• Bilateral differences on dancers’ dynamic postural stability during jump landings

      Clarke, Frances; Koutedakis, Yiannis; Wilson, Margaret; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2020-12-01)
      Purpose: Although traditional dance training aims to train dancers’ legs equally, the recognised practice of predominately starting and repeating exercises on one side more than the other has led to suggestions that technique classes may cause lateral bias. Such an imbalance could lead to a greater risk of injury, however, despite this potential risk, little is known about the effects of bilateral differences on dancers’ postural stability during jump landings, a key dynamic action in dance. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the effects of possible bilateral differences on dynamic postural stability during single-leg landing using a time to stabilisation protocol. Methods: Thirty-two injury-free female dance university undergraduates (19+1.9 years; 164.8+6.7cm; 62.6+13.6kg) volunteered. They completed a two foot to one-foot jump over a bar onto a force platform stabilising as quickly as possible. The landing leg was randomly assigned, and participants completed three trials for each leg. Results: No significant differences in dynamic postural stability between the right and left leg were revealed and poor effect size was noted (p>0.05): MLSI: t= -.04, df= 190, p= .940 (CI= -.04,.04, r2 = 0); APSI: t= .65, df= 190, p= .519 (CI= -.06-,.12, r2 =.09); VSI: t= 1.85, df= 190, p= .066 (CI= -.02,.68, r2 = .27); DPSI: t= 1.88, df= 190, p= .061 (CI= -.02, .70, r2 30 = .27). Conclusion: The results of this study on jump landings do not support the notion that dance training may cause lateral bias with its associated risk of injury, although lateral bias may be present elsewhere. Furthermore, dancers’ perceptions of their leg dominance did not correlate with their ability to balance in single-leg landings or to absorb GRFs often associated with injury. Even when unequal training exists, it may not have detrimental effects on the dancer’s postural stability
    • Injury occurrence in hip hop dance: An online cross-sectional cohort study of breakers

      Tsiouti, Nefeli; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2021-03-01)
      Breaking is the most physical of the hip hop dance styles, but little research has examined the health and well-being of its participants. Using a cross-sectional recall design a self-report online health and wellbeing survey was open for a 5-month period. 320 adult break dancers (16% professional, 65% student/recreational) with a minimum of 6-months experience completed the survey. The main outcome measures were self-report injury incidence and aetiology and training hours. Respondents (52%) trained between 4-9 hours per week over 3 days; significantly less than theatrical dancers. 71.1% reported a dance-related injury and 44.5% reporting being currently injured at time of survey. Self-reported types of injury were significantly different from other dance genres; the most frequently injured were arms/hands (40.6%), shoulders (35.9%), knees (32.2%), neck (22.8%) and ankles (15.6%). When injured, 29% respondents either took their own preventative steps or continued to dance carefully, 20% sought medical professional help; “yourself” was the most cited influence on returning to dance after injury (47%). The current survey highlighted the potential differences between different dance genres particularly regarding injury incidence and aetiology.
    • Neuromuscular training in pre-professional ballet dancers: A feasibility randomised controlled trial

      Kolokythas, Nico; Metsios, George S.; Galloway, Shaun; Allen, Nick; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2022-12-31)
      Introduction: It is well documented that there is high prevalence of injuries in preprofessional and professional ballet dancers. Current evidence from high in quality and quantity research on injury prevention in sport, indicates that interventions can reduce injury risks by 30 to 50%. Injury prevention research in dance, is limited. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility (adherence, fidelity, and practicality) of a randomised controlled trial for the utilisation of neuromuscular training in pre-professional ballet dancers. Methods: A convenience sample of 22 pre-professional ballet dancers were randomised into the intervention and the control group. The intervention group took part in a neuromuscular based training workout, five times per week before the ballet class, for ten weeks. The intervention was an adaptation of the FIFA 11+, an injury prevention intervention and is called 11+ Dance. The intervention consisted of low intensity bodyweight exercises, lasted 20-30 minutes and was performed daily. Results: Intervention adherence was 38±8%, with higher participation at the beginning of the study. Attendance for the pre- and post testing was low 45% and 36% for the intervention and control group, respectively, mainly due to injury. There were no adverse effects reported, however, the participants reported delayed onset muscle soreness at the beginning of the intervention, indicating that there may be a potential training effect. Fear of muscle hypertrophy and fatigue were also reported as reasons for attrition. The repeated measures ANOVA revealed statistically non-significant differences for the CMJ F(1,9)= 0.36, p = .564, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2 = .04, RSI F(1, 7)= 0.02, p= .885, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2= 0.003, and IMTP F(1, 12)= 0.002, p= 0.967, 𝜂𝜂𝑝𝑝 2= .000. Conclusion: The results of the study, together with the feedback from the participants suggest that some protocol modifications are necessary, for the feasibility of a randomised controlled trial in a pre-professional setting. The current trial has produced valuable information for the intervention frequency and load prescription.
    • Perceived severity and management of low back pain in adult dancers in the United States

      Henn, Erica; Smith, Tina; Ambegaonkar, Jatin; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2022-06-30)
      Introduction: Low back pain (LBP) lifetime prevalence in dancers reportedly ranges from 17%-88%. LBP can have negative secondary consequences on dancers’ lives and careers. Still, how LBP impacts dancer function and medical care-seeking behaviors, and whether these issues differ across dance genres, is understudied. Materials and Methods: 289 ballet, modern, and hip-hop dancers and teachers (median age=20.3 years; range:18-69) in the United States age 18 years and older completed an online 24 question survey assessing LBP related self-reported injury history, impact on their lives, and management strategies. We defined LBP as occurrence of acute or chronic pain in the lumbar or sacral regions of the back. Results: 257 participants (88.9% of 289 total) reported at least one instance of LBP during their lifetime and 220 participants reported LBP in the prior four weeks. Of these 220, 72 (32.7%) had LBP severe enough to limit their activities of daily living. Of the 213 who had LBP and danced during that time, 89 (41.8%) reported that LBP limited their dancing. Pain intensity (median:4 on a 0-10 scale, IQR:3.0) and LBP prevalence were similar across dance genres. Dancers sought multiple medical professionals, most often chiropractors (n=94, 33.8%), medical doctors (n=77, 27.7%), and physiotherapists (n=60, 21.6%). 90 dancers (35.0% of those with LBP) never sought medical care for their LBP at all. Dancers who did seek care reported higher pain intensities (median:4, IQR:3.8) than those who did not (median:3, IQR:3.0). Conclusion: Overall, most participants did suffer from LBP. LBP negatively impacts dancers’ everyday activities and dancing. Pain intensity and loss of function may impact care-seeking. Our findings highlight the need for all dance stakeholders to educate dancers about their health, provide resources for dancer healthcare, and proactively create an environment that supports injury reporting behaviors in dancers.
    • The relationship of year group and sex on injury incidence and countermovement jump in adolescent ballet dancers: a cross-sectional analysis

      Kolokythas, Nico; Metsios, George S.; Galloway, Shaun; Allen, Nick; Wyon, Matthew (J.Michael Ryan Publishing Inc., 2022-06-30)
      Introduction: Pre-professional ballet training involves long training hours from an early age that could influence young dancers’ physical performance and injury incidence. This cross-sectional analysis investigated the relationship of year group and sex, with countermovement jump, and injury incidence (primary outcome) in adolescent ballet dancers at a pre-professional dance school. Method: Countermovement jump (CMJ) height was recorded at the start of the academic year on 179 participants (M=68, F=111) spread across eight year-groups. Injury aetiology and incidence was prospectively recorded over a six-month period (Sep - Feb) by the medical team using a time-loss definition. Results: Between-subject statistically significant differences were reported for sex (F=101.49; p<0.001), year group (F=12.57; p<0.001) and sex*year group (F=9.22; p<0.001). Mean CMJ across the year groups ranged between 24.7-41.3cm for males and 23.5-25.1cm for females. Injury incidence per dancer was 0.84 (CI:0.13,1.56) and injury incidence per 1000hrs dance was 1.94 (CI:1.63, 2.25). No statistically significant differences, between sexes or year groups, were reported for injury incidence per 1000 dance hours, and time-loss. Hours dancing was statistically significantly positively associated with CMJ (r=.481, p<0.05) and negatively associated with injury incidence (r=-.253, p<0.05) for males; for females it was positively associated with time loss (r=.254, p<0.05). Conclusion: Even though CMJ was cross-sectionally monitored, the expected increased physical abilities in males as they grew older and progressed through their training was observed. Females did not indicate similar increase in their physical ability, but they seemed to become more susceptible to injuries as they grow older. The lack of this speculative physiological development for the females may be associated with the ballet-only approach in their training. The use of CMJ as an injury screening tool may be limited, however, it could still be used as a tool to monitor physiological and fundamental motor skill development of adolescent dancers, as jumping is an integral part of ballet.