Are you missing a gap in the dance market?

alt With the average life expectancy ever increasing, it is more important than ever to recognise new opportunities to encourage good health and wellbeing.

A vast majority of you, our customers, are likely to teach young boys and girls under the age of 18, learning dance as an extracurricular activity or to pursue their passion for a future career in dance. But for those students who do not pursue dance into a future career why should their interest in dance stop? We say if you start dancing, keep dancing and don’t stop dancing!

A recent study found that the benefits of dancing for older people are not fully appreciated. The results found that dancing has therapeutic benefits for older people; including physical, mental and social advantages.

With an aging population and the prediction that by 2030 the number of over sixties will exceed 20 million, there is an increased pressure on the NHS and other medical and social care organisations. As a result, many individuals are opening up to new ideas to tackle health and social challenges.

Whilst it is widely understood that dance has physical benefits for all ages, it also has social, cognitive, and emotional benefits for the older generation. The report identifies that the social and community aspects of dancing were strong benefits with ‘an activity for health and wellbeing’ being the most commonly cited purpose for dancing, closely followed by ‘an artistic experience’.

The survey also highlighted that teachers leading dance activities for older people need support in order for the health benefits of dancing to be relayed. Teachers developing dance opportunities, with added support from allied health professions, discussed the importance of this opportunity to enhance the health and wellbeing of the older generation; whilst also addressing the challenges of how dance can be embedded into health organisations. An observation by one respondent from the survey said “we need some support in helping to get dance taken more seriously by GPs”.

It is hoped that from this survey, stronger relationships between healthcare organisations and dance practices can be built in order to enhance knowledge and foster innovation. There should be regular, affordable and accessible training and development opportunities for artist which addresses skills and age-specific and health knowledge of dancing.

Do you currently teach dance to the older generation? If so, we would love to hear from you!

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