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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Paramedical Maintenance When Not Injured


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Hello all,


I'm wondering how often your DKs go in for things like massages, or visit a chiropractor etc., when they are not specifically injured, or trying to rehab an injury. My dd (14), dances six days a week, and although she doesn't have a specific ailment, she does request this kind of maintenance when something seems tight, or restricted, or not quite right. I'm hoping to get a sense of what people whose children are of a similar age, and training intensity are doing with their DKs.



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hi there mamabear.


17DS has gone to massage periodically but usually due to a sub-acute problem (meaning not causing an issue but I get concerned about nipping it in the bud). We havent gone for regular preventative type therapy for two main reasons- money and time. I imagine that professionals go as part of prevention/management of ongoing problems but perhaps I am wrong?

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Dd did not have a professional massage until she was probably 16 or 17. She ended up having a ballroom dancer as her masseuse and had a fabulous experience as her complaints were readily understood. If the budget was unlimited, she would have added it to her weekly routine. However, finances do not allow for such luxuries! Perhaps one day when she is paid sufficiently or services like that are included in a contract.

When she lived at home, she did take private gyrotonics for about 2 years. Her second instructor was also a dancer. I feel as if they addressed these sorts of issues in their semi-weekly sessions. He would ask what was bothering her or what she was struggling with in class that week. Once again, this was not until she was a bit older at 16. She did not do any of these things when she was 14. There just wasn't time between dance and schoolwork and there was no pressing need.


But now that she is away from home as a trainee, there just isn't room in the budget for these extras.

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DDs visit a chiropractor for what he calls a "tune-up" several times a year. Usually before the summer, after the summer, before audition season and maybe one other time depending on how they are feeling. At 18, they are pretty aware of their general health and know when it would be helpful for this maintenance routine. They haven't tried massage as I'm sure that would feel lovely but not something I want to add to the budget. One of my DDs always add acupuncture when working on any particular issue. She feels like it helps the healing process. Other DD wants nothing to do with needles!

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When she was still living at home, older DD regularly saw a PT (with a background in dance) to head off issues with some problem areas. Now when she is on break, she still checks in with this PT for "maintenance." I know she has seen a PT where she is now training when she has had minor injuries, but I don't think she is there on a regular basis.


Younger DD saw a PT last year when she noticed an "unevenness" in her turnout, and it was definitely helpful to zero in on the issue before it became a problem. She, however, hasn't requested anything regular...yet.

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I wish DD could get in for those types of maintenance treatments, but between time and money it's not really possible. PT visits run me nearly $100 each as it is, and those are with a prescription and some insurance coverage. Regular massage would probably be really good for her (physically and mentally!) but again, time and money just aren't there for it.

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DD has a monthly chiropractic appointment. She has had this since she was about 13. She's 16 now. It started because she fell on her tailbone iceskating when she was around 12 and it seemed to be a problem so I took her in. She has continued ever since just to keep things all aligned and since she is under 18, he charges me very reasonably.

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I have one that has been away from home for almost three years. He has had access to PT if necessary, both with the academy and now job. But when he comes home we have a chiropractor he goes to for maintenance. The other DC just left, he only sees the chiropractor at home if needed and some access to PT treatment while away. It seemed while my oldest was at the academy other dancers in the program did not seek out PT if at all possible to keep from being sidelined.

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Thanks for chiming in on this folks! We were in the occasional visit, here and there category, until this year. Now, we appear to be creeping into the once per month category, in the spirit of nipping things in the bud. I was starting to think that it was excessive for her age, but perhaps it's not so outrageous.

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