The focus on personal expression is undeniably one of the most beautiful aspects of a dance Polynesian routine. It is said that this dance is artistry, discipline, pageantry, history, passion, culture and history all in one. Aspiring dancers are required to be patient and not worry too much about the counts or steps but focus more on the feeling expressed in the movements.
If dance Polynesian sounds fun and interesting to you, then you might want to consider taking a class. To help you decide if this is a good idea for you or not, here are some benefits you can expect from it.
One great thing about Polynesian dance is that everyone can try it. If you can move, even if it's only your upper body, then you can dance. This equaliser is what makes dance so popular with people who typically shy away from other forms of exercise.
Boosts cognitive performance
Another good reason to try Polynesian dance is that it can help maintain and enhance your ability to think as you get older. According to studies, scientists have found that areas of the brain that control memory and skills, such as planning and organising, can improve with exercise like dancing. Plus, unlike other forms of exercise, dance has the additional benefits of improving balance through rhythm and music.
Challenges your brain
Challenging your brain is also one of the things Polynesian dance can do for you. The brainpower you need to access for dance, specifically, requires you to focus on both the constant changing of movement and recalling moves and patterns. This is an excellent form of mental exercise for your mind, regardless of your age.
Polynesian dance is also helpful in boosting your memory. Memorising the steps is only part of the dance, as you can also learn the meanings of the movement when studying the dance, as well as the stories, myths and legends behind it.
Can be a social activity
While you may think that dancing when no one is around is better, there's actually something amazing about dancing with other people. When you join the Polynesian dancing class with friends, your kids or your grandkids, being around other people while dancing is good for your social and emotional health.
Improves physical health
Polynesian dance provides physical toning, targeting the hips, stomach, thighs, calves and arms. This dance can be a good alternative to cardiovascular and low-impact exercise, strengthening your posture and back muscles.
Serves as a mental escape
Almost everyone is in need of a "mental break" from time to time. Polynesian dancing can offer the escape your brain needs. It is actually a great activity instead of just staying at home and doing nothing. Not unlike a runner's high, the rhythmic movement has been shown to trigger the release of endorphins, which can boost your mood.
As much of a mental exercise as a physical one, Polynesian dancing keeps the mind sharp. One study found that dancing can actually help in boosting cognitive flexibility, which is known to decline as you get older.
Improve balance and coordination
The ageing population is at high risk for falls, and Polynesian dance can be beneficial in reducing this particular risk because the dance is just a series of balance tests. Techniques taught in Polynesian dance classes increase body awareness and encourage low-impact landings. These are not just beneficial for dancers but also for adults worried about getting injured, athletes who are into impact sports, and kids developing motor skills.
Good for the spiritual being
Many of the Hawaiian songs are about nature; the waves, wind, flower, rain, clouds, etc. With this being said, Polynesian dancing can help ease your stress and worries. Furthermore, interpreting and visualising the words with movements can somewhat give you a unique spiritual experience, connect you to nature and even transport you to the Islands. You can also experience the "Spirit of Aloha" by building lifelong friends. In a way, the people you meet while studying Polynesian dance can become your "Hula Sisters, Brothers, and Ohana".
Indeed, dance Polynesian is not just for those who want to have fun but also for people who want to learn the beauty of cultural storytelling through movements. So in case you are now interested in studying this artistic dance, then make sure you take a lesson from a professional instructor only. Let those movements tell stories of grace, and leave the audiences in awe by learning Polynesian dance.