At the Phoenix House Academy of Austin, Prevention Specialist Amit Motwani recently developed a three-part stress management presentation for our young clients.
On Wednesday, April 10, Amit brought in special guest Clark Richards to facilitate his “Rhythm Program” with our teens. Clark is an attorney and percussion player in the Austin area. In recovery for 27 years, he is also a former Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor. He knew that interactive drumming has been used as a team-building activity in an array of settings, such as schools, corporations, and retirement centers. His idea was to bring this creative outlet to teens in treatment. Research has shown that drumming and rhythm can have a variety of beneficial effects including reducing stress, increasing participants’ sense of well-being, improving social skills, and strengthening the immune system.
Clark brought enough percussion for a small army—in this case about 30 teens. Our young clients spent an hour exploring different percussive beats and learning to use music and physical activity as an avenue for stress release. The kids and facilitators had a blast; they were surprised and inspired to uncover some hidden talents in the process.
“Learning to manage stress is an integral part of treatment and recovery,” Amit said. “Clark’s program was a breath of fresh air for teens at the Academy. They learned what a powerful tool creative expression can be.”
“It’s important that these kids learn how to have fun without chemicals,” Clark added. “But community drumming is more than just fun. It’s an opportunity for them to connect with one another and to be mutually supportive. It allows them to reduce conflict as opposed to creating it.”
We are grateful to Clark for bringing his percussion skills and positive energy to our Academy. Click to learn more about creative expression opportunities for Phoenix House clients.
If you or a loved one needs help for a substance abuse issue, Phoenix House is here for you. Email us or call today at 1 888 671 9392.