Online Dance Classes for Seniors: A New Way to Workout
Fitness studios and gyms are opening back up now and some people are returning to their semi-normal activity schedule. However, as a senior that may not be the best option for keeping yourself safe in these uncertain times. It is still really important to be physically active, even if you are stuck at home. So, what can you do to stay active, be healthy and still have fun like you did before? A great option would be to take advantage of the many different online dance classes for seniors. There are a variety of online platforms that offer hundreds of dance classes for any level of dancer and they can make staying healthy and fit really fun!
What Are Online Dance Classes?
Online dance classes are similar to going to a regular dance class, but instead of participating in a studio with a group of people, you can do them from the comfort of your own home. You can do this through using your computer, tablet, smartphone or smart TV to watch and participate in the classes. Most companies that offer classes make it very simple to subscribe to their service and then access the classes from any of the above devices.
There are plenty of different styles of dance classes that you can participate in from Jazzercise, to ballet, to Zumba. The options are incredibly diverse depending on what service you use. The cost of these class subscriptions can vary by a lot as well. You can find videos for free online or pay to have access to subscription services. I’ll talk more about some of the different companies you can sign up with further below, but you are probably wondering what exactly the benefits of online dance classes are for seniors.
The Benefits of Dance
There are a lot of benefits to both your physical and mental health if you participate in online dance classes at home as a senior.
Firstly, you are minimizing your risk of exposure to disease outside of your home. You are helping to increase your body’s mobility by using different movements that you do not do in everyday life. Although you are not physically in the studio in a class, some of the platforms that you can use for online dance classes allow you to interact with the teacher and other participants. This means that you can still have social interactions and ask for help with your instruction.
On top of these benefits, there are scientifically proven health benefits for seniors who participate in dance classes. A 2014 study published in Science Direct titled The Effect of Dance on Depressive Symptoms in Nursing Home Residents found “that dance-based exercise can reduce the amount of depressive symptoms in nursing home residents.” A 2019 case study examined whether doing ballet as a senior can help with improving brain function. This study found that “more challenging class content led to a greater sense of satisfaction and pleasure among the class participants... part of the pleasure of dancing ballet as an older adult are the physical and cognitive challenges that are embedded in the structure of ballet.”
These are just two of the many studies that have found conclusive evidence of the benefits of dance-based exercises for seniors. Now that we know learning dance styles can be very beneficial, what are some of the options that you have for participating in classes online?
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Options for Online Dance Classes
There are so many options for you to take online dance classes. The price range of subscriptions or viewing can range from free to paying a monthly or yearly fee for access to the classes. Some classes also have an interactive aspect, while others you just tune into the instructor running the class. Below I have listed some options for you to compare and see which would be best for you.
Peloton is a company that sells at-home workout equipment, but they also have a live class subscription service. Through their subscription service you get access to their live studio schedule and do not have to buy any of their products in order to use it. The cost is $12.99 a month and you get access to bootcamps, weight training, cardio, yoga, meditation, cycling, walking and running classes. The dance classes are spread out within the cardio, weight training and bootcamp classes. Their classes are also all live and have an interactive component with other participants.
Mindbody is a great way for you to support your local dance studios without actually going into the studio for the class. This platform is a place for local studios to provide their studio schedules that are for in-person or online classes. You can use their app to pay for single classes or sign up for a membership with the studio you like that offers online dance classes. Once you are signed up you will be able to access a link to the live class in order to participate and interact with the instructor and the other students. This app is really good if there is a studio that you were going to for classes before that now offers an online option. The cost will depend on the studio.
CLI Studios is the subscription to go with if you want access to only dance classes. They specialize in providing only online dance classes and their subscription fee is fairly reasonable at $99 for one year. The classes offered are probably one of the largest varieties available online and are for any level of dancer. They have beginner/intermediate classes and advanced level classes. One of my favorite features of CLI Studios is that they record all of their classes so you can access them later if you miss a class you really wanted to take.
Finally, YouTube has millions of different dance classes online from thousands of different instructors and they are all posted for free. If you do not have the budget to pay for a subscription service, then this would be a great place for you to go for online dance classes. However, there are some downfalls. Some videos have advertisements placed throughout the class content, which can be good if you need a break, but bad if placed in an awkward spot. You have to take time to search for and find the right instructors. Finally, you need to know exactly what style of dance you are looking for in order to get the video you want. It can be a bit cumbersome if you are not sure what you want to try.
Whichever company you choose to go with for your dance classes, just remember to have fun and move your coffee table out of the way!