The Active Dance Programme is an initiative set up in 2012 by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown Sports Partnership and UCD Sports. The initiative is aimed at getting teenage girls more physically active. Dancing is becoming an increasingly popular form of exercise among younger people. As teenage girls are less active than teenage boys*, the Active Dance programme was formed from studies that found what sport teenage girls find the most enjoyable and fun to take part in. The 2015/2016 programme involves transition year students from 8 schools within the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County that over a 5 week period, with the help of a tutor, select a type of dance and build up their own routines.
At the end of the programme, the participating schools meet in UCD and perform an Active Dance Off. They also get the opportunity to try other forms of dance and learn about the importance of a healthy diet and regular physical activity. The students are encouraged to keep an activity diary for the duration of the programme in order to monitor their activity levels and record any improvements. This programme has proven effective at increasing teenage girls’ physical activity levels and their awareness of the importance of having a healthy lifestyle. This initiative has been made possible by funding from Sport Ireland and the HSE as part of the Get Ireland Active Programme.
* Irish Sports Monitor 2013 Annual Report