Dance Movement Therapy

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Dance Movement Therapy

Dance Movement Therapy

“Dance Movement Therapy deals with the experience of "sense movement and the movement direction”.



By moving the psyche through dance, addressed in its creative dimension of play and improvisation, dance therapy takes into account the potential of the whole person. This paper examines Dance movement therapy which comes from modern dance and it focuses on the experience of dance and movement quality as a mediator of the relationship to oneself and the world. The place of dance in the therapeutic relationship opens on very diverse application fields: psychology, social care, personal development and dance therapy may relate to different audiences (McCormack, 2003). The Dance-Movement Therapy is defined as the psychotherapeutic use of movement in a process that promotes the individual psychophysical integration. Dance Movement Therapy is a profession that has evolved from the interplay and synthesis of dance art and science of psychology. Therapeutic aims of the individual psychophysical integration based on the methodological basis of psychotherapy. It works with the body and manifests the same language: the body as a connection to the world and the movement as a means of communication. The movement, motor actions, and dances are the means of intervention and the tool of observation, analysis and evaluation in Dance Movement Therapy.


Dance Movement Therapy is a discipline that is growing and has more than ten graduate programs in the United States and more than seven in Europe. Its principles are found in the United States in the forties where it emerges gradually in two career fields: Psychology and Modern Dance (Payne, 2000). One of its most important pioneer was Marian Chace, In the fifties, Mary Whitehouse of American origin, trained in modern dance in Europe and combining the teaching of creative dance and his studies on the theoretical framework proposed by Jung began to see the connection that existed between the expression in the spontaneous movement and genuine students and the flow of symbolic material that was shared at the end of those classes. This gave rise to what is now known as "Authentic Movement".

More important figures throughout history have been providing knowledge with their years of dedication to research in the field of movement, non-verbal communication, dance and the creative process. Judith Kestenberg developed a complete theory psychophysical perspective on the different stages of development that occur in the individual. Rudolf Laban discovered as the movement can be used as means of expression of thoughts, emotions and conflicts both conscious and unconscious, and by 1970, along with Warren Lamb, developed a theoretical framework called "Laban Movement Analysis" LMA (Laban Analysis Method Body). This framework describes the quality of changes in movement and ability to adapt in space. So, Dance Movement Therapy used the movement to integrate the individual physically and mentally, providing a structure through which the different ways to address the emotions, behaviors and conflicts (non-verbal and / or verbal) give way to a unique and inclusive of treating the individual (North, 1990). In other countries in Europe and Latin ...