Dancing Makes You Smarter

Here is yet another article about the benefits that physical exercise, more specifically dance, can have on your brain!


by Richard Powers

For centuries, dance manuals and other writings have lauded the health benefits of dancing, usually as physical exercise.  More recently we’ve seen research on further health benefits of dancing, such as stress reduction and increased serotonin level, with its sense of well-being.

Then most recently we’ve heard of another benefit:  Frequent dancing apparently makes us smarter.  A major study added to the growing evidence that stimulating one’s mind can ward off Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia, much as physical exercise can keep the body fit.  Dancing also increases cognitive acuity at all ages.You may have heard about the New England Journal of Medicine report on the effects of recreational activities on mental acuity in aging.   Here it is in a nutshell.

The Reason for Recess

As I was reading this week’s edition of TIME magazine, I can across this article by Alice Park called “The Reason for Recess” that briefly touches upon how physical activity may be extremely beneficial for your brain to achieve its top performance.  I thought it might be a good article to share as we start the new year and we are busy making our resolutions.  Perhaps to become the best musicians we can be – we should also get out there and move our bodies!

Happy New Year!  

Here is the text to the article which I cut and paste.

The Reason for Recess: Active Children May Do Better in School by Alice Park.  

First Lady Michelle Obama is constantly promoting her “let’s move” message to Americans, and she may be onto something. Physical activity does the body good, and there’s growing evidence that it helps the brain too.
Researchers in the Netherlands report that children who get more exercise, whether at school or on their own, tend to have higher GPAs and better scores on standardized tests. In a review of 14 studies that looked at physical activity and academic performance, investigators found that the more children moved, the better their grades were in school, particularly in the basic subjects of math, English and reading.