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Dance Can Improve Mental Health of Teen Girls

Dance Improves Mental Health of Teen GirlsNew research suggests that young girls can dance their way to better mental health.

A new Swedish study discovered symptoms of depression, stress, fatigue, and headaches were alleviated with regular dancing.

Anna Duberg, a physical therapist and doctoral candidate at Örebro University, studied the benefit of dance training among a group that included 112 Swedish girls, 13 to 19 years of age.

She discovered regular dance practice helped to prevent and treat mood disorders and depression. Dance class was also found to foster enhanced self-esteem and a greater capacity to deal with everyday problems.

Duburg noted that the study group had gone to see the school nurse for symptoms such as anxiety and depression, fatigue, headaches, and back, neck, and shoulder pain.

In the study, 59 of the girls were randomized to a group that regularly danced together two days a week and 53 girls to a control group where the girls did not change their living habits.

Researchers discovered girls in the dance group demonstrated reduced psychosomatic complaints and reported increased self-esteem as compared with the control group. The positive effect persisted at follow-ups four and eight months after the dance training ended.

Researchers report that 91 percent of the girls in the dance group felt that the dance study had been a positive experience. Experts hope that in the long run this exposure to a beneficial physical activity may also lead to a more healthful lifestyle.

Source: Swedish Research Council

Girls in a dance class photo by shutterstock.

Dance Can Improve Mental Health of Teen Girls

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Dance Can Improve Mental Health of Teen Girls. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 12, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2012/11/22/dance-can-improve-mental-health-of-teen-girls/48024.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.