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Writer reveals secret joys to dancing, what it can do for all

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Writer reveals secret joys to dancing, what it can do for all

Sophomore Maddie Moats dances on stage in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the National Dance Honors competition. She has danced for 13 years. Moats  said she enjoys dancing on stage, she also loves to spend time training in her dance studio.

Sophomore Maddie Moats dances on stage in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the National Dance Honors competition. She has danced for 13 years. Moats said she enjoys dancing on stage, she also loves to spend time training in her dance studio. "Although dance can be kept a personal, private outlet for creativity, I also want dance to be shared," Moats said. "There’s a reason that a significant part of social gatherings integrates some type of dance floor and music."

Photo courtesy VISUAL TECH PRO

Sophomore Maddie Moats dances on stage in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the National Dance Honors competition. She has danced for 13 years. Moats said she enjoys dancing on stage, she also loves to spend time training in her dance studio. "Although dance can be kept a personal, private outlet for creativity, I also want dance to be shared," Moats said. "There’s a reason that a significant part of social gatherings integrates some type of dance floor and music."

Photo courtesy VISUAL TECH PRO

Photo courtesy VISUAL TECH PRO

Sophomore Maddie Moats dances on stage in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the National Dance Honors competition. She has danced for 13 years. Moats said she enjoys dancing on stage, she also loves to spend time training in her dance studio. "Although dance can be kept a personal, private outlet for creativity, I also want dance to be shared," Moats said. "There’s a reason that a significant part of social gatherings integrates some type of dance floor and music."

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I have been dancing for 13 years of my life, and throughout all of those years, dance has become something I closely relate to my identity. Through countless hours of training in ballet, jazz, contemporary, tap and many other forms of dance, unmeasurable amounts of blood, sweat, and tears (a necessary cliche), have shaped me into the person I am today. What I find to be the perfect combination of sport and art, dance provides a physical and emotional outlet, one that I am not sure I would remain sane without. Dance has stuck around with me in times of sadness and happiness, as well as every emotion in between. Although dance is such a significant part of my life, I realize not everyone has been as lucky to explore dance in that way. Many, understandably, find themselves reluctant to let themselves dance out of fear of being judged, but it’s important for everyone to step out of their comfort zones, try something new and dance.

Dancing has helped me discover who I am, as well as navigate the world around me.”

— Maddie Moats

It goes without saying that dance is a great way to exercise and take care of your health, which is important, though sometimes grueling. In addition to physical health, though,  dancing can improve mental health through endorphins. During aerobic exercise (cardio), like dancing, increased heart rate stimulates the release of endorphins, which are probably the most ultimate feel-good chemicals in which the body produces. Endorphins are a type of neurotransmitter that works to signal feelings of positivity in your brain. They have been found to help with depression, anxiety and reducing feelings of pain. After exercising and with the release of endorphins, one may experience a sense of euphoria, so take that in addition to some of your favorite music, and you have a neurologically-proven good time.

Science aside, the creative outlet that dance offers is second to none. Many take up painting, playing music or other arts to express creativity, however, these can be costly. To create and express with dance, all you need is yourself. There is something beautiful in being able to create movement, shapes and stories with your own body, and I find it, in a sense, empowering. Fundamentally, you are all you need for dance. Everything else, such as classes or fancy shoes, is optional.

Although dance can be kept a personal, private outlet for creativity, I also want dance to be shared. There’s a reason that a significant part of social gatherings integrates some type of dance floor and music. Dancing with other people should be a freeing way to let go. It’s true that dancing publicly can be a vulnerable and daunting idea, but once you leave inhibitions behind, many feel encouraged to be themselves and have fun, at least by the people that matter. They may even feel inspired to follow your lead. Time after time, I have found dance to be contagious.

I feel selfish, in a way, for my harboring of dance’s miracles, not encouraging enough people to explore dance like I have the privilege to do. Dancing has helped me discover who I am, as well as navigate the world around me. Whether it be on stage in front of an audience or in my room alone, dance is something that I will always have, and I would like for everyone to share that comfort with me.

About the Writer
Maddie Moats, Reporter

Maddie Moats was born in Akron, Ohio, and she moved to Prosper in 2012. She is currently a sophomore and lives with her mom, dad and beloved dogs, Brutus...

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Writer reveals secret joys to dancing, what it can do for all