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Frustrated! forced turnout and conflcting messages


Guest fille'smom

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Guest fille'smom

Dancing daughter went to the trainer at her SI today because her hips hurt. Conclusion-she is being asked to force her turnout in class. Trainer said to work on flexibilty and not turn her feet out so much in 5th position. Of course my daughter doesn't want to do this because she doesn't want to appear uncooperative in class.

:wink: Just yesterday an instructor told my daughter that flexibilty has nothing to do with her turnout. I am ready to GIVE UP!!! If she didn't love it so much I'd say forget it!

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It is now up to your daughter to convey what the trainer has told her to the instructor before class. A happy medium has to exist somewhere.

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fille'smom, is it just one of your daughter's teachers that is saying and pushing this? I know that generally speaking the students at CPYB have many teachers throughout the course of their summer program.

 

Major Mel Johnson's suggestion sounds like your daughter's best bet. When it comes from a health professional, and this one I take it is associated with the program, it does usually work well - or should.

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Guest fille'smom

DD says "a couple" of her teachers at the SI ask her force her feet closed in fifth. Yes BW - there are lots of teachers, many if not most of whom are not on staff at CPYB. I think DD only has the same teacher twice out of 20 classes per week. Don't get me wrong-she's lovin the heck out of being there. I just don't want her to hurt herself.

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fille's mom--I can identify with your experience, as my son is in the exact same position. In fact, he has not yet even gone to the trainer--well, actually, he went twice, but the person was not there either Tuesday or Wednesday. He has been reluctant to miss classes because he can't make them up, and he doesn't want to miss men's or partnering class.

 

I told him he had to go today no matter what!

 

Our kids have the same teachers for these classes; it's the Saturday class that has been most problematic for my child, and my he does not know how to handle the situation without appearing confrontational. However, he has mentioned that other teachers force turnout. He has had to take sort of a passive aggressive approach, by gradually turning back in to protect his knees. I too, have thought that we might have to take him out, or that his injuries would require that he have to leave.

 

My own feeling is that these kids are placed in a difficult, if not unfair, position in this situation. Certainly they can cope to some degree, and always remain respectful. However, if they feel that they cannot effectively succeed in this, there needs to be some adult support. Perhaps a note from the trainer? Help from an RA? It would be nice if there were some mechanism for dealing with this that would make the process less stressful.

 

Also, if this were my training program and parents were feeling frustrated and children were being injured as a result of forced turnout, I would want to know about it.

 

I would certainly welcome advice as well. I know I have the parent "protective" position. I'd like to know how to make this a "positive learning experience" for my son!

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Perhaps one of the parents could call the school to discuss the situation with the person in charge of the staff.

 

At Harid we receive written assessments from our physical therapist for every child seen and given advisement from the PT regarding the student's abilities at that time. We must follow the advise of the PT and so must the student.

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vrsfanatic--that proceedure sounds simple and effective, and I will suggest it to CPYB if I am able to give them feedback. I probably will contact the program after I hear what comes out of my son's meeting with the trainer if it seems necessary. I will be there on Sunday for a visit.

 

Fille's mom--if there's anything I can do for your daughter while I'm there, have her let my son know and he can contact me! I'm sure she knows who he is; he gave her a foot massage.

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Guest fille'smom
I'm sure she knows who he is; he gave her a foot massage.

Ummmm well I don't know what to say about that. It might be someone else your thinking of. I'd be shocked if my shy girl let a boy touch her - especially her "ugly" feet. :blushing: I'll be sure and ask her about this!!! :D

 

Sounds like your son's pain is more severe than my dd. From what she says, her hips hurt during class and sometimes feel like the "bone is rubbing" when she walks. Yesterday the trainer recommended that she stretch, stretch, stretch. Also ice after class and ibuprofen if she feels like she needs it. I want to give her a chance to take responsibility for talking to the instructors when it's needed. If, like you, I felt that there was a real problem (child limping around, missing class , mention of the pain with every call home...) I would definately give the office a call and try to get some feedback from the trainer. I watched class for one day last week. The instructors asked if anyone had been to the trainer, before the class began, so that they were aware of any problems/limitations that the dancers might be experiencing. I would encourage your son to let the teacher know as I have done with my daughter. I hope that your son is getting some relief!

Let us know how he is doing.

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Just a quick question for fille'smom and Vision: what exactly are the credentials of "the trainer"? Is this person a physical therapist? A sports medicine type of person? I'm just not familiar with this term.

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BW--I checked the CPYB website, and the home page says that a physical therapist is available for one and a half hours daily except for Sunday's. I checked the listing of staff for the summer and couldn't find the name of a physical therapist. There was a trainer listed, who is a pilates instructor with a background in dance, but I don't know who the children actually see for injuries. Maybe fille'smom has more information. My son has not yet been seen. I have been on the phone here at home with one of my son's teacher's, who contacted a physical therapist who specializes in dance injuries--I'm just waiting for feedback from the trainer or therapist who sees him there.

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fille'smom--sorry I assumed that your daughter was the child my son knows! It must be another girl. I'm just waiting for my DS to get feedback from the trainer before getting involved, should that be necessary.

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Echoing above - re: best tack is to speak outside of class with teacher and tell them trainer (p.t., doctor) instructions or restrictions. Always best to get such restrictions/instructions/explanations in writing from those on the p.t./medical side of the aisle, as it takes any ambivalence out of the discussion. But finally, I would suspect that most of us have had at least one encounter (of the first or second degree - i.e. our own child, or another that we have been friends with the parents) that has had a teacher along the way who bulldozed over such instructions OR did not take persistent pain (whining! complaining!) seriously and failied to urge the student to seek medical advice.

 

I think in any "elite" art/endeavor/sport the actual participant - tough as it is in adolesence (sp) - needs to ultimately own control of their long term interests and decline to do something if they have found - based upon sound advice - it to be detrimental to their long term goals and interests. At 12 or 13 (??) if one of these summer teachers thinks the student is uncooperative on a issue (where student has given a medical explanation), so what?

 

Perhaps it is also part of the rising dancer learning what kind of pain/conditions is o.k. to train or perform through - and what is not.

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Guest fille'smom

More info today from dd. At CPYB after seeing the trainer, dancers are given a note to take back to class with them with any prescribed limitation(s). I'm not sure what credentials the "trainer" has but I assume that he is qualified at such a large well known program.

 

DD said that she has 4 teachers who are asking her, or positioning her, to force her turnout. She gave an instance when they were told to sit on the floor, facing the wall, feet on the wall in 5th. The instructor then went from student to student pushing their feet into 5th. I don't understand why a knowledgable, qualified instructor would do this. Maybe the kids just aren't telling when they are in pain. I suppose they all want to acheive a "perfect 5th". I told my dd to deliver the trainer's note to the instructors and quit hurting her body!

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I won't comment on the classroom practice you've described, except to say that I generally disagree with it, but it is entirely correct for your DD to convey a message from one department (physical training) to another (artistic training) regarding health and safety.

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:) Major Mel, you are too kind - in this day and age I find the practice of forcing turn-out archaic and frankly appalling. Sorry, I can't bite my tongue any longer - especially when there are debilitating injuries as a result of this practice.
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