Dance – an art and a sport
(Image is designed by the student of Hong Kong Design Institute)
Dancing is more than an art. It is also a sport which helps to maintain health, to boost immunity, and to improve mental wellness by releasing emotions.
An accumulation of at least 30 minutes of dance (at least 10 minutes per session) every day persistently can bring you the following benefits:
- Improving your cardiopulmonary functions and blood circulation;
- Enhancing the mobility and flexibility of joints to lower the risk of injuries and falls;
- Strengthening your muscles and reducing the risk of osteoporosis;
- Reducing the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke and diabetes mellitus as well as preventing some types of cancer (e.g. colorectal cancer);
- Relieving stress, boosting confidence and improving mental health;
- To broaden social circle; and
- To burn calories to help you maintain a healthy body weight.
There are many types of dance, each with its own characteristics, some of which are as follows:
In the old days, Social dance was a classy social and recreational activity that catered for minority interests. With growing popularity, it has been taken up by people from all walks of life. Today, social dance is not only a kind of art performance, but also a competitive event in the sports arena.
Only becoming popular in Hong Kong in the mid-70s, modern dance has developed rapidly since then. With different schools and distinctive styles, it has multiple expression techniques that stress the uniqueness and creativity of the dancers.
Jazz dance with strong beats and diverse steps, is very popular among young people. Since it has fewer rules as compared with social dance, dancers can express themselves freely through dancing.
Chinese dance is divided into classical dance and ethnic dance, reflecting Chinese cultural characteristics and traditional customs of ethnic groups. Rich in content and varied in forms, it enables dancers to understand more about the culture and arts of our country through dancing.
Folk dance is a very common form of entertainment in festive celebrations and gatherings. Though easy to learn, its clear rhythm calls for co-ordination and co-operation among dancers. Cultural characteristics of different places can also be displayed. It is such a dance suitable for all.
Dance tailor-made for children can be called children dance. It adopts basic techniques of various types of dance (such as ballet, jazz dance and folk dance). Light and lively in mood, it helps children to develop an interest in dancing.
Originated in the United States, street dance is an umbrella term which includes a fusion of many dance styles associated with different street cultures or music styles. Hip-Hop and break dance are the two most common types of street dance. The common characteristic of street dance is strong swinging movements, a variety of improvised moves and that there are no rules on what you wear. The best aspect of street dance is its rich vibrancy and passion. Regular practice can improve your whole body co-ordination.
Line dance is a type of Contredanse and is widely popular across the world. It has its origins in the western United States at the time when disco was dominating the dancefloors. It is made up of simple dance moves and does not require a partner. The dancers stand in lines and dance the same steps with the sound of cheerful music and repeated turns. In addition to improving cardiopulmonary functions, joint mobility and hand and foot coordination, line dance can also improve memory and sense of direction.
Group dance includes various types of dance from line dance to jazz dance, Chinese dance, folk dance, social dance and Latin dance, etc. A partner is not required for these dances. Props such as fan, sleeve, scarf, tambourine and bamboo clapper are normally used by dancer to move with pleasant music.
If you are interested in dance, please visit the website of Hong Kong DanceSport Assciation or Hong Kong Dance Federation for further information. You may also check out the activities about dance published on our website.