Category Archive: Performing Arts

Eat, Sleep, Dance, Repeat: The Importance of Sleep for Dancers

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As summer comes to an end, Fall brings a season of routine. This is especially true of dancers who are back to academia on top of rehearsal. Professional dancers, for example, will begin preparing their upcoming repertoire for programs like Joffrey Ballet’s Giselle and Hubbard Street Dance Company’s Fall Series.

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Tips for Keeping Your Feet Dancing Through the Holidays

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The Nutcracker is the most iconic holiday ballet performed by ballet schools and professional companies around the world.

Between December 10th and December 30th, the Joffrey Ballet Chicago will perform The Nutcracker 27 times.3 That’s an average of 1.2 shows per day! For optimal performance, it is crucial that dancers are proactive in preventing injuries from occurring and correctly manage injuries when they do occur. Foot and ankle injuries represent 34-62 percent of all injuries reported by dancers.5 Female ballet dancers are especially vulnerable to these injuries because of the increased demand put on the foot and ankle when dancing en pointe.

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Your PLAN for an Injury-Free Summer Dance Intensive

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For many dancers, summers are filled with morning to evening dance classes. Sometimes learning new styles, other times perfecting their technique in a familiar style. Often these summer dance intensives are away from home allowing the dancer to stay in a dormitory and meet new friends who have the same passion. Auditions for these programs are held months in advance and attention from renowned dance teachers may arise from this experience.

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Stop Dancing Around The Truth About “Turn Out”

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What is “turn out”?

“Turn out” is the amount of outward rotation that can be achieved from the legs.

For a ballet dancer, the ideal amount of turn out is 90° from each leg.1 If that motion is not possible from the hip joints, the motion must come from other parts of the body.2 While the ideal amount of hip external rotation of each leg is 90°, no need to toss your pointe shoes in the trash if you don’t have that much hip mobility. Even elite professional ballerinas rely on compensations to produce the desired level of turn out.3

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Correction of Muscle Imbalances for Gymnasts and Cheerleaders

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Most people agree that gymnasts and cheerleaders must be very strong and flexible. Although each athlete is different, patterns of tightness and weakness are often found when screening gymnasts and cheerleaders. As with many sports, some muscles will become naturally stronger and more flexible, while others will be weaker and tighter due to the positioning of the skills practiced.  Correction of these muscle imbalances is important to enhance skill level and prevent injury. (more…)

6 Tips for a Healthy High School Gymnastics Season

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The gymnastics and cheer seasons’ are underway! Check out our second blog focusing on staying healthy during the gymnastics and cheerleading season. Our second blog by Melissa Winterhalter, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS, specializes in gymnastics and performing arts. She is a Board Certified Orthopedic Specialist and a NSCA Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist. (more…)

Wrist Pain in Gymnasts and Cheerleaders

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The gymnastics and cheer seasons’ are picking up intensity! Check out our first of two blogs focusing on staying healthy during the gymnastics and cheerleading season. Our first blog by Sarah Clough PT, DPT, Cert. MDT, PES, who has a passion for treating gymnasts, trampolinists and cheerleaders, focuses on wrist pain in gymnasts and cheerleaders. (more…)

How to Safely Learn the Splits

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Coaches, parents and athletes often ask me, “What is the best way to learn or improve upon doing the splits?”  Gymnasts, cheerleaders and dancers are often the population that is interested, but lately this has become a great topic for baseball players, hurdlers and hockey players.  Below are three great stretches to assist in gaining flexibility to improve your splits with some good reminders on how to stay safe while stretching.

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Cheerleading: 10 Ways to Prevent a Sports Related Injury

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Cheerleading: 10 Ways to Prevent a Sports Related Injury

Cheerleading takes athleticism. The sport necessitates strength, flexibility, endurance, and dedication.  Injury is a risk in any sport. However, several methods of prevention can be implemented to assist in avoiding injury. Below is a list of 10 ways a cheerleading related injury may be prevented. (more…)

5 Tips to Staying Healthy in Gymnastics

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Editor’s Note: Today’s post is written by Amy Bell, PT, DPT. Amy is Athletico’s Gymnastics and Cheerleading Program Manager.

Young gymnasts everywhere aspire to go to the Olympics one day and compete for the gold. While the road ahead will not be easy, staying healthy while participating in gymnastics will be the key to helping gymnasts’ dreams come true. (more…)

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