Dance Movement Therapy with Tripura Kashyap
The Indian Institute of Art and Design recently held a workshop on dance movement therapy with Tripura Kashyap, a choreographer and movement therapist. The central focus of the workshop was to enhance the students’ physical, emotional, mental and cognitive well-being as well as help them understand the ways in which the body moves. The students, through the exercise, experienced the flexibility of the body, an aspect that they need to keep in mind when conceptualising and designing garments. A psychotherapeutic exercise, dance movement therapy establishes a relationship between motion and emotion. The students under the guidance of Ms Kashyap not only comprehended the importance of being aware of their bodies and themselves but also had the chance to think, feel and express through their bodies. Apart from better understanding the fact that the body is a moving entity which needs to be observed closely in order to design clothes accordingly, the students also understood the inherent creativity behind such an exercise.
Ms. Kashyap’s dance movement therapy takes elements from Tai Chi – a Chinese martial art form which is practiced not only for self defence but also for meditation and other health benefits. Speaking about it, she told the students to “paint your energy and breath with tai chi movements and play with this creative energy”. She also stressed the vital importance of using dance as a medium for personal growth and development as well as internal and external balance.
Ms. Kashyap highlighted the fact that the exercise was not meant to urge the students to master any dance techniques but rather push them to explore the creativity that lies behind such movements, to aid their motor functions, monitor their breathing, increase focus and bring about a sense of calmness & relaxation and ultimately to understand body movements in order to design garments.