Pointe work traditionally commences at the age of 12 for female dancers. At this time, these girls are often undergoing growth spurts and their dance loading can double or triple making this a very risky time for dancers in terms of injury.
Pointe work requires a good foundation of classical ballet technique as well as specific foot, ankle, knee and hip strength and control to be undertaken safely and enjoyably. If the dancer is strong and technically proficient in these areas when commencing pointe work, injury can be prevented and the development of poor habits can be avoided.
A pre-pointe assessment includes a thorough examination of the range of motion, strength and technical proficiency of the dancer. Current and past injuries, over all dance load, dance styles and age are considered. A tailored exercise program will be provided to address the individual dancer’s specific requirements.
Identify what is going on for you and what the source of the problem is
Provide you with treatment to get you moving in the right direction immediately
Create a tailored solution to help treat and prevent dance injuries.
Safe return to dance
Let our team guide you from injury to a safe return to dance ensuring no issues or re injury.
Dance specific injuries
Ballet places particular demands and loads on a dancer’s body. A unique collection of injury types is therefore seen in dancers that are less common in the general population.
Common dance specific injuries include:
- Posterior ankle impingement
- Os Trigonum syndrome
- Flexor hallucis longus tenosynovistis
- Metatarsal stress reactions and fractures
- Patellofemoral pain syndome
- Anterior hip impingement
- Labral pathologies
- Hip flexor tendon pathology
Importance of prevention
A dancer’s body is paramount to their future health and success in the dance industry. With correct preventative measures and a sound technical foundation, injuries can be prevented and career length maximised. Certain strengthening exercises should be incorporated into a dancer’s daily conditioning routine, especially if the dancer is on pointe, to maintain adequate strength and stability.
About Lucy Anderson
- Classical ballet dancer for 15 years
- Studied at the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School full time elite dance
program year 10-12, 2006-2008
- Australian Conservatoire of Ballet 2009
- Sustained foot and hip injuries during dance career – treatment of these injures by
some fantastic dance physios.
- PD – regional meeting of the International Association of Dance Medicine and
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