The Open Floor therapist track is for licensed therapists and health professionals with experience of embodied movement practices who want to integrate movement and conscious dance into therapeutic settings in the work they do with individual clients and/or small groups.
- movement therapists
- music therapists
- drama therapists
- social workers
- mental health counselors
- body psychotherapists
- creative arts therapists (art, music, drama)
- other mental health professionals with a graduate level qualification
The Therapist Track of the Open Floor professional training is based on a dynamic methodology that integrates leading psychological concepts into an embodied movement vocabulary. The training is based on attachment theory, relational psychoanalysis, trauma studies, theories of sexuality, gestalt awareness practice, the understanding of multiple self‐states, and transpersonal approaches. As well as teaching you to deliver creative, inspiring sessions for people of all ages and abilities. In particular, you will learn to…
- Help clients to listen and track the sensations and impulses of their bodies.
- Find the possible meanings and significance of non-verbal experience and communication.
- Use the wisdom of their own physical experience in the therapeutic encounter.
- Track the cycles of activation and settling, pulsations, impulse, and other micro- movements that naturally occur in the client’s body during therapy sessions.
- Help clients move from talk therapy modalities into therapeutic movement explorations.
- Use specific tools that facilitate the client’s inner movements becoming more conscious and integrated.
- Integrate and balance a top down and bottom up approach to embodied processing.
- Expand insights into healing attachment wounds, helping clients resource through the body.
The Open Floor therapist training includes attendance at three core modules which are designed to build upon each other.
You will learn the basic elements of teaching Open Floor practice in Module 1, and then add layers of dimension and more advanced skills in Modules 2 and 3.
Modules 1 and 3 are taken together with trainees from our Movement Teacher
Training while Module 2 is tailored specifically to Therapy in Motion students. Therapy in Motion students can choose to attend Module 2 of the Movement Teacher Training at additional cost (see Course Content below for more information on each module).
Interim assignments, reading, peer support, mentoring sessions, self-study and teaching practice will keep you connected to the learning and to your fellow Therapy in Motion trainees in between modules.
- Using Core Movement Resources, which are natural to all human beings and bodies, regardless of age, experience, culture, ability or injury
- Creating teaching sessions using Open Floor movement anchors
- Structuring a class, from opening the floor to closing it
Three Core Modules
Residential training, which includes attendance at three ten-day core modules, to be taken in order over a period of 18–24 months.
Module 1: Common Ground
Module 2: Therapy in Motion
Module 3: Common Good
Optional Module: Common Sense
Twelve to fifteen hours of individual and small group sessions with a designated mentor. Your mentor will support you to develop your skills, as well as supervising your personalized learning plan and assignments.
Six additional days of Open Floor study, planned with your mentor, according to your skills and interests. You will find all the workshops and on-going groups that count towards elective study in our calendar.
You will be required to complete practice classes/sessions, reading and music research assignments in between each training module.
Module 1 – Common Ground
Learn the basic skills you need to teach deep and engaging movement sessions. This includes learning how to:
- Build musical skills, both technical and energetic
- Create evocative soundscapes
- Mix and match movement exercises in the moment
- Move and include all aspects of embodiment: the physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual experiences that arise on every dance floor whenever people move
Module 1 – Therapy In Motion
Now we add more flesh to the bones and bring depth and complexity, with special focus on how to:
- Grow your skills, as both teacher and student, in emotional intelligence, mindfulness and spiritual awareness on the dance floor
- Create movement scores that touch our essential human hungers for solitude, connection, belonging and spirit
- Combine Open Floor tools to create more elaborate movement sessions • Integrate imagination, imagery and metaphor
- Practice teaching with in-the-moment coaching
Module 3 – Common Good
Here we take what we know and what we’re still learning and make it an offering for others. This is about being skillful as we meet the world as a teacher, and includes:
- How to incorporate movement of the mind (thoughts, beliefs, imagination, etc.) in your teaching
- Movement as meditation
- Movement as a gateway to soul and spirit
- Knowing your teaching style: how to make it your strength and how to stretch beyond it
- Building quality relations with individual students, colleagues and the community at large
- Navigating the most common group dynamics a teacher encounters on the dance floor (resistance, power, sexuality)
- One-on-one live coaching as you practice your teaching skills
- Debriefing your teaching experiences and getting individual coaching (difficult students and situations, creative challenges)
- Building fluid authority and presence as you hold an unpredictable and wildly moving field
(These are subject to change.)
- Graduate of a Masters level program with at least three years or 300 hours of supervised practice
- At least 125 hours of Open Floor Movement study, including one Ground Floor Lab (= 30 hours)
- Strongly recommended: at least 25 hours of Open Floor study with Kathy, Lori or Andrea.
- Any Open Floor Encounter workshop (counts towards your 125 Open Floor prerequisites)
- An additional 200 hours of study in any accepted movement modalities, for a total of 330 hours of movement.
- One Libido Fundamentals (any Libido Fundamentals workshop, regardless of when you took it, fulfills this prerequisite)
- 30 hours of mindfulness training and/or practice
- Strongly recommended but not required: study in emotional intelligence, non-violent communication, conflict resolution, cultivation of compassion or forgiveness
- Teacher references
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