Senior Moments: Dancing Fosters Control

Twirling across the dance floor at Fred Astaire Dance Studios can help seniors build confidence and regain a sense of control they may lose as they age.

Dealing with the aches and pains of aging can be difficult. As people grow older, they often lose a sense of control over their lives. Many seniors find the transition to a slower pace of life lonely and unproductive. There are 55.6 million adults over the age of 65 in the United States, and at least 27% of them live alone, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

A recent study conducted by researchers at North Carolina State University revealed more autonomy can help older adults feel younger. Physical activity and socialization are seniors’ best tools to retain independence and lead productive, fulfilling lives. Finding hobbies to help seniors stay active is important. At least 20% of the population aged 65 to 74 assessed their health as fair or poor, reports the HHS.

Ballroom dancing is a rewarding activity for seniors and can help improve cardiovascular health, muscle strength, and flexibility. It’s also a great activity to boost mental well-being. Many of our nation’s elderly spent their formative years dancing the night away at dance halls and supper clubs. Spending time brushing up on their dance moves will bring back fond memories and provide a sense of accomplishment. Ballroom dancing can help increase focus and discipline. It allows students to control negative emotions, ignore distractions, and instill drive.


Ballroom Dancing Gives Purpose


The teaching methods at Fred Astaire Dance Studios locations will help seniors improve their confidence in a fun, social setting. Fred Astaire’s style of dancing inspired our curriculum. It covers the full range of American, Latin-American, and International Style forms of ballroom dancing, and we take a three-tiered approach to learning, including regularly scheduled private lessons, group classes, and practice parties.

The Fred Astaire Trophy System allows dancers to track their progress as they learn new moves. It starts with our Beginner and Social Foundation Programs, which teach new students the step patterns and techniques to move comfortably around the dance floor.


Get Inspired!


Inspire your beloved senior to attend dance lessons by having a classic movie night. There are many movies about the time-honored tradition of ballroom dancing. The first two films feature our namesake and co-founder, Fred Astaire.

Take a look at this clip from “The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle.” The biographical musical comedy debuted in 1939 and tells the story of the ballroom dancing duo widely recognized for inventing the one-step and turkey trot.

In “The Royal Wedding,” a brother and sister travel to London to dance at the wedding of Queen Elizabeth, and during the festivities, they both find love. Fred Astaire’s character charms a fellow dancer, and the character played by Jane Powell falls head over heels for a poor nobleman.

If your senior prefers nonfiction, get an inside look at a children’s dance competition held annually in New York City in “Mad Hot Ballroom.” The documentary follows fifth graders from a variety of different neighborhoods as they participate in an annual ballroom dancing competition.


Give the Gift of Dance


Consider helping a senior in your life build their confidence and have fun by gifting them ballroom dance lessons. Contact your lo