how to become a dance therapist

dance/movement therapists use movement to approach a patient’s health holistically, working with populations as diverse as teenagers dealing with anxiety, veterans suffering from trauma and elderly patients with dementia or alzheimer’s. the american dance therapy association defines dance/movement therapy as “the psychotherapeutic use of movement to promote emotional, social, cognitive, and physical integration of the individual.” dance therapists can work in private practice, nursing homes, schools, hospitals, rehabilitation centers and other environments, where they combine the work of a traditional therapist with a deep knowledge of the body and how movement is connected to our overall health. studying dance therapy in undergrad is by no means a requirement for pursuing it in in graduate school; beardall says the majority of her students majored in dance and minored in psychology, or vice versa. “it’s important to explore if that’s something they want to pursue for the rest of their lives.”

erica hornthal, founder of chicago dance therapy, suggests undergraduates talk to a dmt or try to shadow one. sometimes patients dance to “have someone witness what they want to express,” says hornthal; other times sessions are sedentary, with the dmt trying to connect a patient’s experience to their breath or their posture. instead of seeing a doctor irl, telehealth allows you to connect with a medical provider online. since the outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic, many physicians have expanded their telehealth practices so they can safely get in touch with patients sans contact. “if the world was a bunch of people sitting in a room, and you raise your hand, then you better have something interesting to say,” says our february cover star @rajafeatherkelly.

dance/movement therapists use movement to approach a patient’s health holistically, working with entry level dance/movement therapists have completed 750+ hours of supervised clinical practice. board certification is earned upon completion of 4,000 hours of supervised clinical work, 48 hours of clinical supervision and acceptance of a theoretical framework by the dance/movement therapy certification board. complete a master’s degree program focused on human services. you do not need a master’s degree that is specifically focused on dance movement therapy to become a dance movement therapist. however, you do need a master’s degree that is related to the field in some way., dance therapist salary, dance therapist salary, dance therapy, dance therapy certification, how to become a dance physical therapist.

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