Active for Life: Dance

It’s hard to beat dance when it comes to physical literacy and helping kids to develop movement competency, body awareness, agility, balance, and coordination.

According to the Canadian Youth Sports Report (2014), there were 625,500 Canadian children and youth ages 3-17 participating in organized dance as of December 2013. That’s more than hockey, and almost as much as soccer! Meanwhile, there were over 1 million Canadian adults either taking dance classes or performing dance in their communities as of 2004 (Canada Council for the Arts).

All forms of dance play an important role in developing physical literacy. Check out these articles and activities to learn more:

Dance and physical literacy: The link between rhythm and movement

Dance is an important tool in developing physical literacy because different dance styles promote a wide range of fundamental movement skills and movement sequencing that provide the foundation of physical literacy and lifelong physical activity.

Program from Canada’s National Ballet School promotes dance across Canada

Co-developed by Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet School and Physical and Health Education Canada, Sharing Dance inspires every Canadian to dance for a healthier body and mind through free programs suitable for all ages.

Sharing Dance is making Canada happy, one step at a time

On May 24, 2015, Sharing Dance got Canadians up and dancing together. The initiative, from Canada’s National Ballet School, is an annual celebration of dance.

Misty Copeland’s unlikely success redefines ballet

She didn’t start ballet until she was 13. Conventional wisdom said it was too late for her to begin, and her body was all wrong. Now she’s principal dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre company in New York.

Ballet and dance helped Sarah Reid become a better skeleton racer

When it comes to sporting activities, Sarah Reid is a true renaissance woman. From participating in ballet and dance in her childhood, to snowboarding, jazz dancing, and mixed martial arts as an adult, she credits her success at skeleton to her multi-sport lifestyle.

This father shows there are many ways to be active with your child

“Contact improvisation” develops and explores many movement skills in a non-competitive, exploratory, and joyful way.

Dance training helped Canadian snowboarder Spencer O’Brien learn body awareness

Spencer O’Brien studied ballet, tap, jazz, and hip-hop dancing, and says she is still influenced by what she learned during those years of dance.


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