About the Tightrope

The Tightrope Tool is the creation of Dr Roberta Evans, a qualified social worker with a Professional Doctorate in Youth Justice and over 25 years experience in practice, ranging from front-line social work in New Zealand and the UK, senior practitioner and manager, to practice development and training.

The idea of using the analogy of the tightrope in her work was first introduced by her mother, Marjan Lousberg, when discussing how to engage parents whose children were open to the Youth Justice Service. This led to the development of the Circus Act, a workbook for parents of adolescents that starts with an analogy of the tightrope and trapeze artist, followed by various exercises based on the theme of circus acts.

Then Roberta undertook her doctorate on parenting interventions for crime prevention and increased her understanding of the array of factors associated with crime and desistance, which need to be considered in the context of how compounding factors can increase risk. This supported much of the research behind the Tightrope that was first used to train youth justice practitioners in risk assessment and later became a holistic tool for all adolescent risk.

Following the pilot and then publication of the Tightrope and in collaboration with Richard Swann, a leadership and development trainer, the Practitioner Tightrope was developed to support managers in understanding the factors that support or hinder resilience. It provides a reflective tool for managers to discuss these with practitioners, particularly in the field of health or social care.

Dr Evans discovered Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), also known as ‘tapping’, as a powerful tool to support her own health and wellbeing. She trained in the technique and is now certified as a Level 2 EFT Practitioner. She has evolved the Tightrope into a framework for anyone that is entering into a process of change or development.

All products and materials are developed and delivered by Dr Evans, unless stated otherwise.

“Life can be a bore if you’re constantly walking sidewalks instead of a tightrope once in a while.” Larry Wilcox