International Dance Day

The benefits of dancing has been well established, helping to improve not only our physical but also mental wellbeing. And dance holds a special place in the heart of one Touchstone IAPT clinician in particular therefore to coincide with International Day of Dance, Carlyn B, has chosen to share with you the following reflection.

By Carlyn B

I have always loved dance from when I was a small child and personally it has always lifted my mood. I have done a variety of dance from contemporary dance to street dance.  A recent study in Germany looked at the benefits of dance versus going to the gym.  After 16 months they saw a 15% improvement in muscle strength for people attending dance classes but not in the gym group. It stated that dancing is more holistic and comprehensive; stimulating the muscles, using the brain and your balance.  So maybe hitting the dance class is a great idea.

In Improving Access to Psychological Therapies service (IAPT) we look at increasing activity and engagement in pleasurable activities to help build motivation and improve mood. Dance maybe one of those activities you may have stopped doing or are interested to get into.

There are so many different styles/genres of dance so hopefully there will be one that fits you best.

Below is list of different dance styles, have a look and see if any catch you eye and have a look if there is any in your local area to sign up to:

Style Genre Country Description
4 Step RocknRoll RocknRoll USA Feel the beat style RocknRoll
6 Step RocknRoll RocknRoll USA Tap and Step RocknRoll
Argentine Tango Cultural Argentine Dance of Argentine
Bachata Latin Dominican Republic Hips on Fire
Balboa Swing USA The shuffle dance
Ballet Classical Europe Graceful dance that tells a story or reflects a mood
Ballroom Cha Cha Ballroom Cuba Fun, flirty, playful Cuban dance
Ballroom Jive Ballroom England Variation of the Jitterbug, consisting of dance steps derived from country dancing
Ballroom Paso Doble Ballroom Spain (origin France) Marching to a Spanish bull fight
Ballroom Rumba Ballroom Cuba Slow and sensuous Latin American dance
Ballroom Samba Ballroom Brazil A lively Brazilian dance consisting of many jumps and turns
Belly Dancing Cultural Middle East Middle Eastern dance or Arabic dance
Bolero Latin Spain Slow-tempo Latin dance
Boogie Woogie Swing USA European East Coast Swing
Break Dance Modern USA Get on the Good Foot
Ceroc Swing Blend of Latin, Salsa and a two-step jive
Cha Cha Latin Cuba Vibrant, flamboyant and playful dance from Cuba
Charleston Swing USA A step and swing dance from the 1920s
Cuban Salsa Latin Cuba Type of round dancing of Salsa


If you want to see the full list go to


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