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Cheerleading Safety Tips

Posted on by Tara Hackney, PT, DPT, OCS, KTTP

As cheerleaders begin to return to practice, there are some important safety tips to remember. Cheerleading is a potentially high risk sport and it involves extensive and consistent training.

Participation in cheerleading ranges from young kids through collegiate athletes. The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) estimates approximately 400,000 students participate in U.S. high school cheerleading annually, including competitive squads.1 Cheerleaders can be found at the elementary, junior high, high school, and collegiate levels as well as at park districts or private competitive gyms. Cheerleading squads can be all-girl or co-ed.

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Returning To Sports After Quarantine

Posted on by Tara Hackney, PT, DPT, OCS, KTTP

After months at home away from sports, athletes can start to look forward to returning to doing what they love again! As states begin to reopen, sports practices and games are beginning to resume. Many athletes may find themselves excited to return to sports but are they physically ready to jump right back in? These are some considerations for athletes, parents and coaches as they return to sports after this break.

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How Team USA Rhythmic Gymnasts are Staying Active at Home

Posted on by Tara Hackney, PT, DPT, OCS, KTTP

Co Authors: Team USA’s Laura Zeng and Evita Griskenas

With continued shelter in place orders across the country, many athletes are having to alter training and competition schedules including Team USA’s Rhythmic Gymnasts. Unable to attend practice as they normally would, their competition season has been interrupted along with the delay of the Tokyo Olympics. Laura Zeng and Evita Griskenas, two of Team USA’s top rhythmic gymnasts, give us insight into what they are doing at home to stay active and prevent injury as well as tips for other rhythmic gymnasts.

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The Show Must (Virtually) Go On

Posted on by Alyssa Hartley, PT, DPT, CMTPT

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, dance companies and studios are closed for classes and rehearsals. Even without an audience to perform for, it is important that dancers maintain appropriate mental and physical activities while at home.

As a performing arts physical therapist, I wanted to check in with some of Chicago’s professional dancers with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago – Adrienne Lipson, Kevin J. Shannon, and Craig D. Black Jr.. Read below to learn how their worlds are adapting and growing during this time when the theaters are dark and how they are keeping a positive attitude through it all.

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6 Key Exercises for Gymnasts to Work On At Home

Posted on by Amy Bell, PT, DPT

Gymnastics clubs across the country have been closed for several weeks in order to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. This has resulted in gymnasts focusing on stretching and conditioning at-home in preparation for when they can get back to the gym. This is a good time to address any flexibility and strength issues that may have affected an athlete’s ability to train earlier in the year and help with injury prevention when allowed to return to practice. Here are 6 key exercises to target common areas of weakness in gymnasts.

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Six Tips for At-Home Fitness for Dancers

Posted on by Kathleen Warner, PT, DPT, Performing Arts Specialty

Co-author: Derrick Agnoletti, Joffrey Ballet Company Dancer

The majority of the country has adopted shelter in place policies, which means many of our daily routines have been disrupted. For Joffrey Ballet dancer Derrick Agnoletti, this means being unable to attend daily ballet class and rehearsals with his colleagues. As a physical therapist, I am adjusting treatment sessions in order to continue to connect with patients safely. Here is some advice for dancers who are similarly adjusting to training at home.

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Touring with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago: From Chicago to Germany

Posted on by Maria Brady, PT, DPT

I am a performing arts physical therapist working at a downtown Athletico clinic in Chicago. I recently had the opportunity to travel with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago to Germany. As I let my patients know I would be away from the clinic, quite a few asked what I would be doing. When I told them I would be working while traveling internationally, many responded wondering “How does your work as a physical therapist take you to Germany for a week?!” Let me explain…

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Achilles Tendinitis in Gymnasts

Posted on by Tara Hackney, PT, DPT, OCS, KTTP

Tendinitis is a chronic, overuse type of injury that is common in gymnasts as they perform multiple repetitions of their routines – on the floor, beam and when sprinting toward the vault. Rhythmic gymnasts are also at risk due to performing up to four different routines on the floor with repetitive jumping, leaping and turning.

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