How to train somatic awareness, bodily communication and leadership in nurse education?
At first glance, dance and movement may appear foreign to the idea and tradition of nurse education. On closer inspec¬tion, it could be high time.
The flow of words may stop, but the body is always in movement – always communicating. The language of the body is the first and most essential language of the human being. In all human relationships the language of the body is both a universal and socially and personally toned mother tongue, which follows us throughout our lives. Thus, the language of the body is also of great importance for somatic- awareness, presence, contact, communication reading and leadership in nursing practice.
Still, the language of the body, and certainly movement, is an often overlooked potential in nurse education in spite of the often bodily close meetings with vulnerable and crisis-stricken patients.
This workshop builds on the practice-interventions, the methods and the results from several research projects about The Language of the Body in Professional Practice and Education. These examined how movement, dance and the senses may be used when training embodied professional competences. The projects have a wholeness oriented movement psychological and phenomenological approach and have been also been carried as “The Dancing Nurses Project” in a Nurse Education in Copenhagen. Results from the project have innovative educational potentials and have been implemented in the curriculum of several educations in Denmark.
The results also give concrete indi¬cations of how nursing educations can develop new holistic anchored embodied training in a very accessible, as well as essential, ancient and unavoidably present part of the nursing pro-fession.This workshop will be a reflexive, sense based and moving journey into the core elements of embodied professional competence. We will explore how simple and joyful elements from dance can intensify and train, somatic awareness, presence, trust, leadership and contactability. Both the research based theoretical concepts and the practical exercises can be used in both nurse education and professional nursing practices.
Dr. Helle Winther is an associate professor in dance and movement psychology, University of Copenhagen. Trained as a body and dance psychotherapist, her research and teaching is primarily focused at “The language of the body in professional practice” within this areas she has developed innovative potentials for nursing education together with nursing educators in Denmark. She has furthermore educated generations of university students and has taught numerous groups of professionals e.g. leaders, teachers, and doctors.Helle Winther has published six books and numerous research articles about her work. Her work is portrayed in Danish TV and in radio portraits. She has received three teaching prizes at the University of Copenhagen.