According to a new study, taking dancing lessons is actually helping your brain's memory function. Dance lessons are a mix of exercise, social interaction, and learning that has been found to have positive effects on the brain's fornix. This was found from a study done by Aga Burzynska, director of the BRAiN laboratory and her fellow researchers. They followed more than 170 healthy adults between the ages of 60 and 79. The participants were put in groups to be tested and had to participate in four different activities:
- Aerobic exercise that involved walking laps around the gym
- Walking and also taking a nutritional supplement.
- Light stretching and balance exercises.
- Dance lessons led by an experienced dance instructor. The focus was on learning social dance forms, such as Contra and English Country dancing, in a way that challenged both their minds and their motor skills.
At the beginning and end of each period, the participants underwent an MRI . The MRI allowed researched to see how the volume of white matter in their brain were affected. It was found that most participants saw a decline in brain white matter during the six months they were studied. No previous study has suggested that older adults lose white matter over such a short span of time. Those who exercised saw less of a decline. There was only one group that didn't show such signs. The dancing group actually had an increase of white matter.
The results were in, dancing improves memory function.
So if you haven't already, sign up for a dancing class. You'll be able to learn something new and also improve your brain's health. Make sure your health is in check and visit a medical professional today.
Get a quote for group health here!