Welcome Humans and Dancers to a whole new approach to improving your wellbeing to maintain balance, joy, and enrichment in life as well as in your West Coast Swing!
Becoming the best dancer you can be is more than learning the skill and movements of the dance. It is about mindset, physical wellbeing, balance, expression, and connection to yourself and others on a deeper cognitive and emotional level.
The WCS Wellness crew formed from a passion of helping our dancers be the very best they can be and live life to the fullest. Dance is such a powerful way to connect with the world around us and to boost our mental health and wellbeing. We want to help you get the absolute most you can from it!
We have many wellness professionals already in our midst who know first-hand the incredible benefits and pitfalls the wonderful the world of dance and West Coast Swing has to offer. So we wanted to provide you a source of knowledge, connection, learning and grow. A starting point that is by the dance community and for the dance community.
This site is all about helping you live a happy healthy life full of joy, play, and connection regardless of your level of knowledge or experience in West Coast Swing. We believe that the content shared here and the services our Wellness Westies can offer you will benefit everyone – from the brand-new novice, the social dancer, to the seasoned Pro.
What is Wellness?
Wellness is a term that has been increasingly used in all walks of life over the past decade or so. There are many different definitions and interpretations of wellness and wellbeing that have sprung up in this time. For us it is a holistic and practical approach to finding balance within ourselves – mentally and physically.
Wellness involves a sense of empowerment to live a happy, healthy and fulfilled life. Empowerment goes hand-in-hand with taking personal responsibility for our day to day choices and our lives. Wellness and balance are defined by you, based on what you think is important and needed, as well as on your personal goals and values.
In short, wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life. It is more than being free from illness, it is a dynamic, flowing process of change and growth.
“…a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
– The World Health Organization
“Wellness is a conscious, self-directed and evolving process of achieving full potential.”
– The National Wellness Institute
The content on this site will explore many themes and niches within wellness but they will all be centred around the eight-dimensional model developed by University Health Service at University of Michigan in 2012 and verified by the National Wellness Institute, 2012.
This is a newer model based on the original six dimensions of wellness first credited to Dr. Bill Hettler in 1976.
The 8 dimensions of wellness we will be working with are (all are controlled by us but some sit soley internally);
Physical – nutrition, stretching, hydration, sleep etc.
Emotional – understanding your feelings and relationships, on and off the dance floor.
Mental – neuroscience and mindset.
Spiritual – finding meaning, purpose and connection (this can be separate to or linked with religious beliefs)
Environmental – how you relate to your environment and how it’s effect on you.
Social – know your support system and find satisfaction with the roles you play.
Financial – how to have a healthy relationship with money.
Occupational – finding job and career satisfaction/ fulfilment.
Whilst all elements are created equal, we have to admit there’s going to be a focus on the top six with particular detail on the Physical, Emotional, Mental aspects of this model. And we might as well own it now that there’s not going to be much on the financial or occupational elements to your wellbeing here.
We are dancers and we know where our focus is. That said, we will endeavour to cover these occasionally in a broader fashion from time to time and if you are seeking help with these areas please do reach out as we would be happy to refer you to other professionals and services that may be of use to you.
Swarbrick, Margaret & Yudof, Jay. (2017). Wellness in the 8 Dimensions. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/299127407_Wellness_in_the_8_Dimensions