Get dancing to prevent broken bones

Are you looking to improve your balance and reduce the likelihood of falls?

Have you ever questioned whether the exercise you do is really beneficial? While aerobic activities can help increase heart fitness, they do little to improve balance. With this in mind, getting out on the dance floor could help to reduce falls and resulting broken bones.

Published in the May issue of the Australian Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, How diverse was the leisure time physical activity of older Australians over the past decade?, looks at the results of a study of the activity patterns of 22,000 Australians aged over 65. Walking, a good aerobic exercise which can help increase heart fitness, was undertaken by 45.6 per cent of respondents. Yet dancing (2.1 per cent), tai chi (1.4 per cent) and yoga (1.1 per cent), which all help with balance, are not regularly undertaken.

Improved balance can help to reduce the number of falls, and the resulting broken bones, experienced by older Australians. When you consider that in 2008­–09 one in every ten days spent in hospital by an Australian aged 65 and over was the result of a fall-related injury, then improving balance and reducing falls is every bit as important as improving heart fitness.

We’re not suggesting that you give up any form of aerobic exercise, but perhaps you should consider busting a few moves on the dance floor, or partaking in the odd yoga session to make your fitness regime more rounded.

Read the full report at the Australian Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. 


    To make a comment, please register or login
    28th Aug 2017
    I can vouch for the benefits of dance in improving, not just balance, but also flexibility and mobility. I've been practising Nia for about 10 years now, starting with classes with Sophie Marsh in Brisbane and, since moving to the Gold Coast, enjoying twice-weekly Nia classes in Burleigh and Tugun. Nia combines the energies of dance, martial arts and healing arts like Yoga, so great for all round fitness. Best of all, it's fun, so good for the body, mind and spirit.
    28th Aug 2017
    I forgot to say, I'm 74 and feel great.

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