We understand the rigours and challenges of dance training and understand that there are certain injuries that occur almost only in dancers. We care for the developing dancer as their body changes from childhood through to adulthood. Learn more
- We understand the child, teenage and adult dancing body
- We analyse your dancing load
- We understand how to modify or recommend modified dancing
activities as you recover from injuries
- We work with teachers to ensure that clients keep dancing as they recover from injuries
- We provide dance-specific exercises that:
- reflect the best research
- involve appropriate liaison with your dance teachers and
- are appropriate to your dance training and maximise your dance potential.
Pre pointe assessments
What is a pre pointe assessment?
A pre pointe assessment is a one hour assessment that determines a dancer’s physical readiness to progress to pointe shoes. This decision is made based on careful analysis of a dancer’s strength and flexibility in her lower limbs, her posture, core strength, dynamic control, and balance aptitude. It also involves close liaison with the dance teacher.
What if I’m not ready to progress to pointe?
Your physiotherapist will identify any areas that might lead to difficulty or injuries en pointe, and will address those concerns with a series of targeted exercises. They will then liaise with your teacher as to how long it might take to build the necessary strength or flexibility required to progress to pointe shoes safely. Often delaying the transition to pointe for several weeks might make all the difference to the success of that transition.
What if I am ready to progress to pointe?
If you are ready to progress to pointe shoes, your physiotherapist will send a report to your dance teacher indicating that this is the case. It is then at the discretion of your teacher as to when the best time might be to make this transition.
What should I wear for the assessment?
Shorts and a t-shirt are the best things to wear to your assessment. Sometimes a leotard and tights can make it difficult to view certain parts of your spine and knees in particular.
The dance physiotherapy screening: optimising strength, flexibility, and injury prevention
What is a dance screening?
Dance screenings are commonly undertaken by dancers at all stages in their careers. They aim to identify areas of weakness or tightness that can be worked on with specific exercises to improve these areas, and optimise your dancing.
During a personalised dance physiotherapy screening you will be assessed for:
- Spinal alignment and postural symmetry
- Core strength and dynamic pelvic stability
- Hip flexibility and strength, including turnout range and control, and lower limb flexibility
- Foot and ankle function
- Muscle strength and coordination throughout
- Screened for some of the more common dance injuries
Our physiotherapists have expert knowledge in the most common dance injuries, and can identify dancers who may be prone to developing those injuries before symptoms arise. Often targeted exercises can prevent these injuries from occurring. This is why professional dance companies often employ physiotherapists with expertise in dance injuries on staff; to intervene at the ‘niggle’ stage, before that niggle becomes an injury and interferes with dancing.
When should I see a physiotherapist for a dance physiotherapy screening?
Our aim is to treat dancers before they develop injuries so that injury can be avoided. A good time to book for a Dance Physiotherapy Screening is:
- Before an audition
- When dance training changes, eg- number of classes/hours of dance per week increases significantly
- When returning to dance after a long break, including after recovering from an injury
- At the earliest sign of discomfort. Remember, it is often far easier to avoid a niggle progressing to an injury, than it is to treat an injury once it has occurred.
Dance Physiotherapy Screenings are entirely confidential, and whether you share the results with your friends or dance teacher is up to you. However, often allowing your physio to discuss the findings of your assessment with your dance teacher allows your teacher to focus on those areas during class as well, and you will inevitably get faster results!
We are proud members of Australia’s leading physiotherapy, sports and dance medicine associations.