Effects of Art Therapy in Conjunction with Exercise and Deep Breathing on the Reduction of Aggression, Inattention and Impulsivity in School-Aged Children Diagnosed with ADHD

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Jones, Natasha
Master of Arts in Art Therapy
This study is an investigation into increasing the effectiveness of art therapy groups for school-aged children who have been diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or who have problems in inattention, impulsivity, and aggression. Research suggests that physical exercise is an important component to the overall health of children and can reduce hyperactivity, inattention, and aggression. This research is an interdisciplinary study on the use of physical exercise/movement in conjunction with art therapy to decrease aggressive behavior, impulsivity and improve focus and attention with children in a school setting. The results of the study show the exercise activity before art therapy was moderately helpful in reducing symptoms of ADHD and redirection from the therapist during art therapy sessions.It is assumed that the use of physical exercise in conjunction with art therapy improved the effectiveness of group art therapy sessions and the children’s overall performance and behavior in the classroom as reported by their teachers.