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Jun 08, 2020 / Sports Medicine

Tips for Dancers: Finding Credible Resources for At-Home Dance-Specific Training

Keeping Up With the Count - This content is provided by a multi-disciplinary team of staff that are passionate about keeping young dancers safe and healthy. 

Everyone is doing their best to make valuable resources accessible to children and teens. Many programs are generously offering free online training in addition to advice in formal platforms and social media. Much like you would assess online resources for personal safety, evaluating the quality of at home exercise programs also requires thoughtful consideration.

Help your dancer evaluate options using these tips 
Good material typically includes: 
  • Why a certain exercise or activity should be performed?
  • Which muscles you should feel activate during each movement?
  • Modification options to make the movement easier or harder.
  • Tips to ensure proper technique to ensure safety and effectiveness.
Trustworthy resources for young dancers to have:
  • Awareness of risks associated with dance-related movements and skills for children and teens.
  • Dance experience, teaching experience or a health care background. 
Teaching and exercise instruction experience is key. Professional dancers, for instance, have mastered how certain exercises and techniques work best for their own body, but may have difficulty instructing others if they do not have teaching experience. Look for sources that are supported by professional dance companies or other institutions like IADMS. They are featuring suggestions on a new page - learn more.

Getting Started
Julia Buckelew, P.T., D.P.T., O.C.S., advises dancers to keep these important principles in mind when starting a new program or training routine:
  • Always try new activities in a slow, controlled manner. 
  • Ensure you feel okay during and after a new activity (no excessive soreness lasting > 48 hours or acute pain).
  • Limit the number of new activities per day just in case a new exercise is not the best for your body and current fitness level.
Julia is a physical therapist at the Scottish Rite for Children Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Center in Frisco. As an orthopedic certified specialist, she provides rehabilitation and injury prevention services for dancers and many other young athletes. She is passionate about improving movement quality and efficiency to promote success and longevity in every athlete’s career. 
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