Dance and Healthy Brains
Last week I was preparing for a Kripalu Podcast interview. In my preparation for the interview I found a number of research studies that have been conducted regarding how dance is the best activity for brain health--boosting our memory and reducing risks for dementia upwards of 76%!!
As I age in years, I Iike so many of us want to retain a healthy body and mind. I'm not sure how many dance steps I would need to do that would cure my chronic "where have I left my keys now?" syndrome. But who knows?
The research that was reported in New England Journal of Medicine shows that learning dance steps is key to exercising your brain and boosting memory power, better than playing a musical instrument, doing crossword puzzles etc.!
And that's not all, research also indicates that through movement coordination found in dance we increase our ability to process information more efficiently and quickly. Motor "thinking" helps with our brain thinking!! When you can't wrap your head around some problem and it feels overwhelming, then its take to dance!
If you are scientifically inclined here are the reasons for dance being so powerful of a memory booster. It has to do with the constant changing from right and left sides of the body which exercises both hemispheres of our brain along with engaging our limbic/emotional center.
And the correlation between increased mental processing ability and motor expressivity is that our cerebellum, our "movement brain" which is only 1/3 the size of total brain size yet hosts 50% of the neurons and is intimately linked to our cerebral cortex or thinking brain. So our movement brain primes our thinking brain. So Descartes move over because, "I move, therefore I am"
Consider turning on people's brain and body health through training to be a
Shake Your Soul: YogaDance Teacher.