Benefits

Exercise and Physical Fitness
Romance
Fashion

Arthur Murray Dance Students gain many benefits through becoming better dancers. While developing your dancing skills you should not be surprised if you:

  • Get more fun and enjoyment out of your social life
  • Enjoy increased self confidence
  • Meet new people and make new friends
  • Improve your overall health
  • Feel more at ease in social situations
  • Find the exercise and fitness you've wanted
  • Make your partner happy
  • Enjoy attending more parties
  • Find your business relationships improving
  • Acquire more grace and poise
  • Dress up and have Fun
  • Overcome shyness
  • Relieve stress
  • Stand out on the dance floor
  • Never say "no" to a dance invitation
  • Discover recreation or entertainment in a new way
  • Feel refreshed and relaxed

Exercise and Physical Fitness

With the pressures of job and social obligations tugging us every which way, it's more and more difficult to find time for exercise. Maybe that's why Americans are struggling with their weight and health more than ever.

It's no secret that moderate exercise and sensible eating habits are the key to remaining trim and fit. However, the thought of spending thirty minutes on a treadmill, or jogging around the block five times is out of the question for many of us. Dancing works like a stress and tension reducer. For people on a hectic schedule it can become a passion that helps you improve your attitude and increase your confidence in both social and business situations.

That's what makes dance the ideal exercise! After all, dancing is a mild aerobic workout, minus the boring part! When you take dance lessons, you make exercise a fun and enjoyable social event, every night of the week. Your dance "work out" takes place with pleasant music and everyone's in a good mood. It's fun.

Consider these dance facts:

  • Dance contributes to increased personal confidence.
  • Olympic athletes often include dance in their training to sharpen their control, agility, speed and balance.
  • Dance is considered to be one of the top five physical activities, out of 60 studied.
  • Dance contributes to good posture and body alignment.
  • Dancing encourages gentle stretching.
  • Dance increases your flexibility and stamina.
  • As an aerobic exercise, dance benefits your cardiovascular system as you swing and sway from hips to shoulders.
  • Some doctors recommend thirty minutes of dance, three times per week.
  • Ever since the International Olympic Committee gave ballroom dancing provisional recognition, it has been getting a lot of attention as a true athletic activity. One look at the fitness level and physiques of professional ballroom competitors, trainers and dance teachers is proof of its virtues.

"Ballroom dance is a rigorous activity that uses the larger muscle groups, and is usually done over the course of an hour, or an entire evening," said George B. Theiss, President of Arthur Murray International. "It's most frequently compared to ice dancing, and no one would question the athletic ability of an ice skater. Since we work without gliding across ice, it's possible that a competitive ballroom dancer might even be in better shape than a figure skater."

Many people turn to ballroom dance when more traditional exercise programs fall by the wayside, either because of injuries or sheer boredom. Ballroom dance is a low impact activity. This makes it accessible to people of at any age or fitness level. With less emphasis on "going for the burn" and more on having fun; the weight loss, improved circulation and aerobic conditioning emerges as a wonderful side effect.

Romance

Ballroom dancing is as romantic as it is enjoyable. For years the world's greatest romantics have known the best way to a lady's heart is to sweep her across the dance floor. Holding, touching and moving to the music is the most romantic skill any couple can add to their lives. Think of all the countless number of relationships that would have never started without the world's best ice breaker -- "may I have this dance".

The romantic properties of dance are a secret that all good dancers enjoy. For men, being able to recognize which dance the band is playing and having the confidence in your ability to walk across the floor and ask a lady to dance is a social prerequisite. For ladies, they will always be in demand as a partner once they master the grace and poise, the styling and the all-important following skills.

People will go to all extremes to make themselves attractive to the opposite sex. Hours are spent in the gym and millions are spent on cosmetics and stylish clothing just to gain a slight advantage in the dating game. Unfortunately for these people, they will always have to take a back seat to a good dancer. The best way to be noticed, in a favorable light, is on the dance floor. A couple of lessons at the Arthur Murray Dance Studio is all you will need to turn your dancing and romantic life around.

Much of the recent excitement surrounding the romance of ballroom dancing started when Michael Douglas told Annette Benning that he danced so well because of six lessons at Arthur Murray in "An American President. " Ballroom dance has captured Hollywood's imagination yet again in "Beautician and the Beast" with Fran Drescher. These dance scenes do the same thing for actors and their characters that dance does in real life. It provides a chance for you to express your emotions towards your partner, propelling your relationship into a more sensual mood, without moving into an R rating!

Plus, dancing can help keep two people together. After years of marriage, new excitement can be found together on the dance floor. It's a "shot in the arm". It encourages the spark of romance for stressed out, tension-plagued people. It's great for keeping a marriage interesting and long lasting. When surveyed, more women said they would prefer a night of dancing to flowers or chocolates for St. Valentine's Day.

Fashion

From high society weddings to fashion magazines, formal ball gowns and skirts have returned to haute couture and Hollywood. Not surprisingly, these fashions have also returned to mainstream American wardrobes.

"The nature of our organization gives us a remarkable, in-depth close up look at America," said John Kimmins, Vice President & Director of Dance at Arthur Murray International. "We know on a personal level where Americans are regarding dance, dress, and social recreation. And we have watched the return of ballgowns in the dance studios and in many of the affairs that our students attend."

Dance studios aren't the only place where the ballroom style has returned. Starting with last spring's Oscars, Hollywood has returned to high style, where the ballgown, with full skirts and elaborate bodices, is in all its glory. Versace, Christian Dior and the ever-ebullient Christian Lacroix are continuing to bring elaborate haute couture back to Hollywood in a way not seen for decades.

Recently fashion magazines and gossip columns detailed a high society international wedding where everyone who was anyone showed up in designer ball skirts and gowns. The "simple black cocktail dress" is very much "in" for an evening out.

But where does one wear these elaborate confections if you have not been invited to present an award on national television, as might be expected in such major cities like New York, LA, Chicago or your hometown? Students at Arthur Murray Dance Studios throughout the country are arriving for their weekly practice sessions in floor-length ballgowns. Dressing up is part of the fun of taking lessons, feeling as if you have taken a mini-vacation from the everyday world into a fun, vibrant party every week.

A Dance Vacation can be enjoyed without ever leaving town. Imagine yourself dressed up ready to go out dancing on a cruise ship's deck, with other party goers....or put yourself in an outfit that works in a French Disco, or an Italian Ballroom overlooking the Mediterranean. Many studios offer special theme events and practice parties where students "dress-up" and dance, get to know other dancers also learning the steps and practicing the moves. Fashions and dress range from the formal which also help students get comfortable with the styles, to Country and casual. Taking an Arthur Murray Dance Vacation can be a chill-out, cool-off evening fantasy, without leaving town.

Practicality is another aspect behind the trend. "After all," said one student, "If I'm going to dance ballroom in a ballgown, I had better get my steps in place when my hemline is long!"

In recent months, many studios have seen a dramatic upswing in the number of couples and singles taking lessons that focus on the standard, classic ballroom dances. One major driving force behind the shift to standards has been changes in fashion. After all, if you can't make the moves, the glamorous apparel and fashions are not half as gorgeous.