Sheffield Hallam and Manchester Metropolitan University Study

ST LUKE'S CLIFFORD HOUSE Partner dancing for people with an illness with no cure

Sheffield’s Hospice, St Luke’s are the first hospice in the UK to pilot using partner dancing as a physical and social activity for patients with or affected by an illness with no cure, within a hospice environment. The programme has been developed to take into account the limitations of patients with an incureable illness. The aim of the programme was to improve the physical activity and well-being of these patients and their partners.

To allow partners to participate, increasing the quality of life for the patient; allowing them to enjoy being in the moment together.

Coping with the physical and psychological changes associated with an incureable illness can be extremely difficult, but being physically active can help people cope better with these changes. Engaging in a fun activity will improve their physical, psychological and social well-being. The ‘Dancing for Health’ programme provides an opportunity to better support patients and their partners. 

The Dancing for Health programme was evaluated and researched by Sheffield Hallam University and Manchester Metropolitan University over a 40 week period. The evaluation used both quantitative and qualiative methods to assess the impact of our programme on physical and mental wellbeing and relationships. Participants fitted into three categories, patients, carers and the bereaved. The results of the study showed that eight weeks of Dancing for Health classes led to a reduction in perceived stress levels for all three categories, as well as improvements in physical wellbeing, mental wellbeing, social interactions and relationships. The bereaved group experienced the highest levels of perceived stress at the start of the programme but then showed the greatest reduction in perceived stress over the eight weeks of dancing. For the partners, there was an improvement in social functioning.

Read the full evaluation study here:

St Luke’s Evaluation Report
Evaluation Report of the Dancing for Health partner dance programme on patients with an illness with no cure.
Dancing for Health Report Sept 2019.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [1.2 MB]