Dance Physiotherapy

Dance Physiotherapy is an area of physiotherapy dedicated to the prevention and treatment of dance related injuries. Dance is a highly specialized sport, with the physical requirements and demands on the body like no other! It is essential for the dancer’s health that they have appropriate strength, control and technique in order to prevent injury. It is paramount that any injury or overuse condition is treated specifically and individually to ensure that dancer can return to practice safely.

Sutherland Physiotherapy’s dance physio services include:

Dance Assessments: These assessments are important for every dancer, regardless of age or experience. They aim to screen the dancer and identify technical faults or any areas of weakness that may be limiting performance or lead to an injury. A comprehensive assessment will address areas such as technique, foot control, turnout and hip strength, posture, core control and flexibility. An individualized training program will be devised to address any identified issues, prevent injury and improve performance. A large part of the assessment is educating the dancer to understand their own body, enabling them to work to their full capacity safely within their physical capabilities.

Pre Pointe Assessments: Going ‘En Pointe’ is an exciting time in a ballerina’s life however, it is a time where special care needs to be taken to ensure the dancer is ready for the demands that Pointe work puts on the body. A Pre-Pointe Assessment is integral in determining the dancer’s readiness for transitioning En Pointe. The assessment will look at classical ballet technique, foot and ankle strength and flexibility, postural and core control, hip turnout range and strength and stage of physical development. The session will determine if the dancer is ready for Pointe, or whether further training is needed to be prepared for Pointe work. The dancer should gain a good understanding of what is required in order to be able to progress onto Pointe. They will be provided with a specific home exercise program to strengthen the domains that are limiting their progression on to Pointe, and also improve their dancing technique in general.

Treatment of Dance related injuries: Injuries acquired through dance require specific assessment and individual rehab programs to ensure the safe return to practice. A thorough examination of the injured area, as well as an assessment of the technical faults which may have lead to the injury is essential to fully rehabilitate the dancer. Treatment may include manual therapy and taping/bracing if required. A tailored exercise program will be designed for the patient. As well as rehabilitating the injury, the program will support the body while unable to dance and address any technical faults that may have contributed to the development of the injury. The intent is to rehabilitate the dancer to be stronger than they were before the injury occurred, aiming to prevent further injury.