A work out for your brain? Listen to music.

Music reduces anxiety, blood pressure and pain, and can improve sleep quality, mental alertness, overall mood and memory.  It can also make us more productive, motivated and empowered.

We, at Heritage Woods in Belvidere, love music. Whether is it coming to us live from a performance or playing over the speakers in our dining room, it’s not uncommon to see us tapping our toes and nodding along. We love all kinds of music — country, jazz, oldies, Big Band and pop, just to name a few.

This year’s Supportive Living Week theme was “Never Stop Dancing” and what a great theme to incorporate our love of music. We had three live performances just in that one week.  We enjoyed the sounds of steel drums, and the voices of our local high school chorus, belting out Broadway show tunes.

Given the great benefits of music, it’s no surprise that Heritage Woods residents want to be part of the music making, too.

Not only do we have several great pianists residing in our community, but we now have our very own bell choir. This recently formed group is learning the basics of how to play the hand bells. We have a wonderful community volunteer, Elissa, who has been generous enough to give direction to our new choir.

We are looking forward to the holiday season when they are scheduled to debut the songs they have been working so hard to learn.