At home, Chubaw

It turns out that when you synchronize even a small movement, like the tapping of your finger, with another person, you feel more secure and connected to them than if you had done so otherwise. This prevents our brains from conflating us and them when we observe someone else performing the same action as us at the same time. Anyone who has ever rowed may be familiar with the sensation you get when your rowing team is precisely in rhythm with you. All of a sudden, you feel as though you are a part of something bigger than just yourself. We undoubtedly follow similar biological procedures to form social ties with other sociable species, such as monkeys and apes, which are supported by a number of hormones that encourage actions that promote social partnerships, or “friendships.” Endorphins, also known as the “happy chemicals” in the brain because of their energizing properties, are released as a result of exercise. They might also play a big chemical part in how humans and other primates connect together. In fact, it’s possible that endorphins and other bonding hormones are created during coordinated activities, making people feel more socially connected. We were curious to know how the synchronized and strenuous elements of dance would influence endorphin synthesis and social bonding. We used pain thresholds as a replacement for endorphin levels because they are difficult to measure directly.

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