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Is dance a sport or an art?

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I have been dancing since I was 14 years old, when my best friend dragged me to an after-school dance class. I enjoyed that dance class so much that I have been dancing ever since. After every dance class, however, I always have to stretch out my legs and back, as dancing can be quite a tough workout! It feels like as much exercise as a contact sport or going to the gym – but dancing is not widely considered to be a sport. Does the fact that dancing is expressive and artistic mean that it is not a sport?

Many dancers would argue that dancing is a sport, as it requires great physical stamina, strong muscles and impressive flexibility. No matter what style of dance you are participating in, you will always be using all of your muscles while dancing and this can often be for several hours a day. Additionally, in the more traditional dance styles (such as ballet and contemporary dance), men often lift their female dance partners way up in the air. The strength that dancers need means that they are often just as athletic as footballers, runners or swimmers.

On the other hand, many people argue that dance is an art form. Dances often exhibit emotion, portray characters and tell stories. Dancing to music is creative and visually appealing to the eyes and ears, just like watching a play or a professional orchestra. The glittery costumes, the stage make-up and the big hairstyles are artistic and imaginative. It is easy to see why many people consider dance to be an art form. 

I personally believe that dance is both a sport and an art. I believe that a great dancer will be a mixture of an athlete and an artist. You could have the strongest muscles in the world but not necessarily be a great dancer. Likewise, you could be a great actress who can portray emotions easily but you still might not be able to dance.

However, whether you consider dance to be an art or a sport, the important thing is to enjoy it! Dancing is a great way to make new friends and it's a really fun way to exercise!

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Have you ever been to a dance class? Do you think dance is a sport, an art or a bit of both?