Did you know Australian kids love to dance! More Australian children participate in dance classes per week than in any team sport. And the good news: it’s good for them. 

Here are the top five reasons why dance has a positive impact on children.

1. It promotes social interaction and fosters relationships

Dance classes pulls kids out of the bubble of screen-time and brings them face to face with each other. Learning choreography together requires patience and partnership, and teaches the value of working as a team. Children can develop new and lasting friendships and build trust and openness with others. Socialisation can help kids break out of their shell and improves their self-esteem and communication skills. Dance friends are forever friends!

2. It improves physical health 

Dance is a firm foundation for health in later life. Dancing can increase a child’s flexibility, physical strength and stamina, and instilling a love of dance from a young age can help motivate kids to stay active as they grow up. Learning to dance can improve posture, balance, coordination and overall cardiovascular health. When a child is more physically active, they are more likely to participate in sports and other school activities, and less likely to put on unhealthy weight. Dance also offers a positive physical outlet for kids with boundless energy who need to release pent-up excitement.

3. It teaches discipline and focus 

Eyes on the prize! As children practise for end-of-year concerts, they learn about perseverance and hard work. Dance is the ideal creative outlet in that it balances freedom of movement with instruction and structure. During dance classes, teachers inspire kids to try new things while promoting self-motivation and self-discipline. 

4. It nurtures confidence and boosts self-assurance

Find your light … As children begin to understand the movements and postures required in dance, they gain a better sense of their bodies and themselves. As they become more comfortable in their own skin, their confidence and self-esteem also significantly improve. Dance lessons can encourage children towards more positive attitudes and help them explore their own self-expression.

5. It sparks creativity

Dance happens outside the box. It encourages kids to open their imaginations, and to explore the creative worlds inside them. Because dance incorporates many other art forms, it may also lead to the discovery of other creative outlets such as art, music or drama. Early childhood is the best time to foster creativity, and creative problem solving will serve your child for life, whatever field they pursue.

Looking for a way to inspire your child to dance? The Australian Ballet’s Storytime series is designed especially for kids aged 3 and up. At under an hour, these interactive, narrative versions of the great classics are the perfect introduction to the magic of dance. Storytime: The Nutcracker will be running in Melbourne and Sydney these summer holidays. 

Written by Rose Mulready and Keshia Contini
The Australian Ballet