Medical Problems of Performing ArtistsMedical Problems of Performing Artists

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Injuries Among Italian DanceSport Athletes: A Questionnaire Survey

Leonardo Pellicciari, Daniele Piscitelli, Marilena De Vita, Lucia D'Ingianna, Serenella Bacciu, Giacomo Perno, Laura Lunetta, Eugenia Rosulescu, Cesare Giuseppe Cerri, Calogero Foti
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 31 Number 1: Page 13 (March 2016)

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Abstract: During training and competition, athletic dancers perform complex artistic movements that can lead to stress on the musculoskeletal system, making them subject to high risk of injury. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the prevalence, location, and nature of musculoskeletal injuries among dancesport athletes and to identify potential risk factors for injury. This cross-sectional study was performed at several national dancesport meetings in Italy. All 168 dancesport athletes who participated at the meetings were invited to complete a questionnaire related to injuries they may have suffered during the previous year; other information collected included demographic data (age, sex, height, weight), dance participation (discipline, categories), training (training duration, years since starting to dance), and injury (location, etiology). Of the 168 dancers, 153 completed the questionnaire. Of the 102 injuries reported, 73 athletes (47.7%) reported at least 1 injury. The locations of the injuries were the lower limbs (n=75, 73.5%), upper limbs (8, 7.8%), and spine (19, 18.7%). Significant differences were found in the injury location (p<0.01) as well as the nature of the injury (p<0.01). No significant differences were found between injured and non-injured athletes in demographic data, dance participation, and training variables (p>0.05). The results indicate that about half of the dancers reported at least 1 injury, with these being located particularly in the lower limbs and predominantly strain and sprain injuries. To reduce the prevalence of injuries, a prevention program may be indicated, with future research needed to identify appropriate strategies to prevent injuries.

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