Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Differences Between Dance And Movement Based Treatment

By Joshua Reed

When an individual thinks of therapy, or a therapist, one generally pictures a psychiatrist or psychologist and a couch. Movement based treatment or dance therapy is a different and unique form. It is a form in which different styles of dance are used to enhance bodily emotional, intellectual and motor skills. Whether dancing at a free form community dance, or acquiring therapy, doing so often has the ability to heal body, mind and soul.

One aspect of dance therapy uses a correlation of preparation, evaluation, illumination and incubation. This correlation combines these four stages of treatment into one overall plan. Depending on the religious or spiritual aspects of clients, these type therapies have also been known to create a deeper connection to self, and if applicable, spirit.

Unlike free-form, non-alcohol, barefoot dance works to awake body, mind and soul in a community setting. Whereas, dance oriented therapies are provided in a clinical setting. Still, free-form dance is great exercise which can also help to alleviate stress among those in attendance. Depending on the spiritual beliefs of each mover, some may find a closer connection to self, others, spirit.

Originally developed thousands of years ago, dance and movement therapies have had a major impact on issues related to birth, death, happiness, sickness and health. In 1930, a new philosophy was born which helped establish these therapies in the United States, Europe and around the world. Then, once it became clear the effects had been proven, several colleges and universities began offering a focus on this area of psychotherapy.

Before being established as a valid form of psychotherapy, dance had always been seen primarily as an expressive form of art. Then, after more of these therapies were established in the 1950s, a number of professionals begin working in the field now known as dance therapy. While there are now programs focused on this type therapy, originally these therapies were provided by general psychologists and psychotherapists around the world.

These dance oriented therapies can be divided into two distinct waves. The first involves the use of dance as related to the medical community. Once a well known therapist noticed the effects movement had on clients, a larger field of movement therapy was formed. Once several clients had reported success in overcoming emotional and physical issues, more therapists started providing these type services.

Students began to report feelings of overall well being which attracted the attention of others in the medical field. A few doctors began sending clients to classes. It was not long after that a therapist would begin a movement based therapy program at a well known hospital in Washington D. C. It was at this hospital that a number of trials took place. These trials often showed some aspect toward positive change in the life of the individuals participating in various forms of dance therapy.

In the 1970s and 1980s, the second wave of dance appeared on the scene with a new and different ideology. It was at this time that therapists began to experiment and explore new and exciting applications. After which, therapists around the world began to create and apply different modalities and techniques of dance therapy based solely on the need of clients.

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