Dance and Movement

Table of Contents:

Visit to learn more about the requirements to becoming a registered dance and movement therapist from the American Dance Therapy Association.

These techniques use many forms of body movement: dance, exercise, martial arts, self-defense, yoga, walking, treadmill, boxing, and stillness. Because they may require more space than a typical office, these may take place in outdoor or open settings, so staying aware of confidentiality is essential. When people feel chronic emotions, such as anger or fear, they experience physical ailments and chronic pain from muscle tension, and without awareness of body needs, you cannot care for the body (van der Kolk, 2014). Movement can be powerful to incorporate in therapeutic work because it utilizes both sides of the body and the brain.

Basic Supplies

  • • Indoor space that is large enough for movement
  • • Outdoor spaces
  • • Sporting goods - yoga mats, boxing gloves, balls of various sizes, resistance bands, weighted blankets, etc.
  • • Exercise machines
  • • First aid kit.


Music can be incorporated as background sound or as the creative expression, from beats to melodies to song writing. Music can be generated by the client or incorporated by listening to playlists or specifically selected music. Like many of the expressive arts, music can be combined with other expressive arts, such as writing, or layered with other expressive arts, such as listening to meaningful song while creating a sand tray.

Visit www.musictherapy. org/about/requirements/ to learn more about certification through the American Music Therapy Association.

Basic Supplies

  • • Electronics - radio, phone, computer, tablet, speakers, etc.
  • • Instruments - guitar, keyboard, bongos, synthesizer, xylophone, tambourine, bells, etc.
  • • Editing Software - Garage Band, Audacity or other mixing software
  • • Writing materials - blank paper or sheet music, writing instruments
  • • Internet access - to look up songs and lyrics.


To learn more about training and credentialing in art and photo therapy visit http://

Photography techniques can use physical or digital photographs, and you now have more options than ever. Photographic therapy is usually classified under art therapy, so it can easily be incorporated with other visual arts. However, since digital photography is so easily and inexpensively accessible, we have chosen to categorize photography separately from art. Physical photos can be cut and shaped into a collage or arranged in a timeline, but this can also be arranged and edited electronically with digital photos. Clients can take pictures on their phones anywhere and as often as needed to show you their perception of their world or diagnosis. Alternately, they can find images online that capture how they feel. With easily accessible software, digital images can be manipulated to distort or change the photo. This expressive art could also include videos.

Basic Supplies

  • • Photo or video capturing tools - camera, phone, or other device
  • • Photos - print or digital
  • • Photo editing - software, photo pens, scissors
  • • Photo collecting/ coilaging - timelines, collages, other ways to assemble photos
  • • Scrapbooking supplies.


Sand Play has an extensive credentialing process, including personal work.

Learn more at: www.


As of this printing, there is no national credentialing for sand tray.

The differences between sand tray and sand play exceed the scope of this book, but both will require further training to ethically use these techniques. The general idea is that sand provides an earthy medium for clients to create or project their world. Miniatures offer many three-dimensional possibilities for clients to use as tools, and they can be quickly and easily moved around.

Basic Supplies

  • • Sand - plain, colored, kinetic
  • • Sand tray - rectangular, other shapes
  • • Tools - smoothing, raking, scooping
  • • Miniatures - people, animals, nature objects, barriers, bridges, elements (water, fire), escape vehicles, metaphoric representations, sacred symbols, mythical creatures, soldiers, weapons etc.


Writing techniques can be done digitally or with physical paper. Digital is often more convenient, especially for homework, but writing by hand may feel more organic and accessible. Digital may seem more private, since it can be password protected, but handwritten prose can curl around the page. The work done is more important than the medium chosen. You might even strategically mix the two forms.

Basic Supplies

Creative Application

Consider your ideal therapeutic space. Create a sketch of what you would like it to look like. How will the furniture be arranged? What supplies would you like to have, and how will you store them? What color scheme would you like? How will you incorporate sound? What material would the floor be? What would you like to convey from the environmental space?

You might want to use an online program like Roomstyler to help.

  • • Computer or device
  • • Thesaurus and rhyming dictionary
  • • Paper - different textures, colors, and sizes
  • • Writing implements - different kinds
  • • Journal or notebook
  • • Magnetic words
  • • Dry erase board and markers/ chalkboard and chalk.


Breen, D. T., & Daigneault, S. D. (1998). The use of play therapy with adolescents in high school. International Journal of Play Therapy,

7(1), 25-47. doi:10.1037/h0089417 Gladding, S. (2016). The creative arts in counseling (5th ed.) Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association.

Glaveanu, V. P. (2013). Creativity and folk art: A study of creative action in traditional craft. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 7(2), 140-154. https://doi. org/10.103 7 / a0029318.supp

Landreth, G. L. (2012). Play therapy: The art of the relationship (3rd ed.) New York: Routledge. Peleg, M., Lev-Wiesel, R., & Yaniv, D. (2014). Reconstruction of self-identity of Holocaust child survivors who participated in "Testimony Theater.” Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy, 6(4), 411-419. https:/ / 10.1037/a0033834 Rogers, N. (2013). Person-centred expressive arts therapy: Connecting body, mind and spirit. In M. Cooper, M. O’Hara, P. F. Schmid, A. C. Bohart, M. Cooper, M. O’Hara, P. F. Schmid, & A. C. Bohart (Eds.), The handbook of person-centred psychotherapy and counselling (2nd ed., pp. 237-247). New York: Palgrave Macmillan, van der Kolk, B. A. (2014). The body keeps the score: Brain, mind, and body in the healing of trauma. London: Viking Penguin.

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