Dancing Injuries

 

 

 

As surprising as it may be, more people are injured dancing each year than in contact sports like rugby and boxing. According to data collected by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, over 30,000 people were seen by an emergency room department for dance related injuries in 1997.

What Causes Dancing Injuries?

Dancing, whether it be jazz, ballroom, ballet, tap, lyrical, hip-hop, or some other style, requires a great deal of strength, endurance, and flexibility for the body to complete complex movements. Those that want to participate in dance at competitive levels often have years of intense, frequent, and repetitive practice ahead of them to master the moves and steps associated with their style(s) of dance. This alone leaves many dancers prime candidates for overuse injuries.

Motions created by lunging, squatting, landing and jumping, lifting, turning, and so forth also make dancers highly prone to traumatic injuries, many of which can be disabling. In fact, some studies have suggested that as many as 80% of professional dancers will suffer some sort of disabling injury within the life of their career.

What Are Some Common Dancing Injuries?

Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a flat, tough, and fairly thin band of tissue that lies directly above the skin on the bottom of foot. It’s technically a ligament that connects the heel bone to the toes and that supports the arch of the foot. Although this ligament is designed to absorb a high levels of shock and stress, the repetitive and high impact movements associated with dance can cause the plantar fascia to become overstretched, irritated, and inflamed. This is called plantar fasciitis.

The main symptom of plantar fasciitis is pain upon the first few steps after sitting or laying down. The pain may subside after a few minutes, but eventually return after walking, running, or dancing. The bottom of the foot may also be tender to touch, visibly swollen, and red.

Dancers that don’t sink their heels on jumps; practice or perform on hard surfaced floors; have pronation issues, high arches, tight calf muscles, or tight a Achilles tendon; don’t wear shoes with arch support; or that suddenly increase the duration, frequency, or intensity of their dance schedule are particularly prone to plantar fasciitis. If the irritation and inflammation of plantar fasciitis continues, the plantar fascia may eventually tear. At this point, the injury is termed a plantar fascia strain.

Sprained Ankle

An ankle sprain involves one or more of ligaments in the ankle being stretched or torn. There are actually several ligaments that stabilize the ankle - the anterior talo-fibular ligament, posterior talo-fibular ligament, and calcaneo-fibular ligament along the lateral side of the ankle; the deltoid ligament along the medial side of the ankle; and the inferior tibio-fibular ligaments, which are attached to the lower ends of the tibia and fibula just above the ankle. When the ankle is rolled or twisted past it’s normal range of motion, one or more of these ligaments may be stretched or torn.

There are several types of sprains, based on how the ligament was stretched or torn:

* Inversion - the foot inverts too much as the ankle rolls over the outside of the foot. This can stretch or tear a lateral ligament. Around nine out of ten ankle sprains are classified as inversion.

* Eversion - the ankle rolls over the inside of the foot and stretches or tears the medial ligament.

* High ankle - an inferior tibio-fibular ligament is stretched or torn when the foot and lower leg are twisted outwardly.

Additionally, all sprains are graded based on the degree of stretching or tearing to the affected ligament(s):

* Grade one - stretching or microscopic tearing of one of the ankle ligaments.

* Grade two - moderate tearing of one of the ankle ligaments. There may be swelling, decreased range of motion, redness, heat, pain, and tenderness.

* Grade three - significant to complete tearing of one of the ankle ligaments. This grade is usually accompanied by significant immobility, swelling, redness, heat, pain, and tenderness.

Shin Splints

A shin splint is a term used to describe pain along the tibia, or shinbone. Anterior shin splints occur along the front of the tibia and posterior shin splints occur along the inner edge of the lower leg. It’s a common occurrence in any sport that requires high-impact footwork like jumping and running.

The tibia bone is covered by a periostium sheath. The tibia bone is the connection point for the anterior tibialis muscle, which pulls the foot upwards. It's also the connection point for the posterior tibialis muscles, which pulls the foot in and downward. The shin pain is often caused when these muscles, their tendons, and/or the periostium become irritated from overuse. Pronation issues and muscular imbalances are also common causative factors of shin splints.

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Acute Sinew Liniment

Acute Stage Treatment: Rub on the injured area when swelling and/or inflammation are present.

Quickly relieves pain, reduces swelling and inflammation, and breaks up clotted blood and stagnant fluids in the injured area. Stimulates circulation of blood and fluids to help cells quickly repair damaged tissues, providing rapid pain relief and faster healing. Sinew Herbal Ice can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $39.95
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Chronic Sinew Liniment

Chronic Stage Treatment: Rub on the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather.

Strongly stimulates circulation to damaged tissues and promotes the healing of overstretched tendons, ligaments and muscles, thereby quickly relieving pain, stiffness and weakness. Sinew Injury Poultice, Sinew Relaxing Soak, and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Herbal Ice

Acute Stage Treatment: Apply on the injured area when swelling and/or inflammation are present.

This first-aid ice alternative poultice (balm) is used in place of ice to significantly speed up the recovery and healing process. Reduces redness, swelling, and inflammation while dispersing accumulated blood and fluids to help restore normal circulation to the injured area. It reduces the swelling and inflammation more effectively than ice, allowing you to more quickly regain normal range of motion. Acute Sinew Liniment can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Injury Poultice

Chronic Stage Treatment: Apply on the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather.

This poultice (balm) is particularly useful if your injured area is more painful in cold and damp weather. It significantly stimulates circulation to damaged tissues and further promotes the healing of overstretched tendons, ligaments and muscles. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Relaxing Soak and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $37.95
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Sinew Relaxing Soak

Chronic Stage Treatment: Used to soak the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather. If the injured area is too large or in an area that can’t be submerged in a pot of water, you can also saturate a towel in the liquid and apply it to the injured area.

This soak is particularly useful if you feel restricted mobility in your injured area. It is used to relax muscles, tendons and ligaments that are in spasm to reduce pain and stiffness and improve range of motion. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Injury Poultice and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Sports Massage Oil

This specially formulated massage oil is recommended for use before and after exercise, sports and strenuous activity. It penetrates deep into muscle layers to warm and stimulate muscles, increase circulation and relieve tightness, hence improving your performance and helping to prevent injury.
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Sinew Warming Soak

Chronic Stage Treatment: Used to soak the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather. If the injured area is too large or in an area that can’t be submerged in a pot of water, you can also saturate a towel in the liquid and apply it to the injured area.

This soak is particularly useful if your injured area is more painful and sensitive to cold or hurts more in cold weather. It is used to bring warmth into the injured area to drive coldness out of damaged tissues and increase local circulation, thereby relieving pain and stiffness in cold weather. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Injury Poultice and the Sinew Relaxing Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $23.95
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