I love to dance. I’m pretty sure my love affair started in the kitchen, dancing with my Momma and our six dogs. The “kitchen dance” (dancing around the kitchen for no reason other than you feel like moving) is still one of my favorite ways to move (cue Friday night dance party).
I love dance as a form of movement and fitness and I knew I wasn’t alone so I reached out to my fellow Vega employees (better known as Vegatopians) to see what they love the most.
Five Vegatopians opened up about the style of dance they can’t get enough of, the reasons they love dance and more. Consider these your top reasons to dance.
- Mixes Up Your Routine
Todd Al, Strategic Accounts Marketing Specialist, is a big believer that fitness should be diverse, and interesting. It should also challenge and surprise both your mind and body in new ways regularly. Todd is an avid runner and has been dancing off and on since he was eight years old.
If you want to get out and dance but aren’t sure where to start, take a cue from Todd and check out local community centers and dance organizations for events in your area. He took a break from busting a move for a few years and has since incorporated it back into his life again. He’s done everything from taking short swing dance classes to dancing all night to a live band through local social dance organizations.
- Is a Safe Place to be Expressive
Paige Snyder, Vega Regional Educator, loves pole dance so much she’s been doing it for about five years. Why pole? It’s safe space to be expressive. Paige says “S Factor, my dance studio, fosters a safe place to express any emotion. Excitement over a promotion, nourishing a broken heart, love you feel for family, friends, life or a partner, anger or frustration about social justice issue or whatever is happening in your life; you can express it all through movement. Engaging all of your muscles in a way that feels positive, strong, and empowering creates a healthy outlet for expression.”
- Helps You Get in Touch With Your Body
Looking for a great way to literally shake up your workout routine and get outside your comfort zone? That’s how Chantal Denis, Vega Chef, describes dancing. She says “dancing is a great way to push myself out of my comfort zone, which is somehow both empowering and often laughter-inducing.” She loves how dancing allows her to be in touch with her body and really feel the music.
- Allows You to Express Yourself, Go With the Flow
For Jose Gonzalez, Director of Digital Marketing and break dancer, dance is a great cardio workout and stress relief. He loves it because it’s an opportunity to be expressive and go with the flow. If you want to break out into break dancing let Jose show you how it’s done.
- Doesn’t Need a Partner
Dance is for all ages, all abilities, and as Amber Kennedy, Vega Content Manager (and Lindy Hop swing dancer) says, you don’t have to wait until you have a partner to learn a social dance. Do it for you. Just get out there, and you’ll find a community of willing leads or follows to dance with.
Getting active after her son was born meant finding time amidst work and parenting to fit in fitness. Amber wanted something that was fun first, and also happens to be a good workout. Dance was it! With her love of all things retro, Lindy Hop combines energetic big band jazz with an excuse to wear saddle shoes and a twirl-worthy dress with joyful (and challenging!) movement that makes her feel like she can do anything. You know that “runner’s high” runners talk about? She gets that same feeling from a night on the swing dance floor.
Some Friday nights you’ll find her on the dance floor for up to three hours, and while she dances until her face hurts from smiling, there’s no question that a breathless, sweaty night of swing is as much of a cardio workout as fitness activities she considers far less fun. Amber’s son shares her inability to resist the urge to break out in dance when the music strikes. As he takes jazz and hip hop classes himself—often one boy in a class full of girls—she takes him along to all-ages swing dance events sometimes, and she considers her regular dancing a positive model to normalize the idea that a love of dance knows no gender (lots of men dance, too!)
- Makes You Feel Like a BOSS
What about me? I love dance because it makes me feel like a boss. I feel like I can take on the world and nothing can get in my way. Recently I’ve started taking Beyoncé-inspired dance workshops where I get together with a group of fabulous people and for an hour each week we own the stage like we’re on tour.
If you can’t get to a class or aren’t ready to head out to a community dance group, schedule 10 minutes (actually schedule it, book it in as you would any other appointment) and do a light routine in the comfort of your home. There are loads of videos on YouTube, any style, difficulty level and duration you’d like. Or forget the video, crack up the music and start moving your body. You’d be surprised how quickly you could turn a dull evening into a party.
Are you about to search for a song to jam out to? Yeah you are. I thought so.
Before you go, I hope you take away that the rock star feeling dance gives you spans gender, age and style. It’s liberating, freeing and in the words of Chantal Denis, hella fun!
Note: Consult your health care provider before starting any exercise regimen.