Health Promotions in Schools of Music

2004 Conference | Sponsors | University of North Texas | Performing Arts Medical Association



Recommendation 1

Recommendation 2

Recommendation 3

Recommendation 4

Details for Action

Music Education
Liaison Report


Recommendation 1

Adopt a Health Promotion Framework

The World Health Organization (WHO) was established in 1948 and defines health as a complete state of physical, mental, and social well-being, not just the absence of disease. The health promotion orientation grew out of the discoveries that show many factors such as social norms, cultural values and beliefs, perceived stress, quality of support, and environments play essential roles in the quality of a person’s health.

Health promotion as an organized field can be traced to 1974 when the Canadian government identified health promotion as a key strategy aimed at informing, influencing, and assisting both individuals and organizations so that they will accept more responsibility and be more active in matters affecting mental and physical health. In 1986, the WHO held the first International Conference on Health Promotion, where the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion action plan was created. The focus of this plan was to promote the creation of health-centered settings that enable people to have increased control over their health and its improvement.

With the overall aims of embedding within an organization an understanding and commitment to holistic health and the motivation to develop its health-promoting potential, the settings-based approach to health promotion has led to several international movements, including Health Promoting Cities, Hospitals, Schools, and Universities.

Why Health-Promoting Schools of Music?—Faculty within schools of music, particularly those with expertise in music performance, music education, pedagogy, and conducting, represent the primary channels for changing how music is taught and played in order to reduce performance injuries. Music faculty, more than any other group, embody the critical determinants for establishing social and cultural values and beliefs that are so important for influencing students. Music school faculty need to become substantially involved in the prevention of injuries. Interdisciplinary and collaborative strategies with groups and individuals outside of music need to be initiated. However, reliance on these outside professionals without the essential involvement of music faculty will ultimately fail.