For many teenagers, adolescence is characterized by a roller coaster of emotions.
They wonder, make judgmental errors, seek for a meaning in their existence as individuals and question social limits.
Moreover, corporal changes at this time are so important which may threaten their self-esteem.
Dance Movement Therapy takes into account corporal changes, emotional waves as well as the need for coaching and communication with an adult that is not one of their parents.
It helps a teenager develop his/her intuition as well as emotional world, so that decisions that he/she chooses are healthy.
This kind of therapy considers an individual as a whole and can represent a genuine salvation for teenagers and their families..
Dance movement therapy integrates emotions with corporal experience, that enables the youth to raise awareness about him/herself and his/her potential.
The therapist’s neutrality towards the adolescent’s daily life allows him/her to ask questions related to the body and the intimity, to express his/her confusion and fears, in a dedicated framework.
The therapeutic space offers tools to contain the youth’s chaotic world and to reduce indirectly any defensive behavior.
Through the movement energy, repressed emotions, sometimes overwhelming, can be freed under different forms.
Rhythm and dance help modify radical behaviors, whereas verbalization allows implicit conflicts to be contained.
Working with body and movement provides tools for:
- Learning to understand messages sent by the body and their meaning.
- Conflicts are overcome by linking behavior to emotions and their related images.
- Techniques are taught to deal with the outside world, its social duties and requirements
Three frameworks are offered in teen therapy :
- Individual therapy focusing on the therapist-youth counselling.
- Group therapy where several teenagers who may suffer from similar problems work together.
- Family therapy is a space for youth, parents, and sometimes siblings to deal with family. problems.
We use several tools for this learning process.
- The body in motion helps balance the different parts of the brain and perception
- Relaxation and breathing exercises teach how to control impulsive behaviors
- The verbalization of physical sensations enables a greater self-understanding
- Movement work generates a positive relation with one’s body
- Notions of rhythm and space help define one’s position in a social context
Dance Movement Therapy encourages teenagers to establish a mature dialogue with his/her body, emotions, thoughts as well as socially.
The corporal approach, the dialogue health oriented particularly, helps to keep restrained unhealthy behaviors at bay.
Dance and Movement practice goes hand in hand with an improved body image perception which is directly correlated with self-esteem.
Guided visualisation helps youth plan for the future and teaches how to take responsibility for his/her actions and choices.
This art of therapy can also be relevant in case of depression, mood disorder, anger, family relationship issues, social and sexual questioning.
Benefits of the Dance Movement Therapy for adolescents
They are numerous!
Among them, let us mention the following:
Dance Movement Therapy prepares young people for an independent life.
It supports them and gives them the emotional tools to find their place towards their parents and the society.
It accompanies them in their emotional life and sexual development into adulthood.