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Ballet 'can keep elderly healthy'

Ballet can help tackle the challenges of an ageing population, according to those behind a ballet event in Edinburgh.

The Silver Swans dance class saw 29 dancers aged between 50 and 83 taking part in an initiative by the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and backed by Darcey Bussell.

It was the first in a series of planned Scottish sessions targeting older novice dancers, and also covering tap, chair-based dance and classic ballroom dancing.

RAD says Dance for Lifelong Wellbeing has been demonstrated to provide older people with physical and mental benefits.

Dr Anne Hogan, RAD's education director, added: "The RAD has seen an increasing demand for adult dance classes, with a 70% rise in new dancers in the past 12 months. This programme of new classes will open up opportunities to many novices who recognise the health benefits."

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