Ballet takes flexibility, muscle strength, and endurance. It's a great way to have fun and increase your fitness level. There is a lot of stretching and muscle conditioning involved, especially in barre work. You will find that ballet not only benefits your physical stamina but has great psychological and spiritual benefits as well.
The Physical Benefits of Ballet
Beginner ballet classes aren't as physically demanding as advanced classes. Both kids and adults will find that the physical demands of novice classes involve 8 basic exercises using the barre. As you progress through to advanced techniques, you will find that you are increasing your flexibility, muscle strength, balance, and agility.
Ballet is also a weight-bearing exercise, known to increase bone density. It also helps keep your bones in good working order, helping to prevent bone degeneration in older adults. Even football players take ballet because it increases coordination and balance.
The Psychological Benefits of Ballet
Stretching yourself beyond your limits can boost your self-esteem and confidence. You don't just follow the techniques of dance moves in a methodical way. You also learn to move your body in creative ways as well. Ballet can lead to less stress, give you more energy to do the things that you love to do, and improve your overall mood.
The coordination doesn't stop with the physical benefits of ballet. There is also a significant connection between your body and your brain. The brain's frontal lobes, for instance, play a key role in a dancer's life by regulating emotions and motor skills.
Taking a ballet class with others also helps increase socialization. This is especially important in our post-Covid world. As shutdowns decline and masks begin to take residence in your medicine cabinet and not on your face, getting out with others is just the ticket for emotional and psychological well-being.
The Spiritual Benefits of Ballet
When you practice ballet, you can practice mindfulness. Your attention centers on each step, each arabesque, each plié. As you "get in the zone," you become more body aware. This body awareness centers the dancer in a grounding of mind, body, and spirit that harnesses ballet's purposeful movements.
Finding Ballet Classes Near You
You can find classes at your local YMCA, senior center, or school. Those interested in serious ballet work can enroll at a ballet academy. You will have a choice whether to enroll in either formal or informal classes. Whichever one you choose, you will still get an aerobic workout, maybe make a few new friends, and have fun. Contact a local ballet academy, such as Heidi Knight School of Dance, to learn more.