It’s that time of year again. After a year of lessons, costume fittings and repeated choreography, local dance recitals are on the program. Of the three major dance studios in and around Habersham, Cornelia’s Premiere Dance and Performing Art Academy had their recital on Saturday 16th April and Rhythm Academy Dance Company had their recital on Saturday 7th May. Only the Clarkesville School of Dance has its recital coming up next weekend on Saturday, May 14.
In honor of all the teachers, children and families who have put in countless hours preparing for these recitals, this is a great opportunity to remember what makes dance important in children’s lives.
Children need something physical to do
There is no doubt that physical activity is important for children. They were born to move, run and jump. They have unlimited energy that needs an outlet. And kids today get bored quickly and easily.
Many parents turn to sports to burn off some of that energy. Walk past the local fields every Saturday and you’ll see the crowds for football, baseball and soccer. There are also basketball, tennis and swimming teams.
One activity that doesn’t receive as much attention in creating opportunities for physical activity is dancing, but the benefits of dance training are also enormous.
The benefits of dance training
Physical benefits: Most sporting activities get kids moving. Dance does that and more. Washington Parent, an online magazine, credits dancing with improving “flexibility, coordination, balance, range of motion, endurance, strength, and posture.” According to SportsRec, other physical benefits come from the repetitive motions of dance training and include improved “muscle tone, correction of poor posture, increased balance and coordination, and improvement in overall cardiovascular health”.
The physical benefits are so great that some NFL players have started using dance in their training routines. They are drawn to dancing to improve their flexibility, endurance, balance and speed, while strengthening their legs, knees and ankles.
Social advantages: Some sports provide opportunities for children to socialize with others, develop long-term relationships, and learn to work as a team. Dancing is one of them and can help even shy children develop relationships with other children their own age.
Educational benefits: Dancing requires a commitment of time, the ability to listen and follow directions, and the discipline to work over and over again to learn a new step or skip. These skills are also necessary in life. According to Family Talk Magazine, “students who regularly participate in dance classes generally tend to perform better academically than their non-participating peers.”
Positive self-esteem: Learning a dance, its steps, choreography and musical rhythms builds self-confidence in children, and self-confidence is a major component of having positive self-esteem.
Local dance schools
If you’re interested in enrolling your child in dance, check out these area dance studios:
The Clarkesville School of Dance is located at 1955 Hollywood Highway in Clarkesville. They enroll students in summer and fall classes. Tickets are still available for their recitals by calling 706-754-9984.
The Premiere Dance and Performing Art Academy is located at 127 Hodges Street in Cornelia. For more information, call 706-778-2015.
Rhythm Academy Dance Company is located at 147 North Alexander Street in Toccoa. For more information, call 706-282-1931.