Numerous scientific studies demonstrate that physical exercise is extremely effective in maintaining healthy brain function as one ages. Music is a known memory trigger; while studies show dance trumps all others forms of physical activity in terms of staving off cognitive decline as we age.
The Body, Mind, and Movement Program for Brain Fitness incorporates a wide variety of brain-stimulating activities in every class. Each class combines aerobic dance with the memory-triggering power of music, all the while, challenging the brain with new tasks of perception and coordination. This unique synergy of music, movement patterns, and cognitive exercise is designed to stimulate blood flow to the brain, strengthen communication between the right and left brain hemispheres, and flood the body with natural, exercise-induced hormones, elevating mood and stimulating cognitive function.
Equally important is the social aspect of the program. Laughter has been studied extensively for its positive effect on stress reduction and memory enhancement. For many participants the Body, Mind, and Movement Program is about the friendship, joy, and laughter that fills every class. The class is designed for both caregivers and receivers alike. Whether you simply wish to keep your own brain tuned up, or are accompanying a loved one with early- to mid-dementia symptoms, the program is equally accessible, enjoyable, and valuable for all.
- Geriatric Certificate Program – McMaster University
- Dignity and Vitality in Dementia Study – Research Lead
- Dancing with disAbility – Director
- Alzheimer Society of Ontario, Minds in Motion – Physical Activity Lead
- NCCP – [FMS] Fundamental Movement Skills
- CCAA – Seniors Fitness Instructor Certification
- Canfitpro – FIS Certified
- Canadian Falls Prevention – Trained
- Osteoporosis Society – BoneFit® Certified Instructor
- Dancing with Parkinson’s – Trained Instructor
Programs for Alzheimer’s, MCI, dementia, MS, Parkinson’s, cerebral palsy, and other neurodegenerative conditions
Our understanding of the human brain has skyrocketed in the past 15 years. The more I learn, the more I keep thinking about my dad, who had dementia, and how I might have used what I have I now know to help him deal his disease and continue to lead a happy and fulfilling life.
From my research role in the Dignity and Vitality in Dementia Study, came the realization that, as both a dancer and a professional fitness instructor, I was in a unique position to combine some of the most powerful tools for staving off cognitive decline: music & dance, aerobic activity, and cognitive challenge, and social interaction into a single program, not only for those with dementia, but for those with healthy minds who simply want to keep their brains tuned up as they age.