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Dance Like a Star with Julianne Hough

Dance with Julianne:  Cardio Ballroom

“Dancing with the Stars” champion and country singer Julianne Hough has released a new fitness video called “Dance with Julianne: Cardio Ballroom”. The 55-minute DVD teaches both beginner and advanced dancers high-energy dances, including the cha-cha and the jive. Hough says she selected the moves for their ability to raise the heart rate and burn calories.

Julianne started dancing competitively at the age of nine at the Center Stage Performing Arts Studio in Orem, Utah. At fifteen, she became the youngest dancer, and the only American to win two Latin dance championships at the Blackpool Dance Festival in England. She won her first “Dancing with the Stars” competition on Season four, and repeated as winner in Season five.

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Ballroom dancing offers a fun way to workout. Dance is a weight-bearing activity which builds bones. Because ballroom dancing involves moving forward, backward, and sometimes sideways, dancers get the benefit of working hamstring and buttock muscles. Dancing can also improve balance and coordination.

Depending upon the step and intensity of the dance, ballroom dancing can burn anywhere from 250 to 400 calories an hour, about the same as a brisk half-hour walk on a treadmill.

Dancing may also offer some positive mental benefits. A study from the New England Journal of Medicine found that those who enjoyed dancing frequently had a lowered risk of developing dementia. The physical exercise increases blood flow to the brain and reduces stress, depression and loneliness.

The list price for Julianne Hough’s video, which was selected as Shape Magazine’s DVD of the Month for December 2009, is $14.98.