Ambler retirement community practicing self-care through power of music

AMBLER, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- We're one month into the new year and if one of your resolutions was to increase your happiness by practicing self-care, you might want to harness the power of music.

At the Artman, a retirement community in Ambler, Sarah Biedka - a board-certified music therapist - is encouraging residents in her class to march to the beat of their own drum.

"The music that you have within you, the rhythm that you have within you, is you. The authenticity is beautiful," she said.

Biedka says she offers various music therapy classes to empower older adults to have the best quality of life.

"Music is the way that I connect with people. The whole point of music therapy is to build a relationship and then have that relationship be transformative for the client. My concern is always, What does a person want for their life?" she said.

For some residents, it's about increasing socialization.

"Actually, I would hide in my room all the time and when she has a class, I go out. You get to know the other residents and talk to people. Just that I enjoy it very much and it seems to raise my spirits," said Sarah Way.

For others, it's about rediscovering a fond piece of the past and bringing a new zest for life.

"I played guitar for over 20 years, so it brings back a lot of happy memories. It makes me want to get out so I can play more," said Bill Brown.

"Empowerment and building the community is a really big part of my interactions," said Biedka.

During class, residents sing and play instruments together.

"We're doing work with instruments that are pretty intuitive, so a set of Maracas or a frame drum. I get a lot of participation," said Biedka.

"Again, it's the guitar and it's Sarah's enthusiasm. She makes you want to be there," said Brown.

"We do really incredible work and it's so, so very rewarding," said Biedka.
Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.