Dance in Therapy – outpatients'group 

Grupa Tańca

Treatment by dance has been inspired by Rudolf Laban (1879-1958), who was famous for the fact; he had conducted modern dance in Europe.Laban analysed the way that people move their orientation in space and differentiation of movements dynamics. He acknowledged that movement helps to achieve harmony and that is why it is a therapeutical factor.

Choreotherapy was born in America in fifties. Mary Whitehouse noticed connection between the way students move and emotions, they wanted to express. Marian Chace observed that psychiatric patients with sense of isolation and misunderstanding could reduce these feelings thanks to possibility of expressing emotions, given them by dance. Dance gives to a man possibility of making contacts with his surrounding, when he is almost utterly devoided of it in connection with the run of disease.

The name of Junowa and her psychogimnastics was famous in 60`s and 70`s. Her method was based on work with movement and was realised through series of exercises and gymnastic - imaginary etudes. Nowadays choreotherapy in Europe is based on various, concrete dance techniques with elements of meditation, or on improvisation joined with movement derived from philosophy of the East. There come into being school of dance and they try to integrate different approaches.

In Poland Zofia Aleszko developed choreotherapy based on various techniques of dance, taking advantages from polish folk dance. Suitable sets of exercises are adapted to individual needs of patients.

I have ve been collecting my own experiences work with touched by schizophrenia for ten years. Some patients are awaiting only to be taught simple steps (social, modern dance or characteristic dance like flamenco etc.), for others it is difficult therapeutical process and its aim is:

   1. Acquirement ability of making interpersonal relationships

   2. Possibility of expression both negative and positive emotions.

   3. Increase of visual and motorial co-ordination.

   4. Acceptance of body, masculinity or femininity.

   5. Ability of concentration, relaxation and reflection.


Anna Wojciechowska

Grupa Tańca