CHICAGO (CBS) — It’s a Friday morning at The Brookdale Senior Living Center in Lincoln Park.
About a dozen seniors gather for their weekly dance therapy program.
“We’re trying to work on that mind-body connection,” said Erica Hornthal, founder and CEO of Chicago Dance Therapy.
Hornthal’s background is in Geriatrics.
“As a therapist in training, I always wanted to go into private practice where we could create a group practice where all populations could get the benefits of movement and dance therapy,” she said.
Horthal started the company about five years ago. The practice focuses on movement and how it can help ease pain and stress of aging and illness.
“I quickly realized a lot of these facilities weren’t offering this kind of program,” she said.
Her two full time dance therapists travel to nursing homes, assisted living homes, day centers and community groups to work with all ages. They use a combination of music and expression through movement to dig deep into peoples’ problems and emotions.
“My youngest client is, to date, 2-3 years old. My oldest client was 107. We like to meet people where they are, what they need and use the creative arts, using movement, specifically to heal mental and physical issues,” Hornthal said.