Young, Feeling Depressed? Try Dance, A New Pathway To Happiness

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February 8, 2022,

You don’t have to hire someone to teach you, but you could.

You don’t need a partner to participate but it is much better if you have one.

You probably haven’t considered it as therapy but professionals say it has myriads of physical, mental and emotional benefits.

That is why dancing can be so healing, inspiring and joyful.

If you haven’t already, you should try it some time.

Dance is a performing art form consisting of sequences of movement, either improvised or purposefully selected which can be aesthetic and often symbolic in value.

It can be categorized and described by its choreography, by its repertoire of movements, or by its historical period or place of origin.

An important distinction is to be drawn between the contexts of theatrical and participatory dance, although these two categories are not always completely separate; both may have special functions, whether social, ceremonial, competitive, erotic, martial, or sacred.

Even other forms of human movement are sometimes said to have a dance-like quality, including martial arts, gymnastics, cheerleading, figure skating, synchronized swimming, marching bands, and many other forms of athletics.

Let’s don’t leave out NFL end zone celebrations.

Then, there are those rituals of attraction.

Erotic? Isn’t that what dance clubs are for?

The legendary rock group Van Halen certainly had us thinking about it. Remember Dance The Night Away?

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Have you seen her
So fine and pretty
Fooled me with her style and ease
And I feel her from across the room
Yes, it’s love in the third degree

Ooh, baby baby
Won’t-cha turn your head my way
Ooh, baby baby
Ah come on! Take a chance you’re old enough to
Dance the night away

We absolutely loved that song. Back in the day.

Speaking of a little bit of history, References to dance can be found in very early recorded history; Greek dance (horos) is referred to by Plato, Aristotle, Plutarch and Lucian.

We hope they had music to enhance it. We sure love it to music.

Especially Electronica.

Electronic dance music is a broad range of percussive electronic music genres made largely for nightclubs, raves, and festivals.

It is generally produced for playback by DJs who create seamless selections of tracks, called a DJ mix, by segueing from one recording to another. EDM producers also perform their music live in a concert or festival setting in what is sometimes called a live PA.

If you can dance to it, you are either young or young at heart.

We absolutely love some of the tracks.

When you get older, you tend to dance in the dark, when no one is around but you know what? It is still therapeutic and fun.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, following the emergence of raving, pirate radio, Party Crews, underground festivals and an upsurge of interest in club culture, EDM achieved widespread mainstream popularity in Europe.

In the United States, however, acceptance of rave culture was not universal outside of regional scenes in New York City, Florida, the Midwest, and California.

Trance emerged from the rave scene in the United Kingdom in the late 1980s and developed further during the early 1990s in Germany before spreading throughout the rest of Europe, as a more melodic offshoot from techno and house.

So great to dance to.

And the benefits are endless. The mind masters at psychologytoday.com educate, “Studies have shown that dance, in particular, can decrease anxiety and boost mood more than other physical outlets. Researchers Leste and Rust (1990/1984) assigned patients with anxiety disorders to spend time in one of four settings: a modern-dance class, an exercise class, a music class, or a math class. Only the dance class significantly reduced anxiety.”

Makes perfect sense.

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That encourages us to try and understand why?

In another article the team at Psychology Today explains that as well.

They share, “The neuroscience of dance is a relatively new, but rapidly growing, field of research. In recent months, a variety of studies and an article-based dissertation on the neuroscience of dance have been published. These findings help us better understand why we dance and how dancing engages and changes the human brain.”

That appears to be an article on to itself.

Here, we just want to have some fun.

Let’s turn to film and Ballroom Dancing. Absolutely need a partner here.

Shall We Dance? is a 1996 Japanese romantic comedy-drama film directed by Masayuki Suo.

Its title refers to the song “Shall We Dance?” which comes from Rodgers and Hammerstein‘s The King and I.

Here is the storyline.

The film begins with a close-up of the inscription above the stage in the ballroom of the Blackpool Tower: “Bid me discourse, I will enchant thine ear”, from the poem Venus and Adonis by William Shakespeare. As the camera pans around the ballroom giving a view of the dancers, a voice-over explains that in Japan, ballroom dancing is treated with suspicion.

Successful salaryman Shohei Sugiyama (Kōji Yakusho) has a house in the suburbs, a devoted wife, Masako (Hideko Hara), and a teenage daughter, Chikage (Ayano Nakamura), and works as an accountant for a firm in Tokyo.

Despite these external signs of success, however, Shohei begins to feel as if his life has lost direction and meaning and falls into depression.

Living a life of quiet desperation as it were.

One night, while coming home on the Seibu Ikebukuro Line, he spots a beautiful woman with a melancholy expression looking out from a window in a dance studio: Mai Kishikawa (Tamiyo Kusakari), a well-known figure on the Western ballroom dance circuit.

Becoming infatuated with her, he decides to take lessons in order to get to know her better.

And he does.

As the film evolves, it is the dancing that truly changes his outlook on life and changes his philosophy on how to live it.

It energizes him with passion.

The timeless singer Rod Stewart taught us the importance of passion through song.

Somebody somewhere
In the heat of the night
Looking pretty dangerous
Running out of patience

Tonight in the city
You won’t find any pity
Hearts are being twisted
Another lover cheated, cheated

In the bars and the cafes, passion
In the streets and the alleys, passion
A lot of pretending, passion
Everybody searching, passion

Once in love you’re never out of danger
One hot night spent with a stranger
All you wanted was somebody to hold on to yeah
Passion, passion
Passion, passion

Yes indeed.

At home, Shohei’s wife tries to understand her husband’s new passion by asking him to teach her to dance as well.

Sounds wonderfully contagious.

If you are a little down in the dumps, stuck in a rut or living a life that you feel lacks a mission or passion, maybe you should try dancing.

It just may help you find a new vibrant path to satisfaction.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dance

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-athletes-way/201805/the-powerful-psychological-benefits-dance

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_dance_music

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-athletes-way/201805/the-powerful-psychological-benefits-dance

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/meaning-in-motion/201305/why-should-we-dance

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shall_We_Dance%3F_(1996_film)

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