98-year-old Bonita Springs woman stays young through love of dance

Reporter: Dannielle Garcia
Lola Jean Copeland, 98, dances with her instructor at Enchanted Ballroom. (CREDIT: WINK News)

A near centenarian gets her groove on.

After such a long life, Lola Jean Copeland’s memory isn’t what it used to be, but when she is dancing, she lives in the moment and loves what she does.

She may be 98 but don’t call Lola Jean old.

“I dance the way somebody would play cards. It’s a regular weekly thing,” she said. “I dance whenever I can because it’s more fun than exercising.”

From a slower waltz to a quick-paced foxtrot, at Lola Jean’s age remembering the dances and keeping active are all good things to help her memory and health.

“Move it or lose it,” Lola Jean said.

The dancing also jogs old memories.

“There were dances all the time during the war and the soldiers would come in for the dance,” she said.

Lola Jean’s dance teacher said she is his most spirited student.

“She’s having a blast by doing this dancing and she’s really dancing; it’s not just having fun, she’s really moving,” said Stefan Zhidkov, instructor and founder of Enchanted Ballroom in Bonita Springs. “She’s continuing to learn which I think is incredible.”

What’s the secret to her long life?

“I don’t know if it’s the dancing or the egg every morning,” Lola Jean said. “Or the beer every night!”

Studies show that dancing helps with cognitive function, heart health and stress reduction.

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