Argentinian Tango courses for individuals with Parkinson’s disease appear to improve stability and increase mobility whilst reducing body fatigue, anxiety, shame and frustration as well as bringing about greater self-confidence and self-assurance

In January 2020 researchers from Germany published the results of their study to assess the effect of the Argentinian Tango on individuals with Parkinson’s disease. The researchers stated it is known that activities like dancing are beneficial to individuals with Parkinson’s disease regarding mobility, balance and body perception. A total of 12 individuals with Parkinson’s disease and their dance partners taking part in Argentinian Tango courses specifically for individuals with Parkinson’s disease were involved in the study. Based on the number of Argentinian Tango classes attended the individuals were assessed to be beginners (less than 10 hours) or advanced (more than 10 hours). Further variance was due to different age groups and duration of the Parkinson’s disease. Information on body experiences, ie body awareness, motor symptoms and movement, general feelings, body sensations and feelings related to their medical condition, was collected via interview. Results showed that the individuals felt that the Argentinian Tango course had brought about a shift in body awareness and in addition had improved stability, walking safety, enhanced mobility and an improvement in gestures and facial expressions. In general, the individuals described reduced body fatigue, anxiety, shame and frustration and an increase in joy, pride, curiosity as well as a reinforcement of partnership. In addition there appeared to be a greater acceptance of the medical condition, as well as greater self-confidence and self-assurance. Dance partners confirmed the perceptions of the dancers with Parkinson’s Disease. The researchers concluded that the perceived effects of Argentinian Tango courses may be linked to a positive body awareness and body control which may be related to improved motor symptoms, social and everyday life.

Beerenbrock Y et al. Perceived Effects of Tango Argentino on Body Experience in Persons With Parkinson’s Disease (PD)-A Qualitative Study With Affected Persons and Their Partners. Complement Ther Med. 2020 Jan;48:102221.

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