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Building strength to reduce falls

A new programme helps over 55s stay active through the power of dance

An older person with long blonde hair tied in a ponytail and wearing a bright purple hoodie is stood sideways on to a sturdy chair. They are holding the chair with one hand and their other arm is raised out to the side at shoulder height. They are looking down to the ground and smiling. Part of a Dance On session delivered by darts in Doncaster.

darts’ successful Dance On programme is expanding with brand new sessions aimed at fostering strength, balance and overall wellbeing for Doncaster adults aged 55 and above. Supported by Get Doncaster Moving, this innovative initiative blends the joy of movement with targeted exercises to enhance stability and coordination, build confidence and reduce the risk of falls.

The programme will be delivered by experienced dance artists and qualified postural stability instructors Charlotte and Alex, who will ensure that participants receive expert guidance. These lively, fun sessions are flexible and tailored to the needs of those taking part. Suitable for all abilities and mobilities, participants can take part seated or standing, with or without support.

Dance On Strength and Balance is not just about physical activity; it’s also about making connections with others and building new friendships, and there is time for a cuppa and a chat after sessions. Charlotte Armitage, Dance Development Core Artist at darts said:

Dance has the incredible ability to connect mind, body, and soul. Through Dance On Strength and Balance, we're not just guiding movements; we're unlocking a world of vitality, promoting strength, balance, and a renewed sense of confidence for everyone over 55.
An older adult with brown bobbed hair wearing a red jumper and jeans is seated in a sturdy chair. They have one arm down by their side and the other arm is reaching overhead in a side bend. Part of a Dance On session delivered by darts in Doncaster.

Led by darts, One Dance UK, the University of Leeds and Yorkshire Dance, the pioneering Dance On programme has proved to be a highly successful model, enhancing the lives of hundreds of older adults over the past seven years – many of whom who were previously deemed ‘inactive’. Participants have reported that taking part in Dance On sessions has improved their physical health as well as how happy and connected they feel to others, saying:

I have limited mobility, use a wheelchair and have COPD. However, the dance moves and exercise help with my mobility and give me a sense of freedom of movement.

Dance On Strength and Balance will run on a weekly basis for 12 weeks from Monday 22nd January 2024, with a break on 1st and 8th April for Easter. All sessions will be held from 10:30am-12pm at Woodfield Park Community Hall, Tickhill Road, Doncaster, DN4 8QN with time for socialising at Café Flourish afterwards. Sessions are free and no booking is required. People can just turn up and join in. For more information about Dance On, please contact or telephone 01302 341662.

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