6 Reasons to Dance Your Heart Out!

maria pontillo dance class hip hop zumba

Music is one of the biggest sources of energy and motivation for humans regardless of their ethnicity, religion, background or culture.  People across the world use music as an outlet to relieve stress, escape to a happier reality, increase positive energy and even kick back and relax with loved ones. Upbeat music in particular offers great motivational support during an intense workout session. Whether you are participating in a group fitness class, running a few miles or spinning, music has the ability to push you beyond your comfort zone.  One of my golden fitness rules is to continue to switch up your workout regimen so you don’t reach the inevitable plateau. Have you ever considered changing up your workout routine by adding a little dance flavor to your cardio activities? Whether it’s Hip Hop, Zumba, Merengue, Ballet, Salsa, or Step, a 60 minute session of hard core dance moves can challenge you to burn more calories, define your core and allow you to express your personality in ways you’ve never seen before!

I am excited to announce that I am hosting a 90 Minute Dance Jam class with the Zumba Queen herself, Greta Moncayo this month! This huge dance event will take place on the basketball courts at Nova Southeastern University’s Don Taft Center in Davie, Florida NEXT Tuesday, September 17th from 7 to 8:30PM. Whether you’re a dance newbie or pro, join myself, Greta and about 100 others as we dance to electronic dance music, hip hop and classic zumba dance beats with a LIVE DJ! For more details & information, check out my Facebook page.

Read below to learn 6 benefits that dance can offer your body and mind, and consider joining my 90 Minute Dance Jam on September 17th as we dance our hearts out!

1. Improve memory – A new study in The New England Journal of Medicine suggests that dancing may boost your memory and prevent dementia. Evidence reveals that aerobic exercise (i.e. dancing, swimming, jogging) can reverse volume loss in the hippocampus, the part of the brain that controls memory. According to scientific data, the hippocampus naturally shrinks during late adulthood, which often leads to impaired memory and sometimes dementia. Whether you are being proactive in your 20’s or 30’s or are in your 50’s or 60’s and want to avoid memory-loss related diseases in the near future, the present is the perfect time to start incorporating dance into your exercise regimen!

2. Work on your rhythm and improve your core – By incorporating dance into your exercise plan, you will have the opportunity to work on your dance moves, rhythm, grace and overall presence on the dance floor! Practice usually makes perfect, especially when it comes to dancing!  By working on your rhythm, your body moves in planes that allows your core muscles to become defined, leading to a flat and toned midsection! Next time you consider doing crunches as a part of your ab workout, try dancing instead!

3. Improve & maintain flexibility – Dance challenges the body to move in various planes that promote flexibility to the joints and tissues. Flexibility and range of motion are essential functions that the human body needs to live a pain-free and injury-free life. The day after an intense weight training or long-distance running workout, ease your soreness with a little dance!

4.  Achieve weight loss goals – Whether you want to lose a few pounds or achieve a complete total-body makeover, any variation of dance can help you reach those goals! Dancing improves cardiovascular endurance over a sustained period of time and will really get your heart rate going!  My hip hop dance class offers great cardiovascular benefits that can successfully allow you to achieve your weight loss goals while having fun with others!

5.  Reduce stress & improve mindset – After a long day of work or school, it is important to dedicate some time to yourself. A great way to enjoy your personal time is to exercise, which ultimately will lead to the creation of happy endorphins! Whether you are dancing alone in your room or with a group, dancing to upbeat music has been known to reduce depression, promote positive energy and thus, reduce stress!

6.  Boost your energy – If you feel like you’re dragging during the day and don’t have enough energy to complete all of your work and personal responsibilities, take a dance class! Research published in The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition found that a weekly dance class can improve physical performance and increase energy levels among adults.

Dancing just once a week can offer so many positive benefits — these are just a few of the top reasons why I love dance!  If you live in South Florida, you should attend my Dance Jam class on September 17th! Even if you live in another city, consider researching and visiting a dance studio in your local neighborhood! If you are interested in attending my Dance Jam Session, please email me for further details and pricing: Info@MariaPontillo.com. For more fitness and physical therapy tips, follow me on Instagram and Twitter, and “Like” my Official Facebook Fan Page!

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