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Dancing

Dancing

Dancing

It is important for dancers to look after themselves in terms of their health and appearance. However, prime assets that are often overlooked are the feet. It is vital for dancers to keep their feet in premium condition so they can perform to the best of their ability.

Dancers’ feet experience considerable wear and tear in comparison with the average person, due to long hours spent exercising, training and performing. The constant pounding of your feet on the hard floor places immense stress not only on your feet, but also your legs and spine, as the feet absorb the full impact of the dance move.

Common dancer foot ailments

Common foot problems amongst dancers include:
Metatarsalgia, Plantar fasciitis, Shin splints, Achilles tendonitis, calluses and blisters. Forefoot pain is very common and is due to the amount of moves that involve loading the forefoot eg landing on the forefoot after a jump. This in most cases can be alleviated or avoided with elastic metatarsal bandages or a simple orthotic (insole). This type of device will unload the pressure at the forefoot.

Friction blisters are another big problem for dancers and in severe cases (especially with young dancers) can stop them dancing. These are caused by your skin rubbing against something - usually a poor fitting shoe. Most friction blisters are filled with clear fluid. It is best to leave most small blisters alone.

To minimise blisters, firstly ensure that your shoes fit correctly. This does not always prevent blisters, especially after a long dance session, but ill-fitting footwear is the most common reason for blisters. If the blisters persist try wearing two pairs of socks to ease friction against foot or use an anti-blister foot cream before putting your socks on. This will make the skin more supple and able to resist friction. See for more information.

Copy reproduced with permission from www.foothealthcare.com