Integrated Movement Therapy
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Integrated Movement Therapy (IMT) has several elements in common with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, including a focus on changing thoughts to change behaviours, and an emphasis on social learning theory. It also shares elements with Dialectical Behavioural Therapy, which includes an exploration of Eastern contemplative traditions. However, IMT is most aligned with Integrated Psychotherapy, in which the inherent value of each person, as well as their multiple dimensions (including physical body, energy, emotions and spiritual connection), is the foundation of the therapy. IMT uses yoga’s philosophical, physical and spiritual framework in conjunction with conventional neurophysiological perspectives to address issues including depression and anxiety to degenerative conditions and life-threatening illness.
Integrated Movement Therapy was developed in the late 1990s by Molly Lannon Kenny, MS-CCC, a speech and language pathologist and yoga educator, for children with developmental challenges.
Lannon Kenny made several crucial observations about her clients in the clinical setting that led to the development of IMT, including the relationship between self-esteem and learning and the relationship between movement and learning readiness and retention. She noted a significant increase in communication skills when her clients were moving, as evidenced in co-treatment with occupational and physical therapists.
Lannon Kenny published her first scholarly article in the International Journal of Yoga Therapy in 2002,< in which she described IMT as an effective intervention for Autism spectrum and related disorders, relating each of the core principles of IMT to a particular aspect of Autism.
- Molly Kenny, M.S. "Integrated Movement Therapy™: Yoga-Based Therapy as a Viable and Effective Intervention for Autism Spectrum and Related Disorders" (PDF). Peacefulpathwaysyoga.com. Retrieved 2017-07-27.