Date of Award
Master of Art in Dance/Movement Therapy and Counseling (MA)
Creative Arts Therapies
Alzheimer's disease, Marian Chace, Kestenberg Movement Profile
The purpose of this research was to explore the dance/movement therapy intervention of mirroring within a Chacian modality and its effects on creating, maintaining, and deepening a therapeutic relationship between two women who are living with Alzheimer’s and the researcher/facilitator, a dance/movement therapy intern. This research project was part of an internship at an adult day center for people living with Alzheimer’s. Six, half-hour, videotaped dance/movement therapy sessions were devoted to this thesis study.
The indicators, which exemplified that a therapeutic relationship was created, maintained, and deepened were changes in facial expressions and postural shifts. These indicators were noted through two forms of data collection and analysis. First, the researcher’s journal entries were written after each therapy session and were analyzed using content and conceptual analysis. Secondly, shape flow (see Appendix A), defined by Kestenberg as the growing and shrinking of the body in which expressions of feelings are communicated to self and others (Kestenberg Amighi, Loman, Lewis, & Sossin, 1999), was observed through video analysis and recorded on a movement coding sheet in response to the intervention of mirroring. Findings concluded that a relationship was created and maintained throughout the dance/movement therapy sessions as evidenced by three themes related to group cohesion, shared movement, and the expression of feelings. These themes correlated with growing shape flow as reflected in more open postures and brighter affects.
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Pierce-Knapp, Jennifer A., "Strengthening the Therapeutic Relationship Through Mirroring in a Dance/Movement Therapy Group for People with Alzheimer's Disease: A Descriptive Study" (2010). Creative Arts Therapies Theses. 15.