The most commonly seen and treated Irish Dancing Injuries are listed below in the but as dancing is very dynamic, there are many associated injuries that do occur as well. Most of these injuries are easily treatable with focus on the specific dance techniques, flexibility and strength needed for injury free dancing.
What Are The Symptoms of Irish Dancing Injuries
Plantar Fasciitis – refers to a painful injury that happens when the tissue supporting the arch of the foot is is overused from repetitive or resisted motions, and ends up with inflammation and lots of pain. Dancers will usually feel most of the pain on the inside of the heel and along the length of the arch. Physiotherapy always almost include appropriate stretching, applying cold therapy, anti-inflammatory medicine as well as gentle deep tissue release (read more on plantar fasciitis physiotherapy management here)
Bunions – refers to a small deformation of the bone around the area of the big toe. For people who dance professionally or for fun, it’s often caused by wearing dance shoes that don’t fit well. What you need to do to avoid this is to make sure that your shoes fit properly or have an orthotic device fitted. In extreme cases, if the problem is persistent and painful, sometimes a referral to a orthopaedic surgeon or foot and ankle surgeon may be beneficial. Although surgery is only way to fully correct bunions, there are a number of things that physiotherapists can do to help (read more on bunion physiotherapy management here).
Shin splints – is a rather painful yet common dance injury. It is caused by mild tears of the connective tissue of the muscles in the shin region to the tibial (shin) bone. In dancing, these tears are caused by overworking the shin bone and overwork the lower limbs by landing jumps on hard surfaces, landing improperly and inflexibility. Dancers need to extra careful when performing jumps that when they land, they need to do it as safely and properly as possible to avoid putting stress on the shins (it’s the exertion that causes shin splints). If you’re a dancer and already suffering from this you can consider wearing compression bandage to provide extra support to the area, reduce strain and accelerate healing. Appropriate physiotherapy management including stretching, ultrasound therapy and sports massage can help to relieve of pain of shin splints and accelerate healing (read more on shin splints physiotherapy management here).
Achilles Tendonitis – the Achilles tendon is a very strong tendon and provides a lot of strength and stability for Irish Dancing, that’s why it’s important that dancers protect and care for their Achilles tendons. Achilles tendonitis is another common Irish Dancing Injury, causing the tendon to become irritated, inflamed and very painful. Common causes includes ill fitting dancing shoes, laces that had been tied too tightly, over-dancing (yes, there is such thing) and lacking rest. If you suffer from this painful injury, regular physiotherapy such as manual techniques, ultrasound therapy and adequate stretching to help reduce swelling and relieve pain.
If you do have Irish dancing injuries, do drop us a text and call and we'll do our best to serve.
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