Betty Shoup was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in March 2015. At her physician’s recommendation, she began taking dance classes with Arthur Murray Thousand Oaks shortly thereafter.
For centuries it has been known that dancing is a very beneficial activity in regards of health. A major study has added to the growing evidence that stimulating one’s mind by dancing can ward off Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia, mush as physical exercise can keep the body fit. Dancing also increases cognitive acuity at all ages.
Betty’s daughter Janet is her fulltime caregiver, taking advantage of the free time while Betty is dancing three times a week at Arthur Murray, where she is certainly the Belle of the Ball. The boys (male instructors) all fight over her when she walks in the studio!
“Betty is a ray of sunshine,” says Zak White, her primary instructor. “She epitomizes the saying ‘Life is better when you are dancing.’ She is always happy, but when she is on the dance floor, she is a delight!”
Ben and Barbara Green also take dance at Arthur Murray Thousand Oaks, but for a different reason. Ben has been diagnosed with Cerebellum Ataxia, which includes movement and balance issues similar to Parkinson’s. He has been dancing for about 15 months. While Ben enjoys the therapeutic benefits of dance, Barbara also takes advantage of their time at the studio to perfect her own dance moves.
Dance addresses each of the key areas that have been identified as being important for an exercise program designed for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease, a progressive, neurodegenerative movement disorder that is often accompanied by impaired balance and walking and reduced quality of life. In addition to that, dance is an enjoyable and socially engaging activity. In fact, dance in a social setting may enhance motivation.
Robert and Christy Melgoza own the Arthur Murray Studios in Thousand Oaks and Woodland Hills, which has just relocated to a larger, state-of-the-art studio designed by them. “We have several clients at both locations who are taking dance for its numerous benefits beyond the physical exercise. It is an incredibly rewarding experience for all of our instructors to have such a positive impact on so many lives,” said Robert Melgoza.
Author: Rhonnie Curt, Society Social Calendar Magazine
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