Healthcare Perspectives - Movement Arts

Movement Arts are also known as “mind-body” exercise. Modern Movement Arts such as dance, Pilates and many other somatic modalities all share a common thread with the ancient mind-body sciences of Classical Yoga of India and Chinese Martial Arts practiced for thousands of years. Mind-body exercise, as defined by the International Dance and Exercise Association, is “physical exercise (or movement) executed with a profound inwardly-directed focus.” Movement Arts incorporate an inner focus as part of physical activity, based on the ancient idea that the mind, body and spirit are connected. Mind-body modalities or exercise typically include dynamic physical movement, creative expression, postural alignment and alignment with breath, relaxation, breathing exercises, and intentional self-awareness.

This “inward focus” means paying greater attention (mind) to what is being experienced through physical sensations and breath (body). Focused concentration as such leads to a well-spring of physiological and psychological benefits often attributed to many mind-body practices. Movement Arts not only contribute to many aspects of overall physical fitness—including muscular strength, aerobic capacity, flexibility and balance—they also facilitate an expanded engagement of the mind’s capacity for higher conscious potential.

Some well-know Movement Arts include:

  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi & Qi Kung
  • Modern Dance
  • Marital Arts- Karate, Brazilian Capoeira, Kung Fu and Jui Jitsu
  • Gyrotonic

With diligent practice most mind-body modalities and exercises produce a profound effect on all systems of the body by reducing tension, improving circulation, increasing flexibility and enhancing the ability to concentrate and develop a greater self awareness. By restoring proper circulation and relieving tension in the muscles, ligaments and tendons, the Movement Arts facilitates optimal functioning of the body, restoring health and maintaining the proper performance of all systems, organs and tissues. This physiological harmony leads to serenity of spirit, vitality and tranquility, and enhanced personal creativity and sense of purpose.

Healing Modalities within Movement Arts

  • Martial Arts
  • Western Movement Arts
  • Yoga Asana


There is no specific licensure for yoga, however yoga practitioners should have documented credentials or national certifications.

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