“Let’s have a dance party!” You hear it all the time at our house. Sometimes it’s me suggesting it, most times it’s one of the kids. It’s never my husband, although the kids have been known to cajole him into participating on rare occasions. Apparently he still has some self respect left. I lost mine about the time I shat on the delivery table in a room full of people while giving birth to my son. (Sorry if I’ve crossed a line but really, the only thing shocking about that statement is admitting to it).
While some of you may agree with Mike that keeping your dignity is more important than releasing endorphins in this unconventional manner, I tend to disagree. Sure, if I caught you jumping around your living room all by your lonesome, I’d give you a weird look on principle, but it is so fun to bust a move every now and then with your kids.
As Longfellow once said (ladies, I’m talking about the poet here – don’t get too excited), “Music is the universal language of mankind.” Exposing your kids to music has so many benefits. Admittedly, this does not translate well to living room dance parties, because Lady Gaga is much more fun to dance to than Beethoven, but instilling a love of song and sharing the common theme of melodies can only be a good thing. You might want to leave Eminem out of it, though. I’m not so sure he’s good for fostering tender young minds to appreciate the lyrical qualities songs can possess.
Kids love dance parties. And what better way to create great memories than turning off the idiot box and having fun with the fam? Kids young and old love some good old fashioned rug cutting. Heck, the dog is right there jumping up to be part of the action and my 9 month old, Kaelum carries on and cries until I pick him up and twirl him around like an overgrown dreidel.
If I haven’t convinced you so far, think of the exercise component of the dance party. I dare you to jump around like a crazy person for an entire song without needing to clutch at your cramp while breathing like Darth by the end. It’s a serious workout. And not only can you do your cardio some good, but you can throw in a few stomach and butt clenching exercises in there like you’re having your own Richard Simmons party. Plus, your lymphatic system can’t drain on its own and jumping is a perfect way to get things flowing.
The only negative aspect I can think of is if your neighbours happen to glimpse you through an open curtain. I realized this could pose a problem when a dance party broke out spontaneously in front of the curtain-less kitchen window one dark night. They still talk to me so it’s all good.
So download some Mika (Lollipop is top notch for some foot shuffling fun), add some Usher (Without You is high energy), grab a few one hit wonders (Tubthumping is a fun one), throw in some old school C & C Music Factory (Gonna Make You Sweat is an understatement) and dance like your neighbour’s not watching.