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By immersing himself in the dances and concentrating on the learning required, he forgot his problems and concerns, the worries of everyday life, and reached a state of relaxation, accompanied by feelings of happiness. But also I have been around such wonderful people and dancing with them makes me feel good! And I don't get that anywhere else to the same extent. So it's becoming. Several participants explained how listening to the music and the collective sharing of patterns of movement induced a unique state of mind, sometimes occurring only occasionally, but intense enough to be significant for those involved.
Being absorbed by the movements, the music and the dances, participants referred to one of the elements of flow, namely, the loss of self-consciousness, in which performers become one with their performance Csikszentmihalyi, Csikszentmihalyi, M. Flow: The psychology of happiness. London , UK : Rider. The idea of feeling transported to another level, away from everyday life experience, was often commented on.
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Enabling occupation: An occupational therapy perspective. Capturing the element of belonging, the participants perceived the ethos of circle dance as a motivating factor for attending groups and suggested it provided an opportunity to develop and maintain connections with others. This sub-category had two components relating to the environment and the connections formed.
Feeling supported and acknowledged by the other members of a circle dance group whilst maintaining one's individuality were aspects remarked upon by several participants. The supportive environment appeared to be constructed around the idea that circle dance attracts people who have similar characteristics and interests circle dance, world music.
Being welcoming, inclusive and friendly were some of personal attributes mentioned. Circle dance was perceived as unique in the sense that this shared occupation is performed in a circle, enriching and instigating the development of relationships.
Participating in a shared occupation means to align occupational performance with others to achieve a common goal. Another participant F24 remarked that circle dance appeared to facilitate a sense of trust between people, based on qualities such as the honesty and openness that permeate the social world of circle dance.
The participants frequently referred to the fact that circle dance fosters layers of connections: feeling part of a group, local community regional or national level , and wider community international level. One participant F2 attributed this sense of connection to circle dance being a shared occupation that instigates a sense of cooperation, of being needed.
She stated that dancers tend to leave their everyday problems aside, creating a different kind of atmosphere, and working together to learn, perform and enjoy the dances and the company of the group. The participants also expressed the feeling of being connected to a wider community that affords alternatives for change and brings possibilities. The fact that circle dancers have their own journal The Grapevine , which lists all available groups in the UK, means they can go to other groups and workshops located in different geographical areas.
If a participant moved to the other side of the country, it is very likely that she or he would find a local circle dance group and be able to continue engaging in this occupation. Yes, that's quite nice. You don't need to know people to dance with them. Circle dance had helped many participants overcome difficulties in their lives, including depression, stress, anxiety and bereavement. This topic was common across narratives of both circle dance participants and teachers and had two components relating to the security circle dance offers and managing one's health.
Another participant F14 also realised this occupation had been specifically helpful during difficult periods in her life, mentioning the relevance of preserving circle dance in her routine and having the freedom to attend or return to it whenever necessary. The participants described, to varying extents, how circle dance became the means to manage difficult life circumstances and to overcome conditions such as severe depression.
I've talked to a lot of people at circle dancing who've said to me that they were, possibly, unwell or depressed when they first started and they were looking for something that would help them to unwind. I know a lot of people who have mentioned that sort of thing. Being engaged in circle dance was perceived as a unique experience and distinct from other everyday occupations, as it created opportunities for self-investment , self-development , feeling transformed and feeling transported.
This view of quality time or self-investment emphasised the richness of experience derived from being engaged in circle dance and its contribution towards their sense of well-being doing, being, becoming and belonging components; Hammell, Hammell, K.
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Flow: The psychology of optimal experience. The intense focus and concentrated attention on the movements, the music and the dances created opportunities to feel transported into a new reality. Occupation and flow. Molineux Ed. Oxford , UK : Blackwell Publishing. This finding is similar to earlier research of the experience of choir singing Jacob et al. The participants also identified the sense of unity derived from the experience of collective movement in which one participates voluntarily, as another element contributing to the sense of being transformed.
This aspect parallels the concept of spirituality in occupation CAOT, , and appears to connect with the idea that traditional folk dances have religious and ritual origins Wosien, Wosien, B. Supporting earlier research on circle dance conducted in Brazil Hebling, Hebling, L. Circle dance also offers a social world, which gives some insight into the way circle dance, as a shared occupation, can facilitate a sense of belonging. Promotion of a sense of community and social integration has also been observed by York and Wiseman York, M.
This sub-theme may parallel one of the distinct qualities of serious leisure; its unique ethos and social world Stebbins, Stebbins, R. Serious leisure: A perspective for our time.go here
Sacred Circle Dance Returns! - First Parish in Framingham Unitarian Universalist
Their sense of cooperation, helping, and being needed also came together in the practice of circle dance. Capturing a component of belonging Wilcock, Wilcock, A. Once immersed in the ethos of circle dance, they appear to gain a social identity as circle dancers that allows them to circulate between various events, regular classes or workshops. It could be argued that the social support found in the circle dance network encourages dancers to sustain their engagement, providing opportunities for social integration. Circle dance appeared to be a significant leisure occupation in which self-fulfilment, transformation, and self-regeneration are some of the perceived benefits.
It was evident that involvement with circle dance helped participants overcome difficulties in their lives and continued to be important in their recovery process. The power of dance: Health and healing. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine , 1 4 , — Similarly, dance has been used in chronic diseases, mental and physical health prevention and management, both in a health care context and in community settings Ward, Ward, S. The voice of dance education — past, present and future: Health and the power of dance.
The method of data collection in this study was primarily in-depth interviews. The addition of other sources of data might have expanded the categories. For example, a focus group might have revealed group opinions, refining and extending points generated by individuals. Additionally, a comparative study of circle dance, investigating the experience of circle dance participants in different countries could reveal how meanings are constructed, taking into consideration social and cultural differences.
For the participants, meanings were gained through the experiential nature of circle dance, which influenced their sense of well-being and promoted the quality of their experience. Placed in a position of high significance, circle dance appeared to be selected by the participants as a leisure occupation in which self-development, transformation, self-regeneration are some of the perceived benefits. The findings suggest that, as a multifaceted occupation, circle dance creates meaning and is of potential relevance to a healthy lifestyle, influencing people's health and well-being.
This research was part of a larger doctoral study completed by the first author at the Centre for Research for Health and Wellbeing, University of Bolton. Ana L. Diane L. Skip to Main Content.
Search in: This Journal Anywhere. Advanced search. Submit an article Journal homepage. Pages Accepted 22 Feb Feature Articles. The experience of meaning in circle dance.
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View translated version:. The meaning of occupation The concept of meaningful occupation has been explored by many scholars Hammell, Hammell, K. Dancing and well-being Dance, as a topic of inquiry, has been explored from various viewpoints e. Conceptualising circle dance Circle dance is a revival of a very ancient art form, which for thousands of years allowed people from different cultures to express themselves through movement and dance.
Methods This exploratory qualitative study applied a constructivist approach to grounded theory. Participants Following ethical approval granted by the University of Bolton Ethics Committee, access to the field was gained through the UK circle dance network. The experience of meaning in circle dance All authors. Published online: 18 April Table 1. CSV Display Table. Table 2. Interview questions. Display full size. Unique experience of being engaged in circle dance Being engaged in circle dance was perceived to be a unique and meaningful experience, distinct from everyday occupations.
Self-investment, self-development Finding deep fulfilment and enjoyment, the participants referred to circle dance as a form of self-investment or self-development. Feeling transformed For many participants, circle dance was a transformative way to feel revitalised and regenerated. Feeling transported Several participants explained how listening to the music and the collective sharing of patterns of movement induced a unique state of mind, sometimes occurring only occasionally, but intense enough to be significant for those involved.
Welcome to the Circle Dance Grapevine website
Feeling part of the ethos of circle dance Capturing the element of belonging, the participants perceived the ethos of circle dance as a motivating factor for attending groups and suggested it provided an opportunity to develop and maintain connections with others. Supportive environment Feeling supported and acknowledged by the other members of a circle dance group whilst maintaining one's individuality were aspects remarked upon by several participants. Fostering connections The participants frequently referred to the fact that circle dance fosters layers of connections: feeling part of a group, local community regional or national level , and wider community international level.
Circle dance helping to overcome difficulties in life Circle dance had helped many participants overcome difficulties in their lives, including depression, stress, anxiety and bereavement. Discussion Being engaged in circle dance was perceived as a unique experience and distinct from other everyday occupations, as it created opportunities for self-investment , self-development , feeling transformed and feeling transported.
Limitations and future research The method of data collection in this study was primarily in-depth interviews. Acknowledgement This research was part of a larger doctoral study completed by the first author at the Centre for Research for Health and Wellbeing, University of Bolton. Article Metrics Views.