Modern aerobic fitness exploits a great deal of dance movements and music which makes it fun and enjoyable. This restructuring of aerobic fitness has led to the adoption new terms like dance fitness and dance cardio.
The terms “dance cardio,’’ “aerobic dance’’ and “dance fitness,’’ are used interchangeably to refer to dance-related workouts that are meant to boost your fitness. As the name suggests, dance cardio workouts have immense benefits on your cardiovascular system.
Want more insights on dance cardio? Then a beginner’s guide to dance cardio will be helpful.
Here is what you should know.
Related: Best Shoes for Cardio Dance
Types of Cardio Dance
Dance cardio is good substitute to cross training or running. It helps tone your entire body including your heart and lungs. You also get to burn calories, improve balance, reduce stress and reduce the risk of old-age illnesses such as dementia.
So, here are the most common cardio dance workouts to get you started.
Definitely Zumba is the most popular form of cardio dance in the world. Originating from Colombia in the early 90s, Zumba is a combination of enjoyable dance moves and synchronized music especially Latin and hip hop tunes.
Zumba involves high energy body workouts which are beneficial to your entire body including your heart and brain. Backed by the music, the dance moves bring about a club-like surrounding which makes the whole experience enjoyable and less monotonous.
Normally, Zumba classes are run licensed instructors and a typical session may last about one hour. Being a total-body workout, Zumba workouts will burn more calories compared to some workouts like kickboxing, power yoga, step aerobics, and so on.
In addition, Zumba is associated with reduced instances of high blood pressure, heart diseases and bad cholesterol.
Zumba is recommended to people of all ages as long as they don’t have medical conditions which limit body movements. In fact it’s a safe way elderly people to remain healthy and active.
Prior dancing skills aren’t a must for you to join Zumba classes. The beats help in coordination and you can easily pick the dance moves within a short period. The good thing is that the classes begin with easy to pick moves and advance to more challenging moves.
Created in 1969, Jazzercise continues to receive wide admiration as one of the most effective full-body workout for a healthy life. Similar to Zumba, Jazzercise involves high energy and fast-paced dance workouts which are backed by musical rythms.
The most significant difference between Jazzercise and Zumba that their individual dance moves are influenced by different music genres. Zumba is largely influenced by Latin music while Jazzercise mainly gets its influence from Jazz and pop.
A typical Jazzercise class may involve either low or high intensity cardio dance workouts depending on level of training. The ultimate goal is to give you sufficient resistance to help you tone muscles, build strength and burn calories.
Coping up with Jazzercise as a beginner isn’t hard. With the guide of a professional instructor, it’s quite easy to follow and coordinate the moves as you dance to the music rhythm.
3. Ballroom Dancing
Ballroom dancing refers to a myriad of recreational dances which are performed with a partner. Different styles of ballroom dancing have emerged and have been widely accepted and performed in different parts of the world.
Although there’re many styles of ballroom dancing, they are basically classified into two: Latin and standard ballroom dancing. They share a lot in common but differ on the dress code, techniques and rhythm.
Though not very strenuous, ballroom dancing will help you tone muscles, burn calories and enhance joint flexibility.
Examples of ballroom dances include waltz, tango, quickstep, Spanish bolero, pasodoble, samba, rhumba, mambo among others.
4. Belly Dancing
This traditional dancing style has its origin traced in Egypt and has existed for several decades. In its principles, Belly dancing entails moves which are good for toning your thighs, arms, abs, buns and hips. That’s why it’s presently categorized as a cardio dance and used in fitness lessons.
Benefits of Cardio Dance
Also known aerobic dance, cardio dance engages most of your body muscles including legs, arms and hips. Movements in these body appendages results in high oxygen consumption which in turn causes faster breathing and heart rate.
So, you should expect to reap numerous health benefits when participating in cardio dance. Below is a summary of the benefits of cardio dance.
1. Burns Calories
Fast-paced and high energy cardio dances such as Zumba and Jazzercise are associated with enhanced cardiovascular activity. They result in increased heart rate and faster breathing which in turn aids in burning body fats or calories.
2. Muscle Toning
Cardio dance gives you an effective way of toning your muscles. Your glutes and legs muscles are in constant motion during cardio dance which makes them more relaxed and flexible. The benefit of muscle toning is that they help in improving your posture.
Cardio dance also workouts out your upper body muscles including the arms and abdomen and back.
3. Mood Boosting
Backed by the beats of music, cardio dance moves will get you in high and energetic spirit which boost your mood. That’s why dance is recommended a remedy for stress, depression, anxiety and other related ailments.
4. Boosts Your Brain
Music is the regarded as the workout or exercise of the brain. As you enjoy the music during cardio dance, your brain is activated through the neurons which enhances your ability to remember. That’s why presently dance is being incorporated in the treatments for the Parkinson’s disease.
Research has also show reduced instances of dementia in adults who are active in dance-related workouts.
5. Works Out Your Full Body
Cardio dance offers you an opportunity to engage a wide range of muscle which is not usually the case activities such as running. Thus, runners can use cardio dance as a form of cross training to achieve full-body fitness.
Notably, cardio dance naturally engages your legs, abs, glutes and arms which in turn helps in strengthening your core. Not only is the core responsible for functional movements but it also helps in maintaining stability, posture and balance.
6. Enhances Coordination and Balance
Being able to keep up with the fast-paced and rhythmic cardio moves eventually results in better coordination and stability in your everyday undertakings. In fact it helps elderly people overcome common challenges such standing upright and walking
This cardio dance for beginners guide intends to give you insights regarding the types and benefits of cardio dance. Cardio dance offers you a full-body fitness unlike running and cross training.
If you’re a running enthusiast, you can consider some cardio dance classes to improve your balance and stability. Plus it helps you break the monotony of running all the time.