can enjoy, no matter how old they are. So, put on some music and let your body move to the beat!

500 Words Essay on Importance Of Dance

One of the main reasons dance is important is because it lets people express themselves. Just like you can use words to tell someone how you feel, you can use dance moves to show your joy, sadness, or excitement. It is a language without words that everyone, no matter where they are from or what language they speak, can understand. When dancers perform, they share their emotions with the audience, and sometimes, watching a dance can make us feel the same emotions too.

Health and Fitness

Dance is also great for our health. It is like a fun workout. When you dance, your heart beats faster, which is good for your body. It helps build strong muscles, and it can make you more flexible. For kids, dancing is especially good because it helps them grow healthy and strong. It also teaches them about balance and how to control their bodies.

Dance is a way to bring people together. In many cultures, dance is a big part of celebrations like weddings, birthdays, and festivals. It is a time when everyone, from little kids to grandparents, can join in, enjoy the music, and feel connected to one another. When people dance together, they can become friends even if they just met or if they do not speak the same language.

Learning and Growth

Creativity and confidence.

Dance encourages creativity. When you make up a dance, you are creating something no one else has ever done before. This helps your imagination grow. It also builds confidence. Learning to dance can be hard, but when you finally get the steps right, it feels great. This helps you believe in yourself and your abilities, not just in dance, but in other parts of life too.

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Home — Essay Samples — Life — Dance — The Health Benefits Of Dancing


Mental and Social Benefits of Dancing

  • Categories: Dance Recreation and Sports

About this sample


Words: 997 |

Published: Mar 18, 2021

Words: 997 | Pages: 3 | 5 min read

Table of contents

Introduction, what are the benefits of dancing, works cited.

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  • Leste-Lasserre, C. (2021). How dance benefits your brain. Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-athletes-way/202101/how-dance-benefits-your-brain
  • National Endowment for the Arts. (2015). The arts in early childhood: Social and emotional benefits of arts participation. Retrieved from https://www.arts.gov/sites/default/files/Arts-in-Early-Childhood-Report.pdf
  • Ratey, J. J. (2008). Spark: The revolutionary new science of exercise and the brain. Little, Brown Spark.
  • Sibley, B. A., & Etnier, J. L. (2003). The relationship between physical activity and cognition in children: A meta-analysis. Pediatric Exercise Science, 15(3), 243-256.
  • Tervo, R. C., Azuma, T., Fogarty, J., & Nelson, C. A. (2020). A guide for using the event-related optical signal (EROS) to study cognitive processes. Journal of Visualized Experiments, (155), e60688.
  • Yoon, S., & Coulton, C. (2015). Social benefits of physical activity in parks: A research synthesis. Leisure Sciences, 37(2), 145-162.

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importance of dance in education essay

How to Write Importance of Dance Essay – 2 Sample Essays

Writing an essay on the importance of dance can be a fun and interesting task. It allows you to explore the art form in greater detail while also providing insight into its cultural, physical and emotional benefits.

By exploring its history , analyzing how it has evolved over time , and discussing its various applications today, your essay will show readers why dance continues to be held in such high regard throughout many cultures worldwide.

Table of Contents

How to Write Importance of Dance Essay – A Step-By-Step Guide

You can write a compelling essay on the importance of dance by following these steps:

1. Research

3. organize.

Once you have a better understanding of each aspect, organize your thoughts into a logical structure that flows from one point to the next. Ensure each point is connected to the overall theme of your essay, and make sure there is a clear introduction and conclusion.

5. Proofread

Sample essays on the importance of dance, sample essay 1 – the importance of dance.

Dance is an effective form of exercise that can improve physical health and increase overall stamina. It also helps build strong muscles, improves coordination, and increases flexibility . Additionally, it can be a great way to relieve stress and get rid of excess energy in a fun and creative way. Furthermore, because dance requires concentration and focus, it can help improve mental acuity, memory, and the ability to problem-solve.

Sample Essay 2 – Importance of Dance

Dance has been around since the earliest days of humankind as a form of expression, communication , and healing. Throughout time, it has been used to celebrate, mourn, and even heal physical ailments. As cultures have evolved over time, so too has the way we dance.

In modern times, dance has evolved even further as people have embraced different genres, such as jazz and hip-hop. Despite this diversity , dance still continues to be used for communicating emotions and creating art in various ways. It is a great way to get exercise or practice artistic expression, but it can also be a powerful tool for connecting with other individuals on an emotional level.

In conclusion, dance is an important part of human history, and it has gone through many changes over the centuries in order to adapt to different societies. From its ancient beginnings as a religious ritual to its modern-day iteration that encompasses all types of music genres, dancing remains a powerful way for people to connect with each other and express themselves creatively. Therefore, it is important to continue to explore and appreciate all aspects of dance so that we can gain a deeper understanding of our own unique cultures.

Wrapping Up

Additionally, make sure to explore the history of dance and how it has changed over time in order to better understand its role in our lives today. By following these tips, you can create a compelling essay on the importance of dance and its many contributions to society.

Yusuf is interested in exploring the world around him and making meaningful connections with it. He then express these ideas with words for the world to enjoy. In his free time, Yusuf loves to spend time with books, nature & his family.

Importance Of Dance Student Evaluation

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Table of content

Different ways of evaluating dance:

Classroom evaluation helps in assessing a student’s capabilities, shortcomings, awkwardness, and areas of improvement that could help in learning the art. It helps the budding artists formulate new ways for self-improvement and beautify the art form. Additionally, without criticism and tests, it is impossible to develop a fresh outlook towards dance that every performer needs to achieve. The dimensions of students’ learning and growth could only be understood the individual is examined by a professional. Dance trainers after that work on plans and methods to bridge the gaps in knowledge and moulding the students in a pleasing way possible.

Since each genre of dance requires a different set of skills, the parameters on which a student is tested vary with the   dance forms . An institution that maintains excellence would mandatorily apply different assessment methods on a student and repeat the same in case the need be so. If a student is setting learning goals, it is only through assessment that the individual can realize to which degree it has been achieved. In the initial days, a student could face many inhibitions or queries related to the genre. To eliminate these various performance assessment techniques are laid out in detail by respective instructors.

Here are the five bases of dance that play a crucial role in grading a performer during the evaluation-

  • Body Alignment- it is undoubtedly a key area of improvement and can be fine-tuned over time. There are different measures to improve one’s body alignment through proper utilization of space and music. Dance instructors always maintain a firm stance while teaching the fundamental ways to hone a dancer’s posture. It does not merely help one to become a better dancer but also soothes viewers who would watch the performance unfold before their eyes.
  • Dance concepts- understanding and due implementation of ideas are necessary to facilitate the flow of a professional dancer. Without concepts, the superficiality of learning becomes apparent. In this regard, different instructors take myriad ways to convey the thoughts and history related to the art form, such as conducting workshops or verbally communicating them.
  • Body Transitions- the serenity of dance lies in smooth body transitions without abrupt pauses or confusion on stage. With years of dedication, a learner could adopt individualized ways to perfect the skill of effortless transition from one body posture to others. Grading scale to weigh how far a student can implement strategies of natural body movements is extremely strict. Since it cannot be learnt overnight, a student can only infuse the skill with daily evaluation and discipline.
  • The idea of Music- rhythm plays a crucial role in keeping the audiences glued to performance or appreciate it even years after it is over. Musicality or sense of synchronization should be imbibed within the student. It might also be helpful when a student is learned enough to become a professional dancer. Little knowledge of music and synchronization could have a more profound impact on the performance and leave the audience disconcerted. Instructors always observe the limitations that a beginner can face while harmonizing beat or rhythm within the dance. If a dancer is being assessed, dance trainers would always put a high value on this aspect.
  • Quality and learning- albeit this sounds abrupt at the onset, but it is significant in becoming a real artist sans any self-consciousness detrimental to an excellent performance. How effectively a student is expressing and conveying the   language of dance   depends considerably on how far the dynamic of the art has touched the student. Since there is always room for improvement, the primary focus should be on perfection and resilience.

Since the goal is to aide in student development, there are a couple of ways by which dance instructors manage a thorough review-

  • Tests and Screening – frequency of such screening schedules does not merely allow the teacher to have a grasp on students’ progress but also helps students gauge the same. In dance, there are multiple theories and concepts related to space and balance, which require a substantial amount of time to process. However, with due evaluation strategies, instructors make sure that students are not lagging behind.
  • Self-assessment- within the four walls of the classroom, instructors allow for self-assessment so that students could themselves figure out the lacks. Besides, it provides an opportunity to have a clearer picture of their development over the days.
  • Peer Assessment- the stiff competition to outperform and improve on a daily basis has made peer assessment extremely relevant. One can always benefit from a coherent set of criticisms obtained from peers while mastering the art form. From body posture to maintaining focus, this type of evaluation has the potential to take different measures into its kaleidoscopic view to assure faster improvement and dedication towards dance. At each level of learning the art form, different criteria are set to make sure the student is meeting each irrespective of the difficulties that there might be.
  • Modules and Practical assessment- the presence of practice tests is not altogether missing from the evaluation. It provides a better opportunity to a student wherein the individual and read the concepts with wholeheartedness and relate them to the genre. Frequently, the instructors prepare for a cumulative process to discuss the outcome of the assessment. Students are grouped together where each student is provided with a clear view of their progress. Many times, the instructors set different standards for these students as per their learning efficiency and capacity.

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After the tests, results are carefully interpreted before disseminating the results to the students. A supportive environment that encourages learning irrespective of hurdles and failures is significant to every student. Professional dance trainers never flinch from investing diverse methods to appropriate the genre for each student. Many beginners prefer to start with a small group of leaners since this always carries a better scope for extensive training though not mandatorily. However, as evident, the process of learning could only be complete with supervision and self-criticism and an unyielding resolution to better oneself from the last time.

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Importance of dance

No celebration is complete without some exuberant or controlled, dancing. Every culture around the world has its own form of dance, and these dance forms are enthusiastically embraced not just by people of that cultural group, but by other people around the world as well. Dancing is something we associate with good and happy times. We dance with friends , lovers, strangers, and even all alone, and we enjoy ourselves no matter what. You would be hard put to find a single person who does not enjoy dancing. So what is it about dancing that makes it such an integral part of every person? In this article, we will try to break down the effects dancing has on us.

importance of dance

Acts as an ice-breaker

Perhaps the most important effect that dancing has on us is that it acts as a social glue. Almost every joyous celebration involves some amount of dancing. Social gatherings such as weddings and birthdays are often punctuated with vigorous bouts of dancing to music. Dancing is an intimate form of enjoyment, and hence brings people closer. People meet on the dance floor, and dancing with someone increases the sense of intimacy. When you start to dance with someone at a party, you don’t simply move to the music, you also strike up a conversation with your dance partner. This way, you are able to create an atmosphere of ease and get to know people better. Hence, dancing does act as an ice-breaker.

Form of expression

Dance, like any other form of art, is a mode of expression. A well-choreographed dance can convey moods and emotions just as articulately as the written word, or the music that accompanies it. Through dancing, you can express what you are feeling at any point in time. Everyone knows the feeling of intense joy and its instantaneous expression through some impromptu dance steps. If you are feeling victorious, you can let off some steam by breaking into some dance moves. When you are slow dancing with your partner, your body moves in accordance with the love and peace that you feel at the moment. When you are dancing with your father or mother at your wedding, you express your feelings of contentment, happiness, and security at being with your most loved ones.

Anyone can dance, anytime

Dancing is an activity that requires little to no effort on your part. Sure, many of us are trained dancers, and we spend years and many hours of the day in extensive training. But even for those of us who have never received any formal training, dancing is something that comes naturally. It doesn’t matter whether you are as graceful as a swan or as left-footed as a duck with a limp, you will still be dancing as exuberantly as the next person when the occasion arises. In fact, that is one of the best things about dancing; it does not require you to be great at it, and it does not even require an occasion or a partner. You can dance at a party, or simply because the mood strikes you and the music is infectious. You can dance with your friends, your partner, with your four-footed friends, and even alone, and the experience will be just as great.

Is great exercise

And it is not just about the exhilaration. Dancing also imparts some very noticeable benefits to our mind and body. All forms of dancing require extensive body movements, and that makes for great exercise . You will be hard put to find a dancer who does not have a very fit physique. This is because dancing requires immense flexibility and the ability to move in a brisk and graceful manner. A dance session leaves you breathless, exhilarated, and quite physically tired. Aerobics, which is a popular form of exercise, combines dance moves with traditional exercise techniques. Dancing can thus form a very effective fitness regimen for all ages.

Can rake in cash

Dancing is one of the most celebrated art forms in the world and hence offers immense financial potential. A dancer can earn millions by performing in shows by themselves or as part of a dance troupe. They can open academies for the performing arts, and it is well-known that dancers enjoy a pace of prime importance in the entertainment industry. Showbiz would not be half of what it is today had dancers not been included in performances everywhere.

Dancing is good not just for your body, but for your soul as well. A truly unhappy person will not be able to work up the energy to dance, but if they do engage in a bout of dancing, they will certainly be able to forget their trials and tribulations for a short while. Dancing is exhilarating, and a single session will leave you tired but happy. As Oprah said, each day is an occasion to kick off your shoes and dance.

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