The University of Hong Kong published a study in which 22 cancer patients between the ages of 39 to 69 were recruited from Hong Kong, China. These participants were suffering from many different forms of cancer that included breast cancer, colon cancer, leukemia, lymphoma, and nasopharyngeal carcinoma. The patients were placed into an environment where they could exercise through dance, were tested using a stress scale, self-esteem scale, and evaluated at completion of all tasks. Results showed that after participating in dance movement therapy, there was a significant reduction in their stress levels stemming from the cancer diagnosis, a positive change in overall self-esteem, and happier and healthier individuals. The interaction between mind and body was important since cancer traumatizes the body from the diagnostic stage all the way to the treatment phase (Ho, 2005). The program was relatively short, which allowed them a “trial” run to show how effective dancing can be on their overall well-being (Ho, 2005).
Ho, R. (2005). Effects of dance movement therapy on Chinese cancer patients: A pilot study in Hong Kong. Arts in psychotherapy, 32, 337-345.