The term dance workout conjures up different images for different people - but the big question for many people is, will a dance workout really help me to get in shape?
The answer is that a dance workout has to adhere to the basic principles of exercise and activity. These include:
- Progressive overload
Let's look at what these mean in practice:
- Intensity: Intensity refers to how hard you are working when you exercise. Dance workouts are a form of cardiovascular exercise, so in this case intensity is measured in terms of percentage of maximal heart rate that the workout produces. If it really gets your heart beating, it's doing some good.
- Duration: How long does it last? 20 minutes is usually accepted as the minimum to have any positive effects, but longer periods are obviously more effective.
- Frequency: How often do you it? Anything done just once a week will have limited effects. In order to see good progress from your exercise, you need at least three sessions per week of the various things you do.
- Progressive overload: Does your exercise, whatever it is, gradually get more difficult? The principle of progressive overload is one of the keys of any type of exercise - quite simply, do you gradually do harder and harder things that challenge your body to grow and develop?
- Variety: Finally, it is important to consider variety. Too much of anything, from football to salsa, can lead to boredom, even injury. Thus whatever you do for exercise should have enough variety to challenge your body and keep you interested.
If an exercise program meets these criteria, no matter what it is, it is going to help you get in shape.