Injuries in dance can take you out for months, and there is nothing more frustrating than waiting on a muscle strain or sprained ankle to fully recover- if it ever does. When you’re young, you can get away with short warm ups and risky moves, but when you get older, you need to take better care of your body. Here are the most Common Types of Injuries in dance and ways to avoid them:
Dancers are always turning: Pirouettes, Chaines, Piques, Fuettes, Chasse en tournant, etc. Without our ankles we cannot dance which is why we need to take good care of them. How to avoid ankle injuries:
- Warming up with Plies
- Proper Balancing Technique
- Minimizing Sickled Feet
- Warming Up with Sautes
- Using Therabands to Improve flexibility and strength
- Keeping Feet and Ankles Warm with Soft and Warm Microfiber Socks
- Landing toe, ball, heel from all jumps
While dancing you can sprain almost any muscle, although the most common strains are hamstrings and groin area. How to Avoid: Never take a warm up for advantage, especially as you get older. Know that a warm up isn’t just stretching or putting on sweats.; if you’re not sweating, you’re not warm. Don’t “goof off” and attempt advanced tricks when you’re not fully warmed up as this can easily lead to strains. Lastly, make sure you stretch every muscle. Dancers tend to focus on their legs, but strains can happen any place in the body. Every time you warm up, warm and stretch your arms, back, neck and feet to prevent an injury that could take you out for months. Teachers: If your warm up doesn’t leave your students sweating, you may consider adding more cardio or ballet.
With so much hair whipping and whacking, you can seriously damage your neck muscles or pinch a nerve. How to Avoid: You or your dancers should warm up their necks every time they dance. This should consist of multiple head rolls, rolls downs and shoulder warm up.
There are a few other common dance injuries including hyper extended joints and plantar fasciitis which can be avoided by proper ballet technique and arch support, respectively. If you have any questions about how you can help your students avoid these injuries, contact me.