Maureen Cheong

University of Winchester Staff profilesI like to write about dancing. More recently my interest lies in dance in the community and the power it has to influence and enhance people’s lives. As a population we are living longer and generally staying healthier. Older people are looking for ways to spend leisure time that involves exercise and creativity. This will at times take people outside their comfort zone, but the reward and satisfaction of completing something they never thought they could inspires me to write about it and share the experience. Hopefully, encouraging to those who wrongly think they are too old to learn to dance.

I enjoy the research, whether it is first hand from my own experience of teaching dance in the community or reading other researcher’s theoretical findings. Recently there has been very interesting research into the real benefits of dance for people with Parkinson’s disease. It is currently being measured in a scientific setting with the aim of proving that dance can physically alter the mobility of someone with this cruel illness.

Writing at the kitchen table is best for me. I can spread myself over one of the few surfaces in my house that isn’t cluttered with stuff – with the exception of meal times of course. It also allows me the space to get up and pirouette around the room if I need a break!

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