Residents at West Eaton have thoroughly enjoyed their Dance Magic Dance sessions with Faye O’Connor from Xpress-yourself.
Xpress-yourself was set up in 2013 and specialises in community dance workshops. Faye’s ethos is that “dance has no age limit” and her funded Dance Magic Dance sessions were offered to a number of nursing homes.
Our activities coordinator, Rita Graham, snapped up the opportunity of bringing dance to our residents. Rita and Faye worked together to deliver the classes, which have delighted everyone involved.
We have attached a testimonial here Rita Graham Testimonial
The benefit of Dance Magic Dance
Faye’s classes could be standing or seated so everyone got involved. She used music from around the world and different eras to stir memories and encouraged movement with props, such as scarfs.
She has a person centred approach to dance and allowed our residents to express themselves freely through dance, in any way they chose.
You can read more about the workshops and Xpress-yourself here http://www.fayeoconnordance.com/danceworkshopscarehomes
Dancing away dementia
Dance has a huge number of health benefits; from physical exercise in maintaining strength and agility, to reducing stress and releasing serotonin that increases well-being.
There have been a number of studies into the benefits of dance in reducing the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease.One study by The Alzheimer’s Project makes very interesting reading. It looked at a range of activities and assessed which ones warded off dementia. Cycling, swimming and golf had a 0% reduced risk. Reading a 35% reduced risk. But dancing gave a 76% reduced risk of dementia.
You can read the study here: http://thealzheimersproject.org/2014/12/ballroom-dancing-and-alzheimers-can-dancing-make-you-smarter/
Dancing, particularly freestyle dance, needs rapid fire decisions of the brain. This is different to swimming, golf or cycling which are activities involving rote memory.
This rapid fire decision making, forces the brain to regularly rewire its neural pathways. This gives a greater cognitive reserve and an increased complexity of neural synapses. Choreographed dancing did not have this benefit. It has to be freestyle, which is why Xpress-yourself and Dance Magic Dance ideally suited our residents.
Thank you Faye
Faye is now going on maternity leave and everyone at West Eaton wishes her all the very best! We will miss her fun and laughter.
Thank you Faye for bringing your fabulous dance sessions to our home.