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Benefits of Dance for Children

Updated on August 2, 2013

Children love to Dance

Dance for All

Dancing for children is a great way of keeping fit and allows children to find and improve new skills. Team sports and athletics are great, but are not for every child, particularly younger ones; dance for kids gives children the opportunity to develop many life skills which they can apply as they grow and develop .It may come as a surprise to discover just how valuable an early dance education can be to aspects of a child's life.Almost all children enjoy dancing regardless of ethnicity or culture.

Physical Health

Increasing obesity in children is a concern for all of us and finding ways to keep our kids active can be a challenge.

Dancing is highly physical, will increase stamina, strength and flexibility, improve co-ordination and balance, correct poor posture and increase cardiovascular health. Overall health is also improved, as children who exercise benefit from deeper and more restful sleep and improved appetite.

Children who learn to enjoy a physical activity have a far better chance of continuing as an adult.

Social Skills

Dancing is highly social and children learn new communications skills, how to trust, cooperate and work as part of a team without having to compete with their peers.

If you have a shy child, dance can be a good way of allowing her to interact with other children and improve her social confidence. Most dance schools give children regular opportunities to perform in shows; a great way to overcome social anxiety and to become comfortable appearing before an audience. Many of us as adults feel nervous performing in front of a large group, but many work situations demand that we do. Children can learn this a very important life skill which will benefit them within their adult career.. Children who dance are given the opportunity to deepen and enhance their self-esteem; through hard work and performance children can feel adept, capable and able- a deeply satisfying and nurturing process. This in turn serves to further motivate a child to strive further. Children often find dance a great emotional release, those suffering from stress or other challenges can find ease in the creative expression of dance. As kids develop a greater sense of their physicality, they start to feel more comfortable in their own skin, and develop a positive attitude towards their own bodies

Academic Benefits

Exam time at dance school can be nerve wracking. For disciplines such as ballet, tap or modern dance, children are required to work through a syllabus and practice hard for many months to achieve certain standards and demonstrate their skill to the examiner.

Exam days can be a testing time. Uniforms are preened to the highest standard, and pre exam nerves can feel like a lot of pressure, especially for younger children. Dance requires discipline and focus.Examiners tend to be very encouraging towards young students, and passing through the grades is a deeply gratifying thing for young dancers, when the results of hard work are recognized by the establishment.

Experiencing the survivability of exams and the elation of achievement because of hard work is excellent preparation for academic examinations as they progress through school.

A dance class improves a child's listening ability, memory/ spatial awareness, and awareness of others within a group. Dancing uses both sides of the brain simultaneously in a coordinated manner, one half is controlling the physicality and movement, the other the creative and artistic expression.

There is no doubt that dance is a very enhancing thing for a child’s creative, musical and artistic development, but studies have shown that children who dance score higher in mathematical and scientific studies too.

Begin at Home

Dancing can begin very early at home. Babies often love music and even before they can walk will delight at being bounced, whirled and jiggled gently in time to music. As soon as they can stand, babies love swaying and stamping in time to music.

You may be lucky enough to live near a toddler dance class, usually with parents in tow, toddlers are given the opportunity to move in time to a variety of different types of music, sometimes with rattles, bells or scarves.

By the time a toddler is three he or she can start a ballet class. Elementary ballet will focus on fun, listening to a teacher's direction responding, and of course the chance to wear pretty clothes.

As a child grows and develops she may be offered the opportunity to try different styles of dance, usually modern, jazz or tap.

Ballet will often remain the backbone of study for many pupils who want to take dance seriously, as the discipline learned from ballet is very helpful in developing good technique in other dance styles.Tap dance in enormous fun, originating Vaudeville circuit, there is nothing quite so appealing to a 7 year old as the that clickety clack tap on the floor. Once a child learns the shuffle they are off!

Street dance has become popular over the years, with children of both sexes, and is perhaps one of the most well-loved dancing styles with boys of all ages, although popular with girls too. Some dance schools choose to have a boys only street dance, some lads are more comfortable than in mixed groups.Hip Hop, although popular, some moves and music can be quite sexually explicit. Much of the music has explicit sexual references in the lyrics, and for this reason many schools choose not to teach it to children, preferring street dance instead.

Dance has so much to offer children. A dance class is a great leveler- kids from all walks of life and all academic abilities perform on a level playing field. Dance was one of the earliest methods of artistic expression and continues to provide a valuable outlet and nurturing experience for all.

Children's Ballet Class


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    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Certainly a lot of benefits are there to find with dancing.

    • Silver Fish profile imageAUTHOR

      Silver Fish 

      5 years ago from Edinburgh Scotland

      Thanks Mama Kim, such kind comments.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile image

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Your very first statement "children love to dance" is so true and what better way to have fun, stay fit, and improve brain function. Great hub, voting up and awesome!

    • NicoleToneyNelson profile image

      Nicole Toney Nelson 

      6 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      Agree! Another great article.

    • Silver Fish profile imageAUTHOR

      Silver Fish 

      6 years ago from Edinburgh Scotland

      Thanks for your comments Nell.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      6 years ago from England

      Hi, Oh this brought back memories! lol! I grew up loving ballet so much, so my mum sent me to dance school, we covered ballet modern tap and so on, I should have stayed on, many of my friends went on to be tv dancers, so your hub is great, and is so true. dance is great for kids, not only on a confidence scale but on so many levels, wonderful, nell

    • Silver Fish profile imageAUTHOR

      Silver Fish 

      6 years ago from Edinburgh Scotland

      Thanks Kl1313, I am glad you enjoyed my article.

    • Kl1313 profile image

      Krissy Livingston 

      6 years ago from New York

      Great article! I have been a dancer all my life. Danced professionally & now I teach jazz & ballet. Everything you have written is so true! Dance is a wonderful thing for children (& adults) to get involved in. Most of our students take multiple classes while maintaining straight A's. It teaches them discipline, origination, & how to prioritize! I now have 2 daughters - ages 4 & 2 - I hope they will continue with dance from now thru their adult life!

    • Silver Fish profile imageAUTHOR

      Silver Fish 

      6 years ago from Edinburgh Scotland

      Thanks Giblingirl. I was never lucky enough to attend classes but my teenage daughter does and I am so pleased that we discovered the joys that dance can bring.

    • GiblinGirl profile image


      6 years ago from New Jersey

      Great article. I love dancing and definitely think it is a great activity for kids to participate in. I especially agree that it can help with social skills and with "performing" whether it's on stage or in a classroom or later in life in the office.


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