Swing of Things: Dance Extra COVID-19 Pounds Away

dancing etiquette

Fred Astaire Dance Studios recommends getting in the swing of things this fall by taking control of your health and physical fitness. Kick up your heels on the dance floor and lose those extra pounds you gained during COVID-19 quarantine.


As the leaves change color and cooler temperatures become the norm, the fall season is typically a time when people start to spend long stretches of time at home in cozy sweaters drinking mugs of warm apple cider. The outbreak of COVID-19 this spring sent many people into winter hibernation mode earlier than expected. Bingeing Netflix shows, baking sourdough bread and turning every day into Friday night happy hour prompted many people to pack on the extra pounds. Fred Astaire Dance Studios encourages people to take advantage of the transformative power of dance this fall to lose weight and have fun.


Health Benefits of Dance

Dancing is a proven method for people of all ages and stages of their life to improve both their physical and mental health. Here are some of the ways hitting the dance floor can help you lose those extra COVID-19 pounds.


Burn Fat and Lose Weight. Ballroom dancing is a low-impact aerobic exercise that can help burn fat and boost your metabolism. Performing high energy dances, like the salsa, Charleston and jive, can burn up to nearly 300 calories in 30 minutes, according to doctors at Harvard Medical School. If you ate too many appetizers last week celebrating the debut of professional football, chasing your tortilla chip binge with some ballroom dancing may be the answer. Fast dances are great options to get your heart pumping.


Increase Flexibility. Ballroom dance classes at Fred Astaire Dance Studios all begin with a stretching routine to get you ready to dance and prevent injury. Over time, dancing will help increase your flexibility and improve your range of motion. It can also help improve core strength and balance. Increased flexibility will make you a better dancer as well as decrease joint pain and muscle soreness after exercise. 


Increase Muscle Strength and Endurance. Ballroom dances like the foxtrot, waltz, tango and rhumba are slower dances people might not think to turn to when trying to get in shape. While you might not break a sweat, these slower dances incorporate a lot of lunges, which help tone your leg muscles. The slower dances are a good place for ballroom dance beginners to get started as they are fairly easy to master. Dances with quick steps, lifts, twists and turns, will help you develop more muscle strength in your arms, legs and core. Ballroom dancing helps people slowly improve their endurance as they master dances and try options with harder steps.


Boost Brainpower. Dancing is an effective, all-natural method to improve your mental health, which is especially important as the pandemic continues to challenge people across the globe. During late June, 40 percent of U.S. adults reported struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control. With the end of the pandemic still not in sight and turbulent current events, dancing can help keep worries at bay. Dancing has been proven to boost memory in the elderly, decrease depression and reduce stress.


If you need a little more inspiration to get up off the couch and get moving, check out these clips of couples getting their heart rates up by performing high energy dances.


Ricardo Vega and Karen Forcano perform the salsa at the World Salsa Summit for an enthusiastic audience.



Sophie Ellis-Bextor and her partner get their feet moving, performing the Charleston to “Rock It For Me,” on “Strictly Come Dancing,” a British ballroom dancing program.



Lindsey Stirling and Mark Ballas start the day dancing in this performance on the popular dance competition show, “Dancing With the Stars.” The cute couple hop out of bed and dance the jive to “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” by Wham! 



If you’re ready to give ballroom dancing a whirl, contact your local Fred Astaire Dance Studios to schedule a lesson or visit the dance chain’s Online Lesson Platform to stream a dance class in your living room.