As a physical activity and a creative art form, dance can make a vital contribution to the healthy-living agenda.
It has the capacity to provide an active, non-competitive form of exercise that can positively affect physical health and psychological wellbeing across different populations in the community.
Trinity Laban has been involved in a number of research projects in recent years which have sought to measure the impact of dance and arts within community settings.
Dance for Health Across the Lifecourse
This project was funded by the University of Exeter Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health, led by researchers from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, University of Exeter and Dance in Devon.
While there is some agreement within the field on the evidence of the positive benefits of dance, this research project considered the distinctive aesthetic, artistic and creative contributions that dance can make to health and wellbeing and what are the range of methodologies that can capture them best.
The project culminated in a systematic literature review (under review) that synthesizes understandings of the aesthetic, artistic and creative contributions that Dance makes to Health and Wellbeing across the lifecourse, a series of workshops with key practitioners to consider the pertinent issues around this topic and a symposium with known researchers in the field (Nikki Crane Associates and Programme Lead, Arts Health & Wellbeing King’s College London), Fergus Early OBE (Artistic Director, Green Candle Dance Company) and Dr Sarah Houston (Deputy Head, School of Arts, University of Roehampton).
Visit the University of Exeter website for more information on the project.
Bodies of Evidence | Contribution of Dance to Health and Wellbeing: Debating Research Methodologies and Impact
University of Exeter
Dance in Devon
Singing for Lung Health
This study is investigating the value of taking part in Singing for Lung Health, a pilot programme delivered by Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust and Trinity Laban.
The aims are to capture the physical, psychological and social impact of weekly singing class for people with long-term lung conditions such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), asthma and pulmonary fibrosis.
The study is being undertaken by Professor Emma Redding and Dr Rebecca Stancliffe with the Learning and Participation departments at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
Dancing Ahead was a collaborative research project between Trinity Laban’s Dance Science and Learning & Participation (dance) departments. The report below documents the dance science research findings, which was one element of a larger evaluative report on the dance participatory project titled Dancing Ahead. Dancing Ahead was funded by Headstart Lewisham, an initiative supported by Big Lottery, to improve the emotional wellbeing of 10 to 14 year-olds. Lewisham is one of 12 areas in England to receive a grant. Trinity Laban’s dance science research of Dancing Ahead was conducted alongside a larger evaluation commissioned by HeadStart Lewisham.
Dance, Health and Well-being Among the Elderly
Review of previous research undertaken in the dance and health fields, relating to the impact of various kinds of dance, on elderly populations.
Second project which explored the physical and psychological impact of creative dance and PE on young people in ‘at risk’ areas of West Sussex, looking specifically at gender differences.
Dance 4 Your Life
This participatory research project examined the physical and psychological impact of dance on young women aged 14 and took place in schools across North Kent.
The NRG Dance and Health Project investigated the impact of creative dance on specific areas of physical fitness and psychological well-being of 11-14 year old school children.
Dance Talent Development and Training Research
Trinity Laban Dance Science has undertaken extensive research into dancers in training. We have conducted national research into talent development and identification, developed a comprehensive screening and profiling programme for dancers and created the first dance specific tests of dancer fitness.More information
Musicians Health and Training Research
Trinity Laban is committed to the development of music performance science research. We have led funded projects into musician injury prevention and performance enhancement, undertaken studies into the physiological demands of Musical Theatre and was one of the 3 UK conservatoires to collaborate on a large-scale 4 year project into musicians’ health and wellbeing.
Somatics and Creativity Research
By exploring dance practice in its broadest sense, we examine not only the disciplines of physiology, biomechanics and psychology but also the role of somatic practices and embodied and perceptual processes as alternative, relevant ways of knowing, learning and creating dance. This can necessitate a range of methodologies and interdisciplinary approaches.More information
Our current students are undertaking exciting projects within the field of Dance Science. For more information and how to apply to participate, follow the link below:More information
Current Department Research
Trinity Laban Dance Science are currently undertaking a range of research and knowledge engagement activity in the area of dance and performance science. For information on current projects including related outputs and resources and how to take part, follow the link below:More information