Building careers, raising families and caring for aging loved-ones all take a huge commitment of time for young and middle-aged adults. But when the kids finally leave the nest or other life changes allow a little more flexibility, time may open up to pursue hobbies and activities that once sparked passion. Recently a group of veteran dancers, all over the age of 50, are back in action performing for a crowd in Washington, D.C. proving they still have what it takes to capture the fans’ attention.
According to a recent Washington Post report, The Wizdom Dancers, a group of performers between the ages of 50 and 76 have returned to entertain enthusiastic crowds at Washington Wizards’ home games. The group is scheduled to dance during breaks and at halftime during 7 of the 40 home games. The unique dance squad is also the subject of an AARP YouTube documentary series, The Road to Wizdom. Several other NBA teams including the Chicago Bulls have dance teams comprised of older adults and organizers hope more will join in the fun.
Members of the team range in age and dance experience; many were former high school, college or even professional cheerleaders. Some are retired, some are grandmothers but all have a desire to stay active and most definitely are still able to nail the choreography for both newer and old school routines.
And beyond the excitement of performing for an audience and the pure joy of dancing, being part of the troupe also provides these women (and one man) with camaraderie and social interaction all while staying physically active. And studies have shown that dancing in particular; learning new steps while moving the body, help the aging brain stay sharp.
Whether you’re back shakin’ it on the dance floor or returning to the lanes as a masters swimmer, getting back to what brought joy to life in younger years can often still spark the same feelings in older age. There might be a few more aches and pains along for the ride but it’s well worth it for the thrill of doing something just for the fun!