Exploring if, and how, online dance classes support young people living with anxiety

In partnership with Dance Base, Scotland’s National Centre for Dance, we set out to explore if and how 8-weeks of online dance classes could support young people (aged 16-24) living with anxiety.

We were particularly interested in the participants’ sense of belonging and identification to an online group, so we carried out focus groups and one-on-one interviews which included creative methods, as well as collected reflective creative journals to explore subjective and cocreated experiences of the classes.

We also collected self-report surveys using validated measures of loneliness, anxiety, wellbeing, and group identity to track changes in the participants’ experiences and identify mechanisms linking group dance to potential changes in loneliness and anxiety.


The full paper is available here.

The preliminary qualitative findings have also been shared in a blog by Dr Katey Warran here.


UKRI Loneliness and Social Isolation in Mental Health Research Network

Programme area

Clinical trials and implementation science



Research Team

Dr Katey Warran, UCL (PI)

Dr Karen Mak, UCL

Saoirse Finn, UCL

Dr Laura Wright, University of Edinburgh