Dancing Dialogues Professional Exchange: DMT Online Session

We were so inspired by the depth of the conversations amongst members at our professional exchange weekend this year! We wanted to share a recap of what took place in each session, for those of you who might have missed it!




In this session participants explored the challenges with leading DMT sessions online with clients and discussed strategies to increase engagement. The lead facilitators (Rebbeca Barnstaple andJessica Houghton) talked about a number of topics such as : creating group cohesion or enacting a “circle” during both the check-in and movement components. Participants were led through experiential components (dancing!) to help embrace the 2D screen space to find “play” and group connection. The participants discussed techniques for engagement beyond movement by taking advantage of technical features.


Rebecca led us through playful experiences with music embracing 2D space. Participants explored how to enter and exit the camera frame, sometimes with specific body parts (i.e. leading with elbow or leg) to help clients transition into 2D space. The participants discussed the importance of using self-touch/self-soothing; mirroring and tracking as a way to see and be seen.


When working with clients that were less motivated by movement, Jessica shared how to help clients use objects in their space as a way for them to express what they were feeling or what they wanted to share. (e.g. I am feeling like this pillow, soft and vulnerable”). The facilitators also discussed the importance of agency of clients. That clients may choose to only show parts of themselves they are comfortable with on screen.

The session also covered different features that virtual platforms offered. The use of technology was further explored such as the shared-screen and whiteboard features in platforms like Zoom. Here participants could use the annotate tools to co-create a document, or make shapes or drawings together as a way of establishing group cohesion.


Finally the participants discussed issues around privacy and navigating the responsibility to protect and promote client confidentiality. This led to discussions around navigating boundaries online. For example, some clients may not want to do trauma work in their bedrooms. They may need support to construct boundaries (ie. alternate location, creating a temporary, separate space to do this type of processing). Overall this was a rich discussion and movement experience, one that infused more hope and creativity through sharing best-practices in doing DMT online.


Read about other sessions:

Combining Theoretical Approaches

LGBTI2SQ+ & Inclusion

Community Conversation on Diversity, Inclusion, and Accessibility

Other Posts from our DMTAC Circle