Seated Swing Project

Seated Swing Project 2 - May 2017

Seated Swing is a bespoke programme of seated dance workshops in care homes and day centres across Edinburgh. Each week, experienced dance teachers Chris Stuart-Wilson and Fiona Blair visit centres to teach fun, accessible classes that target motor and sequencing pathways in the brain, stimulating coordination and enhancing and developing cognitive function in older adults who have limited access to physical and social activity. From January to October, Dance Base delivers weekly dance workshops to up to 80 older people. The workshops are also supported by a fantastic group of volunteers.

The aim of Seated Swing is to help older people to increase their confidence and open them up to the joy of dance, as well as improving their health and wellbeing. Movements are tailored to the needs of individual participants, ensuring they get maximum benefit from the class. Some movements are simple while others involve more complex dance routines, using finger and arm movements, clapping routines, toe tapping and heel raising from seats. The classes are designed to be fun and energising for all, regardless of level, age or ability.

“Without exception all service users take part in the sessions and demonstrate a level of interest and participation the regular staff find impressive and hard to achieve in our own work.” Manager,  Eric Liddell Centre

Seated Swing with MECOPP at Dance BaseThe project takes place at Viewpoint Housing Association at North Merchiston Care Home, Eric Liddell Centre, Portlee Resource Centre in Leith, and with MECOPP (Minority Ethnic Carers of Older People Project) at Dance Base.

Seated Swing featured on Timeline, on BBC Two, in 2017 and the full episode was on the BBC iPlayer.



Seated Swing is supported by Awards for All, Christina Mary Hendrie Trust, The Nancie Massey Charitable Trust and is evaluated through the University of Edinburgh MSC Dance Science and Education Programme.


Nancie Massey Charitable Trust


To find out more about Seated Swing, contact Allan Irvine,

If you would like to support Seated Swing and the many other projects like it that Dance Base makes possible, please visit 

Seated Swing at Portlee Resource Centre Seated Swing at Portlee Resource Centre

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