Scottish Country Dance: Benefits to Functional Ability in Older Women

Susan Dewhurst, Norah Nelson, Paul K. Dougall, Theodoros M. Bampouras
2014 Journal of Aging and Physical Activity  
The effects of long-term participation in Scottish country dance on body composition, functional ability, and balance in healthy older females were examined. Participants were grouped into dancers and physically active nondancers (ages 60-70 and 70-80 for both groups). Physical activity, body composition (body-mass index, skinfold thickness, waist-to-hip ratio), functional ability (6-min walk distance, 6-m walk time, 8-ft up-andgo time, lower body flexibility, shoulder flexibility), and static
more » ... alance were measured. Younger dancers and physically active nondancers had similar 6-min walk distance, 6-m walk time, and 8-ft up-and-go time results; however, while older dancers performed similarly to younger dancers, older physically active nondancers performed poorer than their younger counterparts (p < .05). Body composition and static balance were the same for all groups. Regular physical activity can maintain body composition and postural stability with advancing age; however, Scottish country dance can delay the effects of aging on locomotion-related functional abilities.
doi:10.1123/japa.2012-0234 pmid:23538484 fatcat:e4fm5z4gcbbfvn3aplzvkemcne