by Elizabeth Rooney
Entering into the holiday season, we’re reflecting on the things in life that truly deliver happiness- pure, untarnished, transcendental joy. Throughout history, across all ages and spanning the globe, one such happiness-generator is dance. Whether it’s watching a jaw-dropping performance, taking a spin on the dance floor with a sweetheart, or just breaking out into a good ol’ fashion dance party in the kitchen, dance has the power to lift spirits.
Here are 5 reasons to be thankful for dance this holiday season:
Shake off a bad day: Not only does dance put you in a great mood, it reduces stress, and gives you a great work out. So put on your dancing shoes and let the endorphins flow; you will be feeling stress-free and happier in no time!
Make lifelong friends: From tots to adults, a dance class is the perfect setting to make new friends and branch out socially.
Robert Battle, artistic director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, shared with Dance Informa Magazine:
“As a kid, I was painfully shy when it came to speaking to people, and especially speaking in front of people. Dance gave me a non-verbal way of communicating with many people at once. It is one of the most primal forms of expression. Dance is what connects us to the past, present and future. To dance is to know something about your history, something about people, and something about the endless possibilities that lie ahead.”
The Dance Academy (TDA) in Holland, PA has been teaching students in Lower Bucks County since 1987, with little ones starting as young as 2 years old. In fact, TDA’s dancers have remained so engaged that several students have come back as faculty to pass down that experience to the next generation of dancers.
Break Down Barriers: Dance for Kindness is a worldwide movement that teaches others that even though we are different, we are capable of living in a world of peace. November 13th, 2015 was World Kindness Day. In cities across the world, people will experience flash mobs to promote kindness, positive human interaction, leadership, teamwork, and positive self expression.
Maintain strength: The power of dance is being used in a very special way to help treat those suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive disorder that affects the nervous system and commonly causes stiffness and slower movements. Learning complex dance moves helps people with Parkinson’s Disease focus on what body parts they are moving. Chelsea Clinton from NBC Nightly News reports on a special organization called “Dance for PD” who put together dance classes for men and women suffering from PD. Carol E, a woman who was diagnosed with PD over 15 years ago told us that her main focus was to keep healthy and dance!
Dance For Good: There are so many amazing organizations spreading powerful messages through dance. Locally, dancers also contribute to the community in so many ways. In October, young dancers from The Dance Academy dressed up in their favorite costumes and each donated a dollar to the Down Syndrome Awareness program. TDA’s Fall Food Drive, which helps support local families in need with food assistance for Thanksgiving, also raised over 400 pounds of food donations! With each dancer more than willing to help and spread the word, local organizations are benefiting from their generous contributions. This holiday season The Dance Academy will also be participating in Toys For Tots, a non profit organization that donates thousands of toys each year to children in need.
So this Thanksgiving holiday, give thanks to the beautiful, impactful art of dance (and perhaps even give it a whirl)!
This article is presented by The Dance Academy. Since 1987, The Dance Academy in Holland, PA has been offering professional dance training with a personal touch, instilling the love of dance to students and families throughout Bucks County. Under the direction of Miss Donnajean Kline (BFA in Dance, Temple University) and staffed by a group of highly-trained instructors, The Dance Academy has acquired countless awards and accolades each year at local, national, and international competitions. Through recitals, competitions, advertising publications, professional companies, and tours; Dance Academy
students are spreading their passion for dance both here in the States as well as on international stages.
Last year, TDA danced their way through Newtown to some Frozen favorites. Look for them on Sunday, December 6th at the 2015 Newtown Holiday Parade!