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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Is physical/medical examination a part of the college audition?

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Hi! We live in Europe and my DD16 is thinking about applying for college in the US. She is interested in a school with a strong ballet program. There are so much great information on this forum and we are learning a lot.

My DD has auditioned for vocational schools in Europe and a part of the audition process is a physical examination by a dance PT or an orthopedic doctor, as well as a detailed medical history. Do they do something similar when you audition in the US? She is looking at schools like Butler, IU, Utah and Oklahoma.  

As my daughter has had an injury (now corrected by surgery), we are also curious about how they deal with injuries in college programs. Is there a lot of focus on injury prevention? Do the schools have PTs that work with the dancers or do the students have to find their own PTs and pay for treatments? Our experience is that teachers and dance schools are very different when it comes to how they deal with injured students and how they work to prevent injuries. Some make the students push through the pain while others give them the time that it takes to rehab. I guess we are wondering if there is a common approach to those issues at American colleges.

Edited by Snowmom
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I have never heard of a physical exam being part of the process of college auditions for dance programs in the U.S.

Colleges vary in their approach to injury and the availability of PT services.  My daughter’s BFA program has multiple PTs on staff and was very supportive/responsive when she had a minor injury this fall.  I think this is common, but I wouldn’t assume anything—I would definitely ask questions about this at schools that you are researching.

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Thank you for your reply!

It is good to hear that it is common to have PTs as part of the staff. I will definitely add it to the list of questions to ask each school if we get to that point. 


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Having been through multiple auditions with my three daughters, they were never required to have an exam as part of the audition process.  However, my daughter at U of Utah has to sign a waiver each year due to the possibility of injury.  At Utah, they have a trainer available daily on site, and a PT once a week (but is also available in her office daily.)


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