Aapka Sahara Foundation is proud to have hosted dance and sound therapy sessions for the betterment of senior citizens and their mental health. Over 50 events have been hosted in 10 cities all over India, from Mumbai to Kolhapur. ASF has always been driven towards engaging senior citizens in entertaining as well as beneficial exercises for their mental health. Sound and dance movement therapy is an incredibly innovative, expressive form of pro- social therapy.
Sound healing therapy uses aspects of music to improve physical and emotional health and well-being. The person being treated partakes in the experience with a trained practitioner. Music therapy may involve: listening to music, singing along to music, moving to the beat of the music, meditating and playing an instrument.
Dance therapy has numerous benefits. Our dance therapy sessions were coached by Dr. Vidisha Devnani, DMT Practitioner. Most people understand that dancing can be good for their health; it improves cardiovascular endurance, muscle tone, balance, and coordination. Dance can help boost a person’s mood, improve his or her body image, and provide an opportunity for fun that may lower overall stress and anxiety. While these elements are certainly beneficial, dance/ movement therapy takes therapeutic dance to another level. People in treatment with a qualified dance therapist have the right to confidentiality, and dance therapists provide a safe space for people to express themselves. Movement becomes 57 more than exercise—it becomes a language. People in treatment communicate conscious and unconscious feelings through dance, which allows a therapist to respond in kind. Dance therapists help people work on issues through the use of a “movement vocabulary” that is centered around physical expression instead of words. Dance/movement therapists assess body language, nonverbal behavior's, and emotional expressions.
Sound Therapy techniques vary but they all involve the application of sound waves and harmonic vibrations to the body through the use of instruments, including the human voice. Sound helps to facilitate shifts in our brainwave state by using entrainment. Entrainment synchronizes our fluctuating brainwaves by providing a stable frequency which the brainwave can attune to. 58 By using rhythm and frequency, we can entrain our brainwaves which then becomes possible down-shift our normal beta state (normal waking consciousness) to alpha (relaxed consciousness), and even reach theta (meditative state) and delta (sleep; where internal healing can occur). What does Sound Therapy treat? Sound therapy is used to treat symptoms of several conditions, including, anxiety disorders, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, dementia, autism spectrum disorder and learning difficulties, behavioural and psychiatric disorders and cancer. Some of the supposed benefits of Sound Therapy include lower stress, decreased mood swings, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, pain management, lower risk for coronary artery disease and stroke and better sleep.
Aapka Sahara Foundation has employed several means to achieve their end goal i.e., improving upon the mental status of senior citizens. Dance Movement Therapy is of those unconventional methods used by our Foundation. It provides an all-around improvement in physical and mental health. It improves muscle coordination, agility, strength & mobility physically, it helps alleviate stress, anxiety, depression and keeps the mind occupied which forms the basis of preventing any form of mental illness. It can be bolstered within any age group or number of people and allows people to uptake any form of creative expression without any judgment. Every individual expresses themselves differently and that must be respected, irrespective of age. It is carried out within a certain number of sessions with a broad base of objectives in mind which would help the individual gain the most out of these limited sessions.
This form of therapy pursues the following objectives 60 to be achieved during the course of the sessions :
Session 1 – Touching base with movements and expressions. The group was wanting to talk and interact with the facilitator. Singing, talking and movement were prominent.
Session 2 – Identifying and deciding the goals and kind of Movements.
Session 3 – Working on Coordination and Cross-Lateral Movements.
Session 4 – Working with beats on Co-ordination and Layers Movement.
Session 5 – Choosing a dance form that involves swaying, standing and stretching within it.
Session 6 – Doing Garba and other such physically exhilarating dance-forms.