Monday, May 9, 2011

Interesting Facts About Dancers

“Ballet ranks with football as the most demanding of all physical activities and sports”. 
  • Since 1978 – 3000 articles have been published on dance injuries.
  • Between 75-97 % annual incidence of injury reported among professional dancers.
  • 80% of dancer have a major injury during their carrier.
  • 93% of dance teachers become teachers because of injury. These injuries often go untreated (often due to financial constraints)
  • 65% of injuries dance are overuse 35% are acute or traumatic injuries Byhring 2002.
  • Only 2% of dance injuries need surgery – 98% can be treated with conservative therapy (Physiotherapy, Chiropractic, Active Release, Graston).
  • The average dancer does 200 one leg landing jumps per class – These jumps can produce a force equivalent to 12 times the dancers body weight.
  • There are two common four letter swear words in dance “ Food” and “Rest”.
A high level of fatigue is common in most dancers – Many of the injuries that occur, happen during times of increased fatigue. There are three main deleterious effects of fatigue, that are very well documented: decrease proprioception, impaired balance, decrease joint stability – Altered muscle recruitment patterns
  • Burnout is very common in dancers, which causes: decreased strength, decreased coordination, decreased cognitive function, decreased immune function
  • Burn out often comes from prolonged stress – dancers are often perfectionists (unrealistic standards, self critical, full of self doubt, often have perfectionist parents).
Stress usually manifest is three stages ( Dr. Hans Selye’s “General Adaptation Syndrome).
Stage One
  • Increase heart/respiration rate (increased blood pressure)
  • Stomach problems (blood flow is being moves from GI tract to Skeletal muscles).
  • Increased muscles tension (decreased flexibility, coordination, muscle pain common, headaches).
  • Decreased cognitive function
Stage Two
  • Level of fatigue increases (affects mental attitude – avoidance strategies common, avoidance of tasks etc, increased procrastination).
  • Overall lack of motivation
  • Insomnia common (associated weight gain – increased stress hormones, alteration in eating patterns)
Stage Three
  • Depression
  • Chronic fatigue (mental and/or physical)
  • Increase in health problems
  • Avoidance of all activities

Prevention of burnout in dancers requires several key
  • Balancing activity with rest
  • Periodization training (Professional dancers do not do what other athletic disciplines do, they often dance at same level throughout the year).
  • Sleep
  • Good dietary habits – Dancers are known for the three nutritional C’s – Coffee, Cigarettes, and Candy

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1 comment:

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    Interesting Facts