Dancing, Zumba, and hoola hoops — all good!

Dance Mile Portland 2018

I participated in a fun and very energetic event last weekend — Dance Mile Portland. Imagine dancing a mile through the streets of Portland’s Old Port. Exactly what we did.

Jen Boggs and daughter Dance Mile 2018

Encouragement and inspiration came from my Catching Health editorial accomplice Jen Boggs, who has danced with her daughter since the first Dance Mile five years ago. After reading the blog post she wrote about how much fun it was, I decided I needed to do it this year.

The entire event, which started and ended at Lincoln Park, was all about moving. To warm us up for the mile-long dance, we did Zumba. When you hear that music, you can’t help but dance! Besides being good for your body, learning dance steps is good for your brain.

And here’s something else that’s good for you. Hoola hooping. There they were scattered about just begging to be picked up. It’s been decades, but what the heck, I thought. And lo and behold, I’ve still got it! Hoola hooping is good for your core muscles, your coordination, and your mood.

Dance Mile Portland 2018

The moral of this blog post is … well, there are several … but the primary one is that staying active can be a lot of fun. One of the keys to being healthy is to keep moving. Even if you exercise for an hour every morning, you still need to keep moving throughout your day. As I mentioned in a recent post about taking care of your back, even if you just get up from your desk and walk around your chair several times throughout the day, that’s better than sitting (or standing) for hours on end. Dance, Zumba, hoola hoop, whatever. Find something you enjoy and do it!

Dance Mile Portland 2018

One other benefit of being active during the day is that it should help you get a good night’s sleep, which is also critical to our health and well being.

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Diane Atwood

About Diane Atwood

For more than 20 years, Diane was the health reporter on WCSH 6. Before that, a radiation therapist at Maine Medical Center and after, Manager of Marketing/PR at Mercy Hospital. She now hosts and produces the Catching Health podcast and writes the award-winning blog Catching Health with Diane Atwood.