Dance of Awareness
Dance of Awareness™ (DoA) is a new approach to working with movement, dance and awareness, developed by Tim Brown and Clare Osbond. It has five main streams of influence: Neo-Reichian body-centred psychotherapy; Five Rhythms dance; Authentic Movement; Dance Movement Psychotherapy; and the experiential exploration of Awareness itself. It is a group movement practice that aims to increase self-awareness and self- acceptance. Practiced regularly it can be a resource for continuing wellbeing on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels. DoA has been growing since 2003, and is based on experience gained through over 1500 hours of DoA classes, groups and workshops.
The DoA cycle - sensing, grounding, expressing, releasing, connecting and completing - follows an energetic wave, charging and discharging over the course of a session. The cycle is based on psychodynamic theory and developmental psychology. The phases of the cycle follow themes of human development from pre-birth through to around five years. This is the time period associated with the growing sense of self which becomes embodied through early experience, and which sets the patterns for adulthood. This gives the mover the opportunity to re-experience their formative years of early development, explore old imprints, and discover new patterns of moving and relating.
Music is an important element of the process guiding the group through six sequential phases which together form a continuous wave of energy. The phases are:
Sensing the body directly – arriving into ‘being’ with an internal focus on physical sensation and an external focus on the five senses;
Grounding our bodies in relation to the earth and others, receiving support;
Expressing the shapes, patterns and movements that are ready to take form;
Releasing the energy that is ready to move in the body;
Connecting deeper into ourselves – and outwards with others and the world;
Completing the journey and returning to our true nature.
Throughout the process there is strong emphasis on body awareness which provides the ground for our experience.
Since 2013 we have been running a Dance of Awareness Foundation training programme which takes place over two weekends. Consequently there are a growing pool of practitioners in the UK and beyond who are offering their own DoA groups. You can find information about other DoA groups on Facebook here.
The DoA cycle was initially developed for large groups as a drop-in music-led process. For our work to move closer toward a therapeutic model, we decided to use the DoA model but without music and and as an ongoing group. The intention behind this was to create a much smaller, more boundaried, psychotherapeutic group format for a conscious exploration of early movement patterns. This group is called Free/Form.
To find out about our Dance of Awareness™ work; the training or our diary of events (including groups and workshops), click on the relevant button below.
You can find more detailed information about DoA and Free/Form from papers we have written that can be found on our Resources Page.
For information about forthcoming groups and classes that are currently happening, see the Diary Page.