Dance mobility: a somatic and dance programme for older adults in New Zealand

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Journal Article

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Molloy, F., Keogh, J., Krampe, J., & Guzmán, A. (2015). Dance mobility: A somatic and dance programme for older adults in New Zealand. Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, 1-14.

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HERDC 2015 submission




Dance Mobilitye, a new community dance programme that follows a New Zealand partnership research project, designed for older adults with diverse motor skill levels and dance experiences. The programme includes high-functioning older adults, some with sensory or balance impairments and others with Parkinson’s disease. Wediscuss the benefits and challenges of facilitating a once-weekly dance practice model and the ways the programme affects individuals’ sensorial states of well-being and awareness. Somatic practices are introduced as integral to Dance Mobilitye teaching methods and dance activities. We include observations and comparisons with dance embodiment theories, cross-disciplinary goals of gerontology and exercise science/rehabilitation research to debate benefits and limitations of dance for older adults, and adaptive methods of the Dance Mobilitye approach. Somatic research is needed to build evidence-based conclusions that advance older adults’ feelings of well-being and safeguard their motivations to continue moving freely.

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This document has been peer reviewed.