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J Aging Phys Act. 2014 Jan;22(1):146-53. doi: 10.1123/japa.2012-0234. Epub 2013 Mar 26.

Scottish country dance: benefits to functional ability in older women.

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1
Faculty of Health and Science, University of Cumbria, Lancaster, UK.

Abstract

The effects of long-term participation in Scottish country dance on body composition, functional ability, and balance in healthy older females were examined. Participants were grouped into dancers and physically active nondancers (ages 60-70 and 70-80 for both groups). Physical activity, body composition (body-mass index, skinfold thickness, waist-to-hip ratio), functional ability (6-min walk distance, 6-m walk time, 8-ft up-and-go time, lower body flexibility, shoulder flexibility), and static balance were measured. Younger dancers and physically active nondancers had similar 6-min walk distance, 6-m walk time, and 8-ft up-and-go time results; however, while older dancers performed similarly to younger dancers, older physically active nondancers performed poorer than their younger counterparts (p < .05). Body composition and static balance were the same for all groups. Regular physical activity can maintain body composition and postural stability with advancing age; however, Scottish country dance can delay the effects of aging on locomotion-related functional abilities.

PMID:
23538484
DOI:
10.1123/japa.2012-0234
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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