When you hear music playing, do you automatically find yourself swaying, toe tapping, or bursting into dance? Well, you’re not alone! Studies have shown that moving to the beat is built into our nervous systems. And for me, I feel like I have a deeper experience of the music I am listening to if I move along with it, and it makes me feel good!

Sometimes music and movement can even be used in a therapeutic health care setting. Music therapy is the evidence-based use of music for a therapeutic purpose. It can help promote relaxation, reduce depression and anxiety, and even help with pain management. Music and movement are a fun combination together and can be great ways to help relieve stress during tough times.

Sing and move to the beat led by Music Therapist Matt Lloyd, MT-BC, from the VA Central Iowa Health Care System, and movement demo by Alison Whitehead, Office of Patient Centered Care & Cultural Transformation. In this 17-minute virtual Music and Movement Group session, Matt combines both music and movement into a fun session – it’s hard not to start moving!

For more information on recreation therapy in VA, visit: https://www.prosthetics.va.gov/rectherapy/index.asp.

For more information and self-care through the Whole Health Components of Health and Well-Being, visit: https://www.va.gov/WHOLEHEALTH/circle-of-health/index.asp.

Alison M. Whitehead, MPH, is the program lead for the Integrative Health Coordinating Center in the VHA Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation.   

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