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Comparison of Lower Extremity Muscle Flexibility in Amateur and Trained Bharatanatyam Dancers and Nondancers

Monica Sharma, Shibili Nuhmani, Deepti Wardhan, Qassim I. Muaidi
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 33 Number 1: Page 20 (March 2018)

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Abstract: OBJECTIVE: This study compared lower limb muscle flexibility between amateur and trained female Bharatanatyam dancers and nondancers.
METHODS: Subjects consisted of 105 healthy female volunteers, with 70 female Bharatanatyam dancers (35 trained, 35 amateurs) and 35 controls, with a mean (±SD) age of 16.2±1.04 yrs, height 155.05±4.30 cm, and weight 54.54±2.77 kg. Participants were assessed for range of motion (ROM) in hip flexion, hip extension, hip abduction and adduction, hip external rotation, hip internal rotation, knee flexion, knee extension, ankle dorsiflexion (DF), and ankle plantar flexion (PF) by using a standardized goniometer. To assess for significant difference between groups, one-way ANOVA was applied, and multiple comparisons were made using Bonferroni correction.
RESULTS: Trained dancers had a significantly greater hip flexion, extension, abduction, and external rotation ROM than amateurs and nondancers (p<0.05). Also, internal rotation and adduction were markedly less in trained dancers (p<0.05). Knee flexion, extension, and ankle DF were higher and ankle PF ROM was lesser in trained dancers. However, not much variation was found in ankle DF and PF between amateur dancers and nondancers (p>0.05).
CONCLUSION: Results showed that there are significant differences in lower limb muscle flexibility between trained and amateur Bharatanatyam dancers and nondancers. These differences may be due to individual dance postures such as araimandi and muzhumandi.

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