Yes – Dancing Does Make You Happyadmin
A number of studies have been done throughout the years investigating the impact dance can have on an individual’s attitude. As far back as 2013, psychologists at the University of Örebro observed that a group of teenagers who suffered from anxiety, depression and stress, as well as psychosomatic symptoms such as neck and back pain. Half were asked to attend two dance classes a week, the other half continued with their daily routines. After two years, the researchers found that those who continued to attend dance classes reported improvement of their psychosomatic symptoms, and also reported feeling happier.
Another study out of the University of Derby observed that individuals who suffered from depression that received salsa lessons over a period of nine weeks. After just four weeks, participants reported improvements and after finishing the course claimed “they had fewer negative thoughts, better concentration and a greater sense of peace and tranquility,” according to Psychology Spot.
Adults aren’t the only ones who benefit from dance. Psychologists at the University of New York observed similar benefits in children. A team of researchers worked with 120 children, ages 2-5, who were exposed to different types of sound stimuli. They observed that those children who moved along to rhythmic sound stimuli showed more positive emotions and appeared happier, so they concluded that we not only have a propensity to move to the beat of music, but dancing also improves our mood.
But why does music make us feel this way? According to Psychology Spot, when we dance our brain releases endorphins, which create a feeling of comfort, relaxation, fun and power. This, coupled with the social aspect often associated with dancing, and the muscle relaxation that occurs when we dance, ultimately lead to an increased level of happiness.