The term ‘Movement Therapy’ can take on many different meanings. Broken down, the MBB Movement Therapy program uses the benefits of movement of the body as therapy. Our bodies want to move, plain and simple. Even when they’ve grown old, they want to move. To understand how movement benefits longevity in humans, we just have to look to nature. It benefits all living things by keeping the life-force flowing through them. The freedom in movement has the ability to completely shift energy for all human beings, including those suffering. Dance and yoga provide moments of peace when participants are able to forget about the hardships they face, whether war veterans, elders dealing with neurodegenerative disease or refugee children.
Movement Therapy stimulates participants physically, mentally, socially, cognitively as well as emotionally. Smiling is one of the easiest ways to release endorphins, our brain's feel-good neurotransmitters. Movement also releases them, helping to alleviate anxiety, a common symptom of PTSD and Alzheimer’s. Similar to morphine, endorphins act as an analgesic and sedative, diminishing our perception of pain. Physical capabilities of all participants can be integrated; as some may be wheel-chair bound, minimal movements can be used promoting creativity and personal expression. Every movement is connected to an emotion or memory. Sometimes gestures are positive; oftentimes they aren’t and that’s okay. It’s healthy to express frustrations, especially in such a peaceful, non-violent way, something participants may not have the chance to do otherwise. Touch is another component in Movement Therapy, which creates a release of oxytocin, creating intimacy, trust, and strengthening relationships. Some participants might not have physical contact with other human beings very often if at all. Serotonin is also on the list of happy hormones released in this type of work, flowing when we feel significant or important. In Movement Therapy, there are incredible moments of happiness when a memory is sparked or an emotion expressed without verbal communication, moments when a collective smile completely changes the energy of the room.
During the month of May, we have residency at RedSapata Tanzfabrik in Linz (Austria) where we are continuing this research.