ballet for the elderly

Ballet for the elderly has health benefits

The free classes, which are taught by members of The Australian Ballet’s education group and supplied by elderly care provider NurseWatch, were developed to open up the benefits of dancing to older adults locally.

In addition to allowing participants to dance, the courses show the background, layout and behind-the-scenes workings of whatever ballet production The Australian Ballet is touring.

The courses came about following NurseWatch founder Kate Spurway learnt that Queensland Ballet had conducted a study to the health benefits of ballet for older pupils.

During the courses, the teachers discuss the importance of posture and muscle strength in older age.

They also help participants to carefully watch their breathing and understand where they may be holding tension in their body, said course teacher Ms McKeown.

Besides its physical components, Ms McKeown said that the program was as much about enhancing participants’ social health.