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Dance & Movement Therapy

DSC01938At Lava Heights Academy we use Dance and Expressive Movement as a powerful therapeutic tool in the treatment of troubled teens, both boys and girls. Dance, yoga, and expressive movement are used by our therapists to assist our students in regard to self-identity and social dysfunction.

We believe that creative expression through dance and movement help students to breakdown the barriers of a false self-identity, and at the same time learn appropriate social skills. Dance and movement can work therapeutically by connecting the student to his or her emotions through appropriate expression.

The therapeutic process of using dance and motion allows troubled teens to better understand their feelings and regulate their emotions. Thus, troubled teens learn to express their emotions appropriately through creative motion. At Lava Heights the dynamics of movement is taught through dance, but its not about technique. Although technique development is important, “dance therapy” has a deeper purpose; allowing expression as a powerful form of communicative expression.


IMG_6104The benefit of dance training allows the young person to experience emotions in non-threatening ways. Before, during, and after dance training our students process what they experienced. In this way troubled teens are more willing to talk about their feelings. One of the goals of dance is to promote prosocial skills, and dance can be used effectively to breakdown the walls between themselves and other people.

At Lava Heights dance is usually a group experience where students have partners or teammates. Students learn about themselves and each other through dance training; learning to use appropriate social skills and problem solving techniques as they learn about movement together.

Dance presents opportunities for self-discovery in a social setting


The Objective of Dance Therapy is to find true Self-Identity

IMG_1936The objective to Dance therapy is to help our students to find their true self-identity through an alternative means. Through dance and movement they are better able to develop self-awareness and an improved self-image. As with any therapy approach the goal is effective therapeutic intervention. Dance is powerful platform for self-expression that can lead to deeper understanding of oneself. Moreover, with dance there is less resistance to therapy. For some troubled teens dance is a more effective approach than traditional psychotherapy.

Dance therapy, or dance movement therapy, is an effectual therapeutic use for emotional, social, and behavioral improvement. As a form of creative arts therapy, dance therapy is founded on the premise that movement and emotion are related. At Lava Heights Academy the ultimate purpose of dance is to find struggling youth find a healthy balance and sense of wellbeing.

The benefits of dance/movement therapy as a therapeutic intervention are well-established. Dance therapy uses movement to further the emotional, cognitive, physical and social integration of the individual. Through movement, dance can help troubled teens learn appropriate ways of self-expression.

At Lava Heights we use Ballroom Dancing as a form of therapy. Ballroom dance is a type of dancing that requires coordination between two or more people – teamwork. Ballroom dancing is enjoyed both socially and competitively around the world, and kids really enjoy the social and competitive nature of Ballroom dancing. Thus, Ballroom dance is the perfect integrated form of creative arts therapy.

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