Monday, March 21, 2011

Dancing with the Stars is Back, dust off your shoes and Dance!

The wildly popular Dancing with the stars is back for its 12th season, can you guess who will win?

Watching is fun, but don’t be a wall hugger when it comes to going out and dancing some yourself. The Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons position on physical activity lists dancing as a good option for your daily physical activity.

Some Weight-Bearing Exercises to Build Strong Bones:

• Brisk walking, jogging, and hiking.
• Yard work such as pushing a lawnmower and heavy gardening.
• Team sports, such as soccer, baseball, and basketball.
• Dancing, step aerobics, and stair climbing.
• Tennis and other racquet sports.
• Skiing, skating, karate, and bowling.
• Weight training with free weights or machines.

Well, as a Physical Therapist, I like to tell people simply stay active is good, and dancing is a great way to stay active. Dancing helps with

1. Flexibility

Most dance classes begin with a warm up and stretch. If you are at Vinnie’s wedding, make sure you work your way up to DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince with by starting with some Frank Sinatra. Dancing requires motion, motion requires flexibility, and flexibility requires warmth, so warm up first with light dancing. Once you feel “your groove”, go ahead and tackle the fast ones.

2. Strength

Large and small muscle groups are challenged dancing. Mini-squats, movement change in directions, and small jumps/steps all contribute to building muscle mass.

3. Endurance

Most weddings and dance clubs end appropriately with a slow dance, giving you time to cool down after a long night of movement. The longer the Heart rate stays elevated, hopefully in your training zone [220-your age) * .7], the more you can endure physically in life (and some say mentally) with better physical endurance.

So when you’re watching the first episode of Dancing with the stars, plug in your Wii or Xbox each commercial break, plug in a good interactive dance game (Just Dance 2, etc.) and strut to your own dance moves….it’s for your health!