Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers to close ×
Ballet Talk for Dancers

Back strength and flexibility after injury


Recommended Posts

I'm not sure if this belongs here or in the health section so please move if needed.


I injured my lower back during my musical theatre summer intensive this summer. I strained the joints in my lower back and the muscles started tensing up and it hurt terribly. It is now healing, I took 2 weeks off dance after all of my dance intensives to let it heal. (Just to let you know, my PT allows me to dance!)


The problem now is that I have neither strength nor flexibility left in my back, my cambré is basically non-existent at the moment. Are there stretches and strength excercises I can do to get my back into shape again?

Link to comment

I also think Pilates would be great, but I further think this is something to discuss with the PT!

Link to comment

A two week layoff isn’t likely to result in a significant loss of strength or flexibility. It might feel like you have lost some strength and flexibility and you might have but the loss should be minimal and you should regain the strength and flexibility you had rather quickly. If that isn’t the case, I might worry more about the injury you had and whether or not you have recovered. In rehabilitation a general rule is continue exercising as long as what you doesn’t result in any pain, so it is possible that your loss of strength and flexibility just means you haven’t fully recovered.


As to suggestions let me suggest a very specific pair of exercises I picked up from a video on the Dance Teacher website. Essentially it is combination of doing tendus to the back while lying facing down and then an exercise at the barre involving bending forward and backward. The description I gave was totally inadequate, so you really need to see the exercises. I saw this a while back and have no memory of who created the exercises. I have a vague recollection that the purpose of the exercises was to improve one’s arabesque using ideas from yoga. Go to the Dance Teacher website and look through the videos and I’m sure you can find it. Sorry for being lazy and not finding the link for you.


I’ve done these exercises quite often and like them. I’ve added a bit to make them my own and think they work both torso strength and flexibility in a ballet specific way.

Link to comment

It's not the 2 weeks off that resulted in loss of strength or flexibilty, but the injury. I'm still recovering, but the strain made me lose flexibility. I got cleared to dance again, so it's ready to be worked.

Link to comment

Majorlen, I also just recently injured my lower back in a musical rehearsal (crazy coincidence!). I was doing a lift and she got scared so we both went backwards and my back went with it. I was instantly sore and my back would NOT move any which way due to the injury.


However, I have a chiropractor whose worked on dancers before. She treated my back and gave me a set of exercises to strengthen my core and other stability muscles. Their office also has a rehab facility where they do physical therapy, massage and other services. That, combined with regular treatment has helped immensely.


Its been about 5 weeks since my injury and it has been a SLOW and frustrating process so far, but my cambre has now just started to get close to where it was and it hurts a lot less.


Just be patient. Talk to your PT and see if they have any exercises and be diligent and precise with those. Things will start to come back and you may even be a little stronger for it at the end.

Link to comment

Yes. Right now, focus on AB strength. :thumbsup: Pilates has some great floor exercises, or you can do some research and look for different sets that work all of those muscles. That's likely why the injury occurred to begin with- never underestimate the power of the belly!!!!!!!!!! :grinning:

Link to comment

Thanks for that suggestion. I kind of figured that might be the problem and started working my abs again. I have a good routine of ab exercises that works all of the muscles and I started doing it morning and evenings. I'm hypermobile and lack the strength to control my joints. I most likely lack the ab strength to control my back so I'm working on it.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...