Why Do We Dance?

This article was sent out by Austin Hayward, Publicity Chair, 2018 Canadian Square & Round Dance Convention:

Why Do We Dance?
We as Canadians are a very diversified and unique society exposed to many, many cultures and dances. We all listen to music and regardless of whom you are, we all feel some urge to dance at one time or another, or are expected to dance on occasion.

Dancing isn’t something that can be explained in words. It has to be danced. Why? Because dancing is far easier to feel than to explain.

If you already dance, it may be interesting for you to read the many reasons listed in this article that may pertain to your desire to dance, and some of these may surprise you. No, it is not because dancing is an inexpensive date, or because you have nothing better to do. So, lets be realistic.  Dancing makes me happy. It is said that there are many short cuts to happiness, and that dancing is one of them. I know that dancing makes my wife happy, and anything that puts a smile on her face is something I want to be doing.

Exercise for your mind?
Absolutely. Scientific studies have proven that dance has been shown to improve motor function, mental symptoms and overall quality of life in both people with and without Parkinson’s disease or dementia.
(Ten ways dance strengthens the brain  www.nicabm.com )

We dance for emotional stability.
“While I dance I cannot judge, I cannot hate, I cannot separate myself from life. I can only be joyful and whole. This is why I dance”  (Hans Bos)

George Bernard Shaw once wrote…“ if you can’t get rid of the skeletons in your closet, you’d best teach it to dance”

We all have circumstances in our lives that demand our attention and leave us with emotional highs and lows that consume our thoughts. When we dance, all our thoughts amalgamate to our dancing, leaving us free to experience the pleasures of friends, partners, music and dance.

We dance to express ourselves
Great dancers are not great because of their technique; they are great because of their passion. I see dance being used as communication between body and soul, to express what is too deep to find in words.
“The truest expression of a people is in its dance and in its music. Bodies never lie.”  (Agnes De Mille)

Dancing makes you more interesting as a person
“Dancing insists we take up space, and though it has no set direction, we go there together. Dance is dangerous, joyous, sexual, disruptive and contagious. It can happen anywhere, at any time, with anyone and everyone. Dance joins us and pushes us to go further.”  (Eve Ensler)

Personal artistic expressions draw attention to us as dancers. There are so many ways one can dance. Artistic expression can be unique to you as an individual and create interest in those that wonder where your creativity comes from. Is it your cultural background, your ethnic heritage or simply your love of dance?

It is said that dancing is all fun and no pressure
Now I realize that not everyone enjoys dancing as much as I do, but I really believe that you feel better when you dance. Some people feel nervous, or self conscious or maybe even shy? For us, life really is so much more fun when you throw all of that out the window and just live in the moment and dance. No one cares if you are a good dancer or not. “Dance like nobody is watching” is a common phrase with deep meaningful roots.

Dancing cures the “working is no fun” syndrome   Fact. (www.dancewithmeusa.com)

Eight reasons why dancing will enhance your mood and boost productivity while you work.

1: Dancing makes you smarter
2: Dancing encourages team building
3: Dancing improves your energy level and wellness
4: Dancing improves your health and fitness
5: Dancing boosts your confidence
6: Dancing improves your creativity
7: Through dancing, your perseverance and dedication are noticed and valued.
8: Dancing is fun.

Dancing provides us the opportunity to exercise, socialize and share our love of dance with friends. We would never have dreamed that dancing would expand our friendship circle to the magnitude it has become. How exciting it is to know that we can dance anywhere from Yuma, Az, to Halifax, NS to Vancouver Island and many, many other places in between, meeting new friends and renewing old friendships.

Travelling to dance conventions in Canada and the U.S. provides the perfect opportunity for us to see old friends again.

There are many reasons why people dance. For me to expand on or to justify any one person’s specific reason is not necessary; only that they dance is important.

Some will tell you that it is excellent exercise for the body and mind. Some dance for mental clarity. Some dance to show the world who they really are and project an image, or to overcome fear, improve relationships, decrease anxiety or to help them cope with daily stressors. Some dance because it makes them feel beautiful and powerful.

Jamie Benson explains how dance can replace your physical and psychological burdens (both chemically and emotionally) with pure joy. (www.thoughtcatalogue.com/jamie-benson

The best part is that literally, anyone can dance for whatever the reason.

Why do we dance?
Perhaps a better question would be …….. Why would we not?

See you at the 2018 Canadian Square and Round Dance Convention in London, Ontario, July 19, 20 & 21

“Make The Scene in 2018”








New club formed in Meridian Zone 2!

We welcome the Plamondon Valley Dancers to the Alberta Square & Round Dance Federation, Meridian Zone 2. Just recently formed, they dance weekly on Wednesdays from 7-9 pm in the Plamondon Rendezvous Centre in Plamondon, AB. Caller: Phil & Jo Sedgwick. We look forward to meeting these new members at the annual Meridian Zone 2 Spring Dance in Lloydminster on April 21, 2018. (Further info available in Featured Dances-Zone 2.)


Kensington Strollers and Can Tabs Project


Thank you, Kensington Strollers, for taking on such a terrific project! We often forget that such a tiny item can make such a huge difference.



This article was submitted by Audrey Eliasson.


For several years, I, along with your help, have been collecting can tabs. I deliver these to Lil and Tony who live in Castle Downs. They collect enough tabs to buy a motorized scooter for someone in need. This year’s recipient, selected by Easter Seals, was Elna, who lives at Shepherd’s Care Kensington. On October 1st she was presented with her brand new $3500 scooter.


It takes 1600 tabs to make one pound, and they receive 55-60¢/lb. It takes 9,133,328 tabs to buy one scooter, or 5708 lb.

This is a slow process but a very worthwhile cause; it literally takes years to get enough tabs to purchase a scooter. On behalf of the organizers, Lil & Tony, and Elna and seven previous recipients, Thank You for your support. Keep saving those tabs so more people in need can receive a scooter.

Thanks you,
Audrey Eliasson

Banner photos needed!


Attention Clubs, Callers & Cuers – Banners Needed! 

At every Convention the Banner Parade is a highlight with its wide variety of colourful and creative club, leader, and association banners. I would like to feature these banners on the website beside the club, or caller contact or association info. Callers and cuers, we consider your tablecloth to be a banner as well!

Please take a photo of your banner and email it to me: zwierschke@mcsnet.ca

Regular mail will work also:

Olive Zwierschke, Box 114, Holden, AB T0B 2C0

Hints for a good photo:

  1. Please ensure the four corners are held taut so there is minimal rippling.
  2. Make sure the camera is directly in front of the banner, and parallel to it, so that it actually looks rectangular, not trapezoidal.
  3. Don’t worry about backgrounds; I will be cropping out people who might be holding the banner. This is just a banner photo.



(Thanks to Claudia Littlefair for this information.)

The CSRDS Marketing Committee is actively developing online resources for clubs to use in promoting our activity. Quebec committee member, Rachelle Cournoyer, has spent countless hours compiling an extensive, user-friendly Pinterest page made up of 26 boards and 1500+ pins. The boards consist of dance images, articles, videos, promotional material, and general dance information. The content is continually increasing and being updated. Anyone can access these boards and use them for their own club’s promotions.

Ways you might use this information:

  • Looking for a good video? There are 34 of the very best. No need to spend hours looking on YouTube.
  • Looking for some good images to use for posters and promotional ads? There are 110+ pins to inspire you.
  • There’s a board on square dance promotions that groups the best posters and ideas.
  • Want more about the benefits of dancing? Check out the Dance Research board.

The Committee’s objective is that the Pinterest page be a one-stop shop with lots of practical information.

How does it work?

A pin is usually a picture that links to a page on the web. These pins are grouped into boards, so the effect is like a bulletin board with pictures on it. You would need to become a member of Pinterest in order to see the CSRDS board. Becoming a member is easy and free: go to www.pinterest.com and set up an account. Once you have your account in Pinterest, link to the CSRDS board: https://www.pinterest.com/canadiansquarea/. As you browse through the 26 boards, if you see an image you’d like to use on a poster, click on it and the image will come up on its own page, click “copy image” and “paste” it on your poster. If you’re using a Mac, once the image comes up on its own page, Control-click the image and choose your preferred method of saving it from the pop-up list.

Current List of Boards and Number of Pins

Advanced Square Dancing (3)

Callers & Music (26)

Clogging (47)

Contra (95)

Cued Ballroom Dancing (61)

Dance Motivation Memes (123)

Dance Research (65)

Dancing: Children & Teens (37)

Dancing: With Handicapped (13)

Great Websites (6)

History of Square Dance (94)

How To (27)

International Square Dancing (20)

New Dancers: Starting Out (8)

Newsletters (16)

Nostalgia (176)

Press: Square Dance (46)

Promotion (61)

Promotional Videos (34)

Provincial Associations (36)

Quirky Square Dancing (20)

Rainbow Dancing (13)

Square Dance Imagery (111)

Square Dance Memes (241)

20th National Convention (7)

Traditional Square Dance (79)

If you have content you would like added to the boards, email Rachelle: csrds.qc@gmail.com or Claudia: claudia.littlefair@gmail.com.