Why dancing could be a promising candidate to counteract age-related decline

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Dancing Can Reverse the Signs of Aging in the Brain

Why dancing could be a promising candidate to counteract age-related decline

Summary: Numerous recent studies have shown a link between exercise and improved cognitive performance in older people. A new study reveals dancing may have the most profound effect on cognitive health.

Source: Frontiers.

A comparison of 2 different fitness routines shows that both can have an anti-aging effect on the brain in the elderly, but only dancing gives rise to a measurable difference in behavior.

As we grow older we suffer a decline in mental and physical fitness, which can be made worse by conditions Alzheimer’s disease. A new study, published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, shows that older people who routinely partake in physical exercise can reverse the signs of aging in the brain, and dancing has the most profound effect.

“Exercise has the beneficial effect of slowing down or even counteracting age-related decline in mental and physical capacity,” says Dr Kathrin Rehfeld, lead author of the study, based at the German center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, Magdeburg, Germany.

“In this study, we show that two different types of physical exercise (dancing and endurance training) both increase the area of the brain that declines with age.

In comparison, it was only dancing that lead to noticeable behavioral changes in terms of improved balance.”

Elderly volunteers, with an average age of 68, were recruited to the study and assigned either an eighteen-month weekly course of learning dance routines, or endurance and flexibility training.

Both groups showed an increase in the hippocampus region of the brain. This is important because this area can be prone to age-related decline and is affected by diseases Alzheimer’s.

It also plays a key role in memory and learning, as well as keeping one’s balance.

While previous research has shown that physical exercise can combat age-related brain decline, it is not known if one type of exercise can be better than another.

To assess this, the exercise routines given to the volunteers differed.

The traditional fitness training program conducted mainly repetitive exercises, such as cycling or Nordic walking, but the dance group were challenged with something new each week.

Dr Rehfeld explains, “We tried to provide our seniors in the dance group with constantly changing dance routines of different genres (Jazz, Square, Latin-American and Line Dance).

Steps, arm-patterns, formations, speed and rhythms were changed every second week to keep them in a constant learning process.

The most challenging aspect for them was to recall the routines under the pressure of time and without any cues from the instructor.”

Elderly volunteers, with an average age of 68, were recruited to the study and assigned either an eighteen-month weekly course of learning dance routines, or endurance and flexibility training.

NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain.

These extra challenges are thought to account for the noticeable difference in balance displayed by those participants in dancing group. Dr Rehfeld and her colleagues are building on this research to trial new fitness programs that have the potential of maximizing anti-aging effects on the brain.

“Right now, we are evaluating a new system called “Jymmin” (jamming and gymnastic). This is a sensor-based system which generates sounds (melodies, rhythm) physical activity. We know that dementia patients react strongly when listening to music. We want to combine the promising aspects of physical activity and active music making in a feasibility study with dementia patients.”

Dr Rehfeld concludes with advice that could get us up our seats and dancing to our favorite beat.

“I believe that everybody would to live an independent and healthy life, for as long as possible. Physical activity is one of the lifestyle factors that can contribute to this, counteracting several risk factors and slowing down age-related decline. I think dancing is a powerful tool to set new challenges for body and mind, especially in older age.”

This study falls into a broader collection of research investigating the cognitive and neural effects of physical and cognitive activity across the lifespan.

About this neuroscience research article

Source: Melissa Cochrane – Frontiers
Image Source: NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain.

Original Research: Full open access research for “Dancing or Fitness Sport? The Effects of Two Training Programs on Hippocampal Plasticity and Balance Abilities in Healthy Seniors” by Kathrin Rehfeld, Patrick Müller, Norman Aye, Marlen Schmicker, Milos Dordevic, Jörn Kaufmann, Anita Hökelmann and Notger G. Müller1, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. Published online June 15 2017 doi:10.3389/fnhum.2017.00305

Cite This NeuroscienceNews.com Article

Frontiers “Dancing Can Reverse the Signs of Aging in the Brain.” NeuroscienceNews. NeuroscienceNews, 25 August 2017.
.

Frontiers (2017, August 25). Dancing Can Reverse the Signs of Aging in the Brain. NeuroscienceNew. Retrieved August 25, 2017 from http://neurosciencenews.com/dancing-brain-aging-7377/

Frontiers “Dancing Can Reverse the Signs of Aging in the Brain.” http://neurosciencenews.com/dancing-brain-aging-7377/ (accessed August 25, 2017).

Abstract

Dancing or Fitness Sport? The Effects of Two Training Programs on Hippocampal Plasticity and Balance Abilities in Healthy Seniors

Age-related degenerations in brain structure are associated with balance disturbances and cognitive impairment.

However, neuroplasticity is known to be preserved throughout lifespan and physical training studies with seniors could reveal volume increases in the hippocampus (HC), a region crucial for memory consolidation, learning and navigation in space, which were related to improvements in aerobic fitness.

Moreover, a positive correlation between left HC volume and balance performance was observed. Dancing seems a promising intervention for both improving balance and brain structure in the elderly. It combines aerobic fitness, sensorimotor skills and cognitive demands while at the same time the risk of injuries is low.

Hence, the present investigation compared the effects of an 18-month dancing intervention and traditional health fitness training on volumes of hippocampal subfields and balance abilities.

Before and after intervention, balance was evaluated using the Sensory Organization Test and HC volumes were derived from magnetic resonance images (3T, MP-RAGE). Fourteen members of the dance (67.21 ± 3.78 years, seven females), and 12 members of the fitness group (68.67 ± 2.57 years, five females) completed the whole study.

Both groups revealed hippocampal volume increases mainly in the left HC (CA1, CA2, subiculum). The dancers showed additional increases in the left dentate gyrus and the right subiculum. Moreover, only the dancers achieved a significant increase in the balance composite score. Hence, dancing constitutes a promising candidate in counteracting the age-related decline in physical and mental abilities.

“Dancing or Fitness Sport? The Effects of Two Training Programs on Hippocampal Plasticity and Balance Abilities in Healthy Seniors” by Kathrin Rehfeld, Patrick Müller, Norman Aye, Marlen Schmicker, Milos Dordevic, Jörn Kaufmann, Anita Hökelmann and Notger G. Müller1, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. Published online June 15 2017 doi:10.3389/fnhum.2017.00305

Feel free to share this Neuroscience News.

Source: https://neurosciencenews.com/dancing-brain-aging-7377/

The Incredible Health Benefits of Dance

Why dancing could be a promising candidate to counteract age-related decline

Words by Sophia Auld

When Ernie Diaz was just 24 years old, the time bomb ticking in his brain – what doctors call an arteriovenous malformation – exploded, causing a massive stroke.

Despite being given just 50/50 survival odds, Diaz pulled through. And then, a few months into his recovery, he decided to take up salsa dancing.

As it turned out, this not only benefited him physically, but helped Diaz – now 36 – regain much-needed confidence and mental function too.

It seems that Diaz, who works in real estate and now teaches dance, was onto something. Apart from the obvious physical benefits, evidence is suggesting that dance has additional benefits for the brain.

Studies using brain imaging have identified regions that contribute to dance learning and performance, including the motor and somatosensory cortices, basal ganglia, and cerebellum.

These areas work to plan, coordinate and execute complex dance movements.

As adult dance becomes increasingly popular, people of all ages are taking up ballroom, ballet and pole dancing classes, among many others. But these lessons are not just a good work-out. Research is showing that dance can actually help manage the symptoms of a range of nervous system disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease and dementia. It can also help to maintain healthy brain function.

The Secret to Staying Younger for Longer

Professor Gene Moyle, a sport and exercise psychologist from the Queensland University of Technology, explains that findings from numerous research studies conducted over the past five years have provided clear evidence for the positive impact that dance has on the brain.

“These results have not only focused on how dancing can decrease the risk of dementia, prevent dizziness, and slow down ageing in the brain,” she explains, “but how it can also increase a range of cognitive functions.

” These include boosting memory, enhancing neuroplasticity (the ability to ‘rewire’ the brain), and improving motor (movement) function.

“The integrated requirements of memory and movement that dance is comprised of helpfully engages many aspects of the brain’s functions – to our advantage,” Moyle says. These advantages have been explored in various scientific studies.

Research published in 2017 in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, for example, compared the effects of 18 months of dancing versus endurance training on the hippocampus region of the brain – an area involved in memory, balance and learning.

Both groups revealed increased hippocampal volumes, but only the dancers achieved a significant increase in their balance scores.

According to various studies dance could help to counteract age-related physical and mental decline.

This lead the researchers to conclude that dancing is a promising candidate for counteracting age-related decline in physical and mental abilities. Boogie for your brain Dance benefits the brain in four main ways, says Susan Hillier, Professor of Neuroscience and Rehabilitation at the University of South Australia. The first is physical.

Just going for a brisk walk or cycle, dance raises the heart rate, gets the blood pumping and has all the known benefits of physical activity. The second comes from the innate rhythm of dance. “The brain has got this resonance system,” Hillier explains. “When there is a rhythm or a beat, it helps to tap into more basic neural networks.

This is proving to be particularly helpful for people with Parkinson’s Disease, Hillier says, where the lack of a neurotransmitter chemical in a part of the brain called the basal ganglia causes problems with goal-directed behaviour, walking. The third aspect is the intrinsic reward of dancing. “Having a good dance is incredibly therapeutic and makes you laugh,” Hillier says.

“On an emotional level there’s something about dancing that people love. We can couch it in scientific terms, but it is fun. That, in itself, is therapeutic.” She says this is especially true in rehabilitation, where people get can tired of therapy. “Let’s keep [dance] as something fun, where people can have a get-together and … feel good in their capacity to play and muck about.

” In her work as a physiotherapist, Hillier has used dance as a form of rehabilitation. She notes that dance has many elements in common with traditional rehabilitation of nervous system injuries – weight-bearing, developing strength and control in both legs, shifting weight from one foot to the other, coordinating arm movements and maintaining balance.

For Diaz, the fun of salsa dancing was a key part of his recovery.

“I was determined that having a stroke was not going to stop me,” he says. He recalls listening to the music and watching the moves until he could copy them.

“I remember going home and drawing little stick figures doing what we’d learnt that day, just so I didn’t forget it,” he says. And dance gave him something far more important. “I thought I was dumb and stupid,” he says.

“I thought I was worthless because of having a stroke.”

The Secret to Self Confidence

Learning to dance provided a massive boost for his self-confidence. It also gave him many new friends. The social aspect of dancing is the fourth benefit, Hillier explains. She says that physios who run classes comment on the positive interactions of people with disabilities within the groups.

“Instead of sitting around … they’re up on their feet helping each other feel good. There is something inherently rewarding about jumping about with a group of people with a shared understanding, a shared goal. “Most people don’t want to go to a gym and push weights around … but there are lots of people who are happy to go to a dance class,” she says.

“I’m talking about old guys who were sports junkies in their youth. I’ve had a few that I’ve worked with in my clinic, and they love it. Nobody’s judging them, they’re having fun and they can feel that it’s really doing them good.” Hillier adds that no prior experience is required.

And for Diaz, who teaches salsa and bachata (a form of dance from the Dominican Republic), there is no good excuse not to give dance a try.

“When people say to me,  ‘I can’t dance, I’ve got two left feet’, I’m , ‘Hold on a second, buddy. I’ve had a stroke and I learnt how to dance and now I’m teaching. So don’t tell me you can’t do it, because you can.

’” The neuroscience of dance While the many benefits are clear, researchers are only just starting to uncover the mechanisms behind how dance helps the brain. Hillier explains that, because of its complexity, dance excites many different brain regions.

“If you wired people’s brains up while they were dancing, they’d be shining a Christmas tree,” she says. “Much more so than with other, more basic kinds of physical activity.”

“Dance involves focused and conscious attention on moving in synchrony with the accompanying music,” she says.

“In addition, the dancers are encouraged to express their feelings and tap into emotions – which could increase motivation, provide enjoyment, and potentially improve mood.

” She says that Parkinson’s involves a deficit in the brain’s internal timing, which leads to gait problems. The external cues used in dance, including vision (watching the teachers) and sound (music), can serve as surrogate cues for the impaired internal timing.

Dancing could have the potential to increase motivation, provide enjoyment, and improve mood.

These can bypass the damaged brain areas and improve gait by providing feedback signals that temporarily ‘recalibrate’ internal pacing.

Her study looked at the effects of classes the Dance for PD model, primarily focusing on gait, cognition and cognitive dual-tasking (performing a mental task such as subtracting numbers while walking) in people with early-stage PD.

It also assessed the severity of the disease, functional mobility, habitual physical activity levels, psychological symptoms (including anxiety and depression) and overall quality of life. One group attended a one-hour dance class twice weekly for 12 weeks, while a control group had treatment as usual.

The study found that gait and dual-tasking improved significantly in the dance group compared to controls. Both episodic memory and executive function improved, but the remaining cognitive skills did not change. There were also significant improvements in disease severity, functional mobility, anxiety, depression and quality of life in the dance group.

Kalyani notes that the dance classes had high levels of adherence, with an average attendance rate of 93 per cent. “The social nature of dance promotes longer-term participation and adherence,” she explains.

“The opportunity for socialisation and to meet people with the same condition also facilitates the psychological adjustment to the disease.

” She adds that the pleasurable experience of participation fosters positive changes in perspective and attitude – which may encourage a more proactive approach to disease management.

The study concluded that dance classes could be a highly useful supportive therapy for the management of PD symptoms. As Professor Moyle notes in a 2015 article in The Conversation, dance may mostly be associated with after-hours exploits ( parties, weddings or TV shows), but it also provides a promising avenue of neuroscientific exploration.

Source: https://www.mindfood.com/article/happy-feet-happy-brain-the-incredible-health-benefits-of-dance/

Dancing Keeps Older Brains on the Ball

Why dancing could be a promising candidate to counteract age-related decline

Dancing can counteract age-related decline in physical and mental abilities, new research shows.

Investigators at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Magdeburg, Germany, found that older people who routinely partake in physical exercise can reverse the signs of aging in the brain, but it's dancing that has the most profound effect.

“The results of our study suggest that participating in a long-term dance program that requires constant cognitive and motor learning is superior to engaging in repetitive physical exercises in inducing neuroplasticity in the brains of seniors,” study author Patrick Müller, a PhD candidate at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, told Medscape Medical News.

“Therefore, dance is highly promising in its potential to counteract age-related gray matter decline,” he said.

The study was published online June 15 in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

For the study, the investigators compared an 18-month dance training program to 18 months of endurance and flexibility training in improving hippocampal volume and balance in healthy senior volunteers (aged 63 to 80 years).

The researchers studied the hippocampus (HC) because it is associated with learning, memory, and balance and also is the site of adult neuroplasticity in the brain.

Both groups showed increases in hippocampal volume. However, the dancers also showed increases in regions most strongly associated with neuroplasticity. In addition, only the dancers displayed significant improvement in balance.

The HC “is affected not only by pathological aging such as in Alzheimer's disease but also by the normal aging process resulting in deficits in memory, learning, and spatial navigation at old age,” the authors write.

Although MRI studies demonstrate that the HC atrophies with each decade and that the process “accelerates in very old age,” other research suggests that the HC “counts among the few brain regions with the ability to generate new neurons throughout the lifespan.”

Aerobic fitness and training have been shown to improve hippocampal volume, which may contribute to better memory function. However, the mechanism of this association and the role of cardiorespiratory fitness in modulating hippocampal gray matter volume are “still under debate.”

The HC is also involved in spatial navigation and motor sequence consolidation, “suggesting that motor skill learning and motor fitness can have an impact on hippocampal volume without any cardiorespiratory change,” the authors note.

Previous research suggests that motor skill training and balance training can lead to “morphological alterations” in the brain and increases in hippocampal gray matter.

“These findings highlight the behavioral relevance of structural brain plasticity in the HC for the learning process,” they note.

Dancing involves the “integration of sensory information from multiple channels (auditory, vestibular, visual, somatosensory)” and “fine-grained motor control of the whole body.”

Previous studies have provided evidence of improved performance on balance and memory tasks in elderly dancers, but the underlying neural mechanisms “have not been addressed comprehensively so far.”

“We know from animal research that combining physical activity with sensory enrichment has stronger and longer-lasting effects on the brain than either treatment alone,” said Müller.

The current study was designed to investigate that theory, he said, noting that it built on previous research conducted by his group suggesting that the effect is mediated by brain-derived neurotrophic factor.

The authors conducted a prospective, randomized, longitudinal trial in healthy seniors that compared a specially designed dance program that required participants to continually learn new choreography and a traditional fitness program consisting of repetitive exercises, such as cycling on an ergometer or Nordic walking.

The researchers used voxel-based morphometry to conduct whole-brain analyses in the precentral and parahippocampal gyrus. They noted that the hippocampus is not homoegeneous but consists of specialized subfields, including the subiculum, cornu ammonis (CA) 1 – 4, and the dentate gyrus (DG).

They investigated these regions because the subiculum is involved in working memory and spatial relations, CA3 and DG are involved in memory and early retrieval, and CA1 is involved in late retrieval, consolidation, and recognition. Although all of these regions are interconnected, the DG is one of the few regions of the adult brain in which neurogenesis occurs.

They also assessed the effects of the interventions on balancing capabilities and their relationship to hippocampal subfield volumes, because the hippocampus is also known to be involved with balance.

The first 6 months of training consisted of twice-weekly 90-min dancing or fitness classes. From months 6 through 12, the number of sessions was reduced to one per week.

Dance classes involved constantly changing choreographies, which participants were required to memorize accurately. Single-leg stances, skips and hops, steps used in chasseé, mambo, cha-cha, grapevine, and jazz square were designed to “challenge the balance system.” Also included were patterns in which participants moved their arms away from the center of pressure.

The dance group's routines in the different genres were changed every second week to keep particpants engaged in a constant learning process. They were required to recall the routines under pressure of time and without cues from the instructor.

The traditional fitness-training program included mostly repetitive sequences of endurance training, strength-endurance training, and flexibility training (stretching and mobility exercises). During the first 6 months, participants engaged in a bicycle activity. During the second period of the study (12 months), the participants completed a Nordic walking program.

The researchers used MRI and voxel-based morphometry with hippocampal mask and analyzed volume changes in five subfields of the HP: the CM (CA1-CA3), DG (including CA4), and subiculum.

Postural control was assessed using the Sensory Organization Test, which provides information about the contribution of the visual, somatosensory, and vestibular systems in the maintenance of balance.

Of the participants, 14 members of the dance group (aged 67.21 ± 3.78 years, seven women), and 12 members of the fitness group (aged 68.67 ± 2.57 years, five women) participated for the entire 18-month study period.

There were no group differences at baseline.

To explore changes in hippocampal gray matter volume during the intervention, the researchers used repeated comparisons of baseline and posttest values.

They found a significant interaction effect in the right hippocampus (MNI-coordinates: x = 28, y = −16, z D = −23; P [FDR] = 0.049, F + 17.03]).

But post hoc paired t-tests showed significant increases in right hippocampal volume only in the dance group (MNI-coordinates: x = 29, y = −16, z D = −27; P [FDR] = 0.001, t = 6.10]).

There were no group differences at baseline. However, repeated measurement of hippocampal subfield volumes showed a main effect of time in the left CA1, the left CA2, the left and right subiculum, and the left CA4/DG.

Although there were no significant interactions by group, paired t -tests showed significant volume increases for the dancers in the left CA1, the left CA2, the left CA4, the DG, and the left and right subiculum. For the exercise group,volume increases were observed in the left CA1, the left CA2, and the left subiculum.

On the composite equilibrium score, repeated measurement of balance data showed an interaction effect with group. In particular, there was a “main effect of time” in the somatosensory and vestibular contribution, but no significant time × group interaction effects after 18 months of fitness training.

Post hoc tests revealed that the dancers improved in the use of the sensory, visual, and vestibular systems (P = .004, P = .027, and P = .007, respectively). The exercise group improved in the use of the somatosensory and vestibular systems (P = .006 and P = .004, respectively) but not in the visual system.

“We know from animal research that combining physical activity with sensory enrichment has stronger and longer-lasting effects on the brain than either treatment alone,” Müller noted.

“For humans, dancing has been suggested to be analogous to such training, and we presume that the advantage is related to the multimodal nature of dancing, which combines physical, cognitive, and coordinative challenges,” he explained.

The authors add that balancing is “an important everyday function crucial, for example, for social mobility” and that impaired balance leads to falls, which constitute a “major health risk factor and consequences both on morbidity (and even mortality) and health care costs.”

The authors note that the lack of an inactive control group, the small sample size, and the relatively small change in the overall score limit their findings.

Commenting on the study for Medscape Medical News, Madeleine E.

Hackney, PhD, assistant professor of medicine, Division of General Medicine and Geriatrics, Emory School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia, said the study “provides promising initial evidence that multimodal physical activity, which is both mentally and physically challenging, may directly alter the central nervous system specifically in areas involved in memory operations.”

The findings “will justify future larger trials that may or may not confirm these findings,” said Dr Hackney, who was not involved with the study.

She noted study limitations beyond those cited by the authors. The control group switched from ergometer cycling during the first 6 months to the Nordic walking program during the remaining 12 months, and the cycling “would not be expected to benefit balance,” although walking might have done so.

Additionally, the authors state that they “avoided combined arm and leg movement” in the control group so as to minimize coordinative demands, “but that is hard to imagine in a Nordic walking program.”

Nevertheless, “the results are compelling and the methods the researchers employed seem to be vigorous,” she said.

The study has important take-home messages for practicing clinicians, she emphasized.

“Exercise is good for you, and certainly traditional cardiovascular/resistance training has its place. However, dance typically will engage more cognitive resources and may be ultimately more functional because movements are trained, not just specific muscles.”

Müller stressed that the study can fill an important gap in approaches to dementia prevention in that there is a “demographically induced increase in the prevalence of dementia on the one hand and a lack of causal pharmacologic therapies on the other hand.” Preventing dementia by modifying lifestyle factors is therefore of increasing importance.

“Our study results suggest that 'social enrichment' and a combination of physical and cognitive activities influences neuroprotection best,” he said.

He added that beyond dancing, “a healthy lifestyle and physical exercise in general can help the brain stay young.”

The authors and Dr Hackney have disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

Front Hum Neurosci. Published online June 15, 2017. Full text

Source: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/885079

Dancing can reverse the signs of aging in the brain

Why dancing could be a promising candidate to counteract age-related decline

As we grow older we suffer a decline in mental and physical fitness, which can be made worse by conditions Alzheimer's disease. A new study, published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, shows that older people who routinely partake in physical exercise can reverse the signs of aging in the brain, and dancing has the most profound effect.

“Exercise has the beneficial effect of slowing down or even counteracting age-related decline in mental and physical capacity,” says Dr Kathrin Rehfeld, lead author of the study, based at the German center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, Magdeburg, Germany.

“In this study, we show that two different types of physical exercise (dancing and endurance training) both increase the area of the brain that declines with age.

In comparison, it was only dancing that lead to noticeable behavioral changes in terms of improved balance.”

Elderly volunteers, with an average age of 68, were recruited to the study and assigned either an eighteen-month weekly course of learning dance routines, or endurance and flexibility training.

Both groups showed an increase in the hippocampus region of the brain. This is important because this area can be prone to age-related decline and is affected by diseases Alzheimer's.

It also plays a key role in memory and learning, as well as keeping one's balance.

While previous research has shown that physical exercise can combat age-related brain decline, it is not known if one type of exercise can be better than another.

To assess this, the exercise routines given to the volunteers differed.

The traditional fitness training program conducted mainly repetitive exercises, such as cycling or Nordic walking, but the dance group were challenged with something new each week.

Dr Rehfeld explains, “We tried to provide our seniors in the dance group with constantly changing dance routines of different genres (Jazz, Square, Latin-American and Line Dance).

Steps, arm-patterns, formations, speed and rhythms were changed every second week to keep them in a constant learning process.

The most challenging aspect for them was to recall the routines under the pressure of time and without any cues from the instructor.”

These extra challenges are thought to account for the noticeable difference in balance displayed by those participants in dancing group. Dr Rehfeld and her colleagues are building on this research to trial new fitness programs that have the potential of maximizing anti-aging effects on the brain.

“Right now, we are evaluating a new system called “Jymmin” (jamming and gymnastic). This is a sensor-based system which generates sounds (melodies, rhythm) physical activity. We know that dementia patients react strongly when listening to music. We want to combine the promising aspects of physical activity and active music making in a feasibility study with dementia patients.”

Dr Rehfeld concludes with advice that could get us up our seats and dancing to our favorite beat.

“I believe that everybody would to live an independent and healthy life, for as long as possible. Physical activity is one of the lifestyle factors that can contribute to this, counteracting several risk factors and slowing down age-related decline. I think dancing is a powerful tool to set new challenges for body and mind, especially in older age.”

This study falls into a broader collection of research investigating the cognitive and neural effects of physical and cognitive activity across the lifespan.

make a difference: sponsored opportunity

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Materials provided by Frontiers. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Source: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/08/170825124902.htm

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