a training manual to learn better nonverbal communication skills with people with neurocognitive disorders
Dance for Connection is thrilled to announce the publication and availability of the training manual, The Dance of Interaction: An Embodied Approach to Nonverbal Communication Training for Caregivers of People with Dementia, co-authored with Dr. Meg Chang.
Dance/movement psychotherapist Dr. Richard Coaten had this to say about the manual:
“This book has the potential for changing the culture of dementia care in the USA for the better, impacting on residents and staff in care homes and day centres as well as policy makers. For too long, scant attention has been paid to the importance of non-verbal and embodied communications where cognition, speech, behaviour and more are impaired. It makes good sense to ‘go by way of the body’ in such circumstances. This book is the first in the world to articulate why, how and in what ways embodied practices including movement and dance can be skillfully used for the benefit of all involved in the care of people with dementia.”
~ Dr Richard Coaten, Churchill Fellow 2010, South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
This training manual is based on a 20-hour curriculum piloted in 2010 to 33 trainees, including nursing assistants, nurses, a social worker and social work intern, activity personnel and program director, family members, and friends in a southern New Jersey continuum of care community. As a result of the training, caregivers became more flexible in their interactions with the individuals in their care, more skilled at observing, more empathic, and better able to distance themselves emotionally during crises, all of which resulted in greater effectiveness, more self-confidence, and most importantly, more harmonious relationships.
The training was subsequently offered to dance/movement therapists at Kinections in Rochester, NY along with briefer trainings on a number of occasions.
Now, thanks to Dr. Chang’s vision, the curriculum has been transformed into a manual so that other dance/movement therapists, psychologically oriented dancers, body-mind practitioners, and care providers with significant experience in both embodied practices and dementia, can train others, particularly if they have undergone the training themselves.
You can order yours here.