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The effect of dance on the memory and proprioceptive ability of the elderly

High School
Redwood High School
Graduation Year
Student review
My mentor Adrian was amazing and helped me so much throughout the process. I learned so much about research and conducting an experiment.

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Project description

As people age, their memory and proprioceptive ability generally deteriorate, especially in their later years of life. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), episodic and longer term memory typically decline as one ages (APA Office on Aging and Committee on Aging, Vierck, n.d.). The APA also lists exercise as a way to improve forgetfulness. Dance is a form of exercise, which can, on its own, enhance one’s memory, however, by learning combinations (sequences of dance steps) and working the brain, dance can further improve memory and limit forgetfulness. Additionally, according to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, dance improves static balance (Stawicki, Wareńczak, & Lisiński, 2021). The study I conducted tests the effect of two months of dance on people of 60-80 years’ memory and proprioceptive ability. Participants in the study were taught combinations in a dance class for the two months, and various tests were performed over the span of the study, such as balance, limb control, and recall evaluations. These results over the months were compared to the participants’ baseline in order to study the effects of dance. My hypothesis was that due to the dance training, the people’s scores on recall, limb control, and balance tests will improve. It is important to actively attempt to find solutions or ways to improve the memory and proprioceptive ability of elderly people, as these are problems they encounter frequently. Dance poses a cost-effective and potentially enjoyable solution to commonly experienced problems as people age.

The effect of dance on the memory and proprioceptive ability of the elderly
Project outcome

Research Paper

PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate
Social Science, Psychology, Biology
Botany, ecology, developmental psychology, educational psychology, learning sciences
Mentor review

My mentor was extremely helpful. They were very responsive and were willing to look over my work anytime I asked.

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