Dance is an artistic expression, with each movement showing passion and beauty. When dancers perform, they reflect their inner beauty through intricate activities that move the audience. These movements require strength and hours of rehearsals to pull off a spell-bounding show. This vigorous training makes dance no less than any athletic sport because a dancer's body goes above and beyond through stretching, twirling, bending, rising, and much more.
Why Do Dancers Get Injuries Frequently?
Whether you dance for fun or have been a professional dancer for years, you will agree it takes a lot of dedication and practice to master moves. Sometimes these practice hours take a toll on our muscles, gifting us aches, pains, or even an occasional injury. In addition, most dancers dedicate days and weeks before a show in repeating moves to ensure they perform magically on stage. This steals away breaks or time-offs from them, and even if they feel strain in a muscle, they cannot afford to rest. This may seem like self-torture for an outsider, but dancers who share the passion know these sacrifices too well.
These injuries that result from constant practice with no chance for muscle recovery are known as overuse of muscle injuries. These are very common in the dancing community, where resting is an alien concept. These injuries result in excruciating pain, hindering the performer from showing their best on stage.
Another cause of injuries is a lack of warm-up before practice sessions. Fitness experts compel people to warm up before exercising as it awakens the muscles and gets them geared up for the exercise routine. The same rule works for dancers who need to give this time to their bodies to prepare for the storm ahead. One excellent tool for warming up the muscles is using a massage gun that wakes up the muscles and increases blood flow in the body, preventing injuries ahead. Also, try the Dance Buddy Percussion massager, which is perfect to prep your body before your next dance session.
Common Dance Injuries And Their Prevention
Prevent Ankle Sprains While Dancing
Ankle sprains are one of the most common traumatic injury for dancers. However, unlike overuse injuries, an ankle sprain occurs due to accidental landings. This happens when a dancer overstretches their ankle or makes a movement beyond the ankle's range of motion. This leads to tearing the ligaments, which can be due to ill-fitted shoes, twisted ankles or an improper landing from a jump. As typical, this injury is harrowing, and the ankle never returns to its pre-tearing strength.
Regular massaging before and after dance training helps prevent ankle sprains. During warm-up, massaging increases blood flow to ankles and builds muscle strength. Moreover, it improves the ankle's flexibility, equipping it for difficult stretches without the risk of sprains or restricted movements. Post dance sessions, massaging relaxes the muscles, increases blood circulation and improves overall ankle strength. Using a massage tool, like Dance Buddy's portable massager makes massaging before and after dance training quick, effective, and easy.
Prevent Snapping Hip Syndrome While Dancing
Snapping hip syndrome or a dancer's hip is an overuse of muscle injury that is also very common for dancers. It starts with an annoying popping in the hip, which many dancers don't take seriously. However, if not dealt with properly, this snapping can hinder performance-limiting movements for the dancers. This syndrome occurs due to tightness in the hip flexors due to constant stretching and bending of the hip muscles – a routine practice for dancers.
A massage gun works wonders in preventing Snapping hip syndrome. If dancers make it a habit to use the massage gun before rehearsals, it mobilizes the hip, releasing any tightness in the muscles. It also preps the hip flexors for bending and stretching during the dance practice. After the dance practice, using a massage gun helps relax hip muscles and increase blood circulation. This builds muscle strength and reduces pain accompanied by the snapping hip sensation.
Prevent Achilles Tendonitis While Dancing
Another overuse injury is Achilles Tendonitis. Mostly the victim is ballet dancers, but any form of dance can result in this inflammation. Achilles Tendon is the most prominent tendon that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. Dance practices require constant jumping and balancing on toes which outs this tendon is continuous stress. Very tight dance shoes, an uncomfortable dance floor or an accidental fall from a jump can also cause tightness. In addition, Achilles Tendonitis results in stiffness in the heel of the foot and calf, hindering movement for the dancer.
A percussion massager can help develop this condition if added to the warm-up routine. This massage gun increases the flexibility of the tendons, relieving any stiffness or strain in the lower leg. It also increases blood flow which improves the range of motion enabling the dancer to move to their heart's will. After the dance practice, using a massage gun also relieves restricted muscles alleviating stiffness in the calf muscles.
Preventing Jumper's Knee From Dancing (aka: Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome)
Another common yet painful overuse syndrome is the jumper's knee. A tendon goes from the kneecap to the shin called the patellar tendon. This tendon strains when it cannot endure the stress from your dance practices. It is called the jumper's knee because you feel intense pain when landing on a jump during training. This results when a dancer pushes their limit and stretches their muscles beyond their flexibility.
Warming up before dance practice is integral as it prepares your muscles for hard labor. Using a massage gun in your warm-up routine will improve flexibility, preparing the knee for difficult stretches. After the training, a massage gun helps release muscle tension and relieve pain in the knee due to restricted blood flow.Massaging using a portable massager works as a protective shield against injuries common in dancers. Including it in your warm-up routine and quick post-dance recovery will help prevent injuries that may inhibit you from dancing your heart out. Although ideal for prevention, massage guns should not be used in isolation to treat these injuries. It is advised to seek professional help for these syndromes to avoid further complications.