Comparative Study

| Published: August 03, 2021

A Comparative Study of Appearance Anxiety and Self-Esteem Among Indian Classical Dancers and Non-Dancers

Sumana U N

Masters of Psychology, Mount Carmel College (Autonomous), Bangalore University, Bengaluru, India Google Scholar More about the auther


DOI: 10.25215/0903.020


India has a rich cultural heritage and more than thousand years of tradition of arts, classical and folk music and dance. Dance is considered as the medium of expression. It is the symbol of different cultural aspects of a civilization. Classical dance, in particular, is not just seen as an entertainment medium but it is considered as a form of meditation or yoga through which a dancer can reach the supreme Lord. It has a more spiritual rather a mere entertainment base.

Dance is a good form of exercise that burns calories and builds muscles along with the release of endorphins. Hence there is instant happiness that is experienced by the dancers. Dance also influences the mind by contributing to the experience of satisfaction. Everyday a dancer may not achieve a specific goal in the process but through dancing they feel they have worked towards their goal by practicing which gives them satisfaction. An article in Scientific American Magazine 2008, a Columbia University neuroscientist put forth the fact that brain’s reward centers are stimulated by music, sensory and motor circuits are activated by dance. Dancers benefit from the physical exercise, increased heart and lung capacities and the overall feeling of wellbeing which increases their self-esteem. Many studies have indicated that dance can increase confidence and self-esteem level of the dancer. On the other hand, dancers are believed to be concerned about body image and they constantly worry about becoming thin or putting on weight to look presentable on the stage. Concerns with body image will lead to low self-esteem of the dancers as they negatively evaluate their body shape. So, there are conflicting results regarding self-esteem. On one hand, dance increases self-esteem but on the other hand, the presence of appearance concerns decreases dancers’ self-esteem. Hence, the objective of this study was to understand the appearance anxiety and self-esteem among dancers specifically among Indian Classical dancers and also to understand the interaction between appearance anxiety and self-esteem. The study adopted a quasi-experimental between-groups research design where in training in Indian classical dance form was the quasi-independent variable and the group of dancers were compared to non-dancers on appearance anxiety and self-esteem. A sample of 65 participants was chosen. The sample consisted of 35 Indian classical dancers and 30 non-dancers between the age group 16-30 years. Sample was selected through the method of purposive sampling. Participants were then given the Appearance Anxiety Inventory (AAI) (Veale, D., Eshkevari, E., Kanakam, N., Ellison, N., Costa, A., & Werner, T., 2014) and Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale (Rosenberg, 1965). It was found that that there was a negative correlation between appearance anxiety and self-esteem which means higher the appearance anxiety lower is the self-esteem. Indian classical dancers and non-dancers did not differ significantly with respect to appearance anxiety and Self-esteem.

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ISSN 2348-5396

ISSN 2349-3429


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Published in   Volume 09, Issue 3, July- September, 2021