A dancer relies on the foot and ankle for balance, support, and expression, so it is essential that they are in great health and condition. The foot has 26 bones, 33 joints, and over 100 ligaments, tendons, and muscles, and they all work in a complex manner to support the entire body. Unlike many athletes who have supportive footwear, dancers only wear thin-soled shoes, if any, and therefore do not have protection to absorb shock and stress from the hard dance floors. It is not surprising that dancers, who endure a lot of stress from the technical positions and the demanding, rigorous movements, battle all types of foot and ankle injuries. Blisters, bunions, tendinitis, sesamoiditis, ankle sprains and fractures are just some of the most common injuries.
Here are 5 foot care tips for those who dance:
- Always begin with stretching and warm ups before a class and end with a cool down to decrease chances of strains and other injuries.
- Keep feet clean and dry, and trim toenails short and straight across to prevent ingrown toenails.
- Take proper care of blisters and other injuries. In most cases, blisters do not need to be popped but should be loosely covered while they heal.
- Protect your toes with taping, toe pads, or toe spacers.
- Support your feet in regular shoes with custom orthotics, and make sure that you buy shoes that fit properly.
Whether you take a class once a month or dance professionally, chances are you will experience a foot or ankle injury. In order maintain healthy and strong feet, it is important to have an experienced board-certified podiatrist like Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico be your ally. Dr. D’Amico at Syracuse Podiatry specializes in Podiatric Medicine and Surgery and has the knowledge and experience to handle all types of foot and ankle conditions. If you have a dance injury, have heel pain or need diabetic foot care, Dr. D’Amico and his friendly staff are here to help! Please call (315) 446-3668 to make an appointment at our office in Fayetteville.