Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Dr. Kelvin Ramirez


Substance use disorder (SUD) affects 1 in 12 Americans aged 12 or older and brings with it devastating consequences to the individual, their family, and society as a whole (SAMHSA, 2016). Considered a chronic disease, over 85% of individuals in recovery from SUD relapse within their first year of sobriety (Sinha, 2011). Poor emotional regulation and stress tolerance are noted among the highest predictors of relapse (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2020; Sinha, 2011). It is essential that these skills, termed “emotional sobriety”, be an integral element in the treatment process for those suffering from substance use disorder. This study explored the combination of dance/movement and yoga therapy, with their shared emphasis on interoception and self-awareness and their unique contributions of expression and regulation, to provide an effective intervention in addressing emotional sobriety in substance abuse treatment. The intervention was carried out at a residential treatment facility for adults with SUD over the course of two sessions. Results showed promising psychological and physical shifts within the participants and supports the validity of further research into the combination of dance/movement and yoga therapy for emotional sobriety.

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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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