Association of muscular strength and flexibility with select anthropometric markers of obesity: a study on adult bengalee kathak danseuses

SurjaniChatterjee., Neepa Banerjee., SatabdiBhattacharjee., TanayaSantra., AyanChatterjee., SandipanChatterjee and ShankarashisMukherjee

Strength and flexibility of select muscular groups are necessary for the healthy functioning of the body, without which an individual gets prone the physical inactivity related co-morbidities. But the present technology friendly lifestyle, offers a hindrance from achieving the optimum muscular flexibility, by reducing the work load from the muscles and indulging in a sedentary lifestyle. Hence, there is a growing recognition, to introduce physical activity which may positively influence the personal health. Therefore, to establish physical activity as a routine component of daily life that can be maintained without setting in boredom, dancing has emerged to be a popular choice. In this backdrop, the present study has been undertaken to assess the impact of Kathak dancing, a North Indian classical dance, on the strength and flexibility of certain muscle groups and find its association, if any, with select anthropometric markers of obesity. 43 adult female individuals, receiving Kathak dancing training for a minimum period of 6 years and practicing for at least one hour for 6 days a week, constituted the Kathak Dancing Group (KDG). The Control Group (CG) had 45 female individuals of comparable age and socioeconomic background but not receiving training in any form of dance or exercise. The muscular fitness was assessed using Kraus-Weber Tests, lower limb endurance was assessed by sit - and - stand test and the vertical jump height (cm) was also measured. Anthropometric assessments were adjudged in terms of WC, BAI and skinfold measurements. The results indicated that the Kathak danseuses have significantly (P < 0.05) favorable muscular fitness status compared to their age and sex matched counterparts; and there exist significant negative relationship (P < 0.05) between fitness parameters and the anthropometric markers of obesity.It may therefore be concluded that Kathak dancing is a beneficial way of exercising which may be implemented in programs, designed to effect lifestyle changes, for the betterment of health.

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