Our goal is about health promotion and disease prevention. We utilize two music and wellness programs that give individuals opportunities to have fun through creative expression, in a non-threatening environment, while engaging in activities that lead to improved health. These activities encompass enjoyable, accessible, and fulfilling group-based activities that unite people of all ages regardless of their challenges, backgrounds, ethnicity, ability or prior experience. HealthRHYTHMS, a group empowerment drumming program and Clavinova Connection (uses Yamaha digital pianos) have demonstrated through peer-reviewed research studies that 1-hour of actively engaging in these programs for 6 weeks results in a host of psycho-social benefits including reduction in depression, anxiety, anger, and tension, builds camaraderie, improves communication, and increases self-esteem. Both program were innovated by Barry Bittman, MD, neurologist and population health innovator. No prior musical knowledge is required for either program. There is no right or wrong way to actively engage in our programs. The programs do not evoke fear of failure. While therapeutic in nature, our programs are not about treatment plans and therapy. They are about recreational music making. The word recreation means "restoration to health." We offer music as a wellness modality, as music is one of the only activities that activates, stimulates, and uses the entire brain.
"HealthRHYTHMS has brought us closer together." - Senior Housing Resident
"I am 72 and never could play an instrument. But (now) I can play the drums!" - Member of a senior center
"My mother loves it so much, she doesn't want the program (HealthRHYTHMS) to end." - Caregiver about her Mom at an assisted living facility
"Playing the Clavinova is good therapy for my arthritis, my hands feel better at the end of the class." - Continuing Care Retirement Community Resident
" He always plays patriotic songs, that bring up memories of certain instances he likes to share from years of service during World War II." - Wellness Director about a resident playing the Clavinova
To promote a culture of wellness by actively engaging older adults and caregivers in two evidence-based recreational music making wellness programs, visual art, performing art, and dance. The two programs; Clavinova Connection and HealthRHYTHMS are not about mastering an instrument, and it is not about music therapy. Rather, it is about recreational music making which provides opportunity to have fun by creatively expressing themselves on a musical instrument.