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Dance Therapy

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Dance Therapy

Dancing can be interpreted in different ways to many people and it is a subject that most every individual can relate to. One person may partake in extensive dance training, another may enjoy a more social type of dance setting, and one may use it as part of their spiritual or religious beliefs. Though they are all very different styles, they all have an obvious common ground; body motion. While that is true, there are many other aspects that are involved in dancing that people cannot visually see. Whether or not people notice, their physical reactions to daily occurrences in life reflect a similar dance like movement. For instance, when one gets excited over something such as a sports game, their body tends to do what most people refer to as a "victory dance." This is just one aspect that shows how a physical movement may be a way of describing emotions in the body that cannot be expressed in words. Dance therapy is the therapeutic use of movement to improve the mental and physical well being of a person. It focuses on the connection between the mind and body to promote health and healing (.

In early tribal times, primitive men used dancing to express most all of his inner emotions. Whether it was mourning for the dead, healing their bodies from sickness or praising their gods, movement became the essential tool needed to communicate these ideas. It has been declared that in the medicine dances of primitive tribes, one would lose all contact with the physical world and be completely consumed by the motion which would send him into a state of elation or exhilaration. According to Sachs, he believes this idea to be true. "He ascends to the spirits who threaten the well-being of man and struggles with them, until they give up and release their victim. The medicine dance is his most direct medium of expression." (Sachs)



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