Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Carla M. Velázquez-García


With a high prevalence of non-medication compliance in individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia and a wide range of side effects from administered antipsychotics, it is imperative that the field of dance/movement therapy advocates for the implementation of dance/movement therapy in the treatment for this population. This literature review addressed the gap in dance/movement therapy research on the use of dance/movement therapy to reduce antipsychotic medication side effects and increase medication compliance. The multiple challenges faced by individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia were explored such as, stigmatization, the wide range of possible symptoms, poor insight, and movement dysfunctions. Side effects affecting cognitive, behavioral, and emotional functioning were also clarified. In addition, literature on the therapeutic relationship between dance/movement therapist and patient, body awareness, mind and body connection, physical activity, self-expression, and many other dance/movement therapy techniques were examined, followed by a review of dance/movement therapy literature with individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia. Dance/movement therapy has the potential to increase bodily awareness by providing the individual with insight into their medication side effects and reduce debilitating medication effects on cognitive, behavioral, and emotional functioning. Although limited research includes dance/movement therapy as a complementary form of treatment to increase medication compliance in individual diagnosed with schizophrenia, dance/movement therapy has shown to improve cognitive, behavioral, and emotional functioning in a variety of ways.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.




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