Laban Movement Studies

LBMS POSTER UPDATED 2018.9

The LBMS (Laban-Bartenieff Movement Studies) certification program of Inspirees Institute is held since 2016 in collaboration with the prestigious Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies (LIMS®) in New York. This is the first LIMS Certification Program in China and Asia. We welcome the applications from the world to join this exciting international program, an invaluable opportunity to study LMA/BF and gain unique cultural experiences in China.

  • Length: 3-4 years (part time) 
  • Total training hours: 520 hours
  • Application requirement: bachelor degree in psychology, art, education, management and other related field
  • Age requirement: above 24 years
  • Working experience: at least 2 years
  • Program contents: 4 modules
  • Credential: Certified Movement Analyst (CMA)

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What is Laban Movement Analysis (LMA)?

Laban Movement Analysis is a theoretical framework and language for describing movement. The basic concepts of BodyEffortShape and Space are explored through movement experiences, observation, and theoretical discussion.  The human body moves through space dynamically, in constantly changing patterns.  Dance, sleep, sport, work, and quiet conversation: whatever the activity, our body is always moving, relating to itself, the space around us, other bodies.  We are constantly adjusting accommodating, coordinating, balancing, coping, and communicating.

We use Laban Movement Analysis (LMA) to describe how, what, where and when (and sometimes why) movement happens.  Rudolf Laban (1879- 1958) was a pioneer in movement research.  As Laban worked to develop a way to capture movement in writing, he uncovered basic principles of form, sequence, and dynamics.  These principles, and the symbols through which they are represented, make it possible to describe, analyze, and record the evanescent messages of human motion.

What are Bartenieff FundamentalsSM (BF)?

Bartenieff Fundamentals (BF) are movement sequences designed to educate people on how to develop total body connectivity, such as gaining efficiency of movement and strengthening core muscles that together help adapt to life transitions and connect with oneself, others and the environment. Created by Irmgard Bartenieff (1900-1981), physical therapist, pioneer in the field off dance therapy, artist, educator, and cross-culture researcher, this body approach continues to evolve through the work of Certified Movement Analysts, graduates of the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies, LIMS®.

The Bartenieff Method is fundamentally about learning to expand and refine human abilities, develop and improve ease and elegance in activities of daily living to reduce the effects of stress and tension, and improve posture, balance and breathing. 

Using BF in innovative and precise ways, the Bartenieff Method taps both kinesthetic and emotional intelligence to address human movement and enhance the abilities and capacity for change and transformation. The approach is based in a sophisticated understanding of the way human beings evolve from developmental patterns, and organize their potentials for coping and making effective relationships in the world.  

About Certified Movement Analysts

Certified Movement Analysts (CMA) consult on a wide variety of nonverbal research projects and coach athletes, politicians, executives, performers, and anyone interested in improving communication skills through effective movement training. The combined expertise of over 900 CMAs internationally allows us to be on the vanguard of the emerging field of Movement Studies, while providing our clients with a myriad of effective solutions. 

A Certified Movement Analyst:

  • Has knowledge of Laban Movement Analysis and understands how it is applied within various fields and contexts.
  • Has been evaluated in her/his ability to physically demonstrate and verbally articulate concepts related to Body, Effort, Shape, Space, and Relationship; from both broad and specific perspectives.
  • Has demonstrated the ability to verbally articulate and physically demonstrate the basic principles of Bartenieff Fundamentals, and understands their relationship to LMA—both theoretically and practically.
  • Has the ability to apply theory in practice through research and creative work.
  • Has an understanding of her/his own movement style in a variety of contexts, including interaction.
  • Has experience observing, recording, and reading movement data using: motifs, phrase writing, coding sheets, video and live observation.

About LIMS

The Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies - LIMS NYC is globally recognized as one of the top institutions in the world for the study of movement in all walks of life. We actively raise awareness of the importance of movement and movement understanding in everyday life, and also in the performing arts, sciences, business, and communications fields, providing strong theoretical and experiential materials for the in-depth study of movement.

The Institute has its origins in the early 1960s, when the Dance Notation Bureau in New York City began to offer, in addition to its work in Labanotation, courses in Effort/Shape taught by Irmgard Bartenieff, a senior member of the DNB. At the time, Bartenieff and her assistants were applying Effort/Shape in various projects in diverse areas such as psychology, physical therapy, child development, anthropology, and performing arts. 



Opportunities for the application of Effort/Shape began to exceed what could be realized by the few trained notators. Bartenieff’s work and that of her assistants required more trained personnel, and they began to receive many training requests from professionals who wanted to use the work in their own fields. Consequently, in the fall of 1965 Bartenieff and her assistants Forrestine Paulay and Martha Davis, established the first Effort/Shape Training Program at the Dance Notation Bureau. Designed for professionals from the performing arts and the behavioral sciences, this intensive two-year program reflected the converging interests of many professionals.  In 1978 the Certificate Program separated from the Dance Notation Bureau and the Laban Institute of Movement Studies, now the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies was born. 

Since then, LIMS® has certified over 900 CMAs who are respected professionals all over the world. The CMA title became synonymous to excellence in Movement Analysis. LIMS® has also been a special home for its graduates as a venue to present their work in conferences, performing arts events, publications, and workshops.

Today, at LIMS®, we maintain and grow a vital and dynamic NYC institution, which comprises a school, an arts and cultural program, and a research center.

Through conferences, researches, publications, workshops, performing arts events, media appearances, and our four Certification Programs in Laban Movement Studies, we have been introducing Laban Movement Analysis, the Bartenieff Fundamentals SM, and related work to movement professionals and the general public for the past 28 years.

The recognition of LIMS work is easily proven:

  • Most higher education institutions in the US employ LIMS Certified Movement Analysts (CMAs) to develop their dance and/or movement therapy programs; many have CMAs as either Chairs or Deans of Arts’ Departments.
  • The NY Board of Education launched in 2005 the “Blue Print for Movement Education”, which is Laban based, and developed, in part, by CMAs.
  • LIMS members are frequently called to advise and curate international dance festivals/conferences, such as the recent Bratislava in Movement Contemporary Dance Festival, held in Slovakia in October 2006.
  • Many among our CMAs have been working in new and exciting fields for movement specialists, such as Business Consultancy, Corporate Communication and Animation.
  • Many fitness and sports trainers, as well as Somatic Practitioners use Bartenieff Fundamentals as their core bodywork.

The field for movement studies never ceases to expand. LIMS NYC has been expanding accordingly: maintaining the classical work of Laban and Bartenieff, while nurturing and embracing new developments and new applications of their movement theories.

To inquiry: Katee Shen 15911509565,  dmt@inspirees.com