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Associations Between Balance Ability and Dance Performance Using Field Balance Tests

Frances Clarke, Yiannis Koutedakis, Margaret Wilson, Matthew Wyon
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 34 Number 3: Page 154 (September 2019)

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Abstract: AIMS: Although balance is a key element of dance, it remains to be confirmed which balance components are associated with dance performance. The aim of this study was to assess the associations between different field balance tests and dance performance in an in-house measure in ballet, contemporary, and jazz genres. METHODS: 83 female undergraduate dance students (20±1.5 yrs, 163.04±6.59 cm, 60.97±10.76 kg) completed the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT), the airplane test, a dance-specific pirouette test, the modified Romberg test, and the BioSway Balance System. Results from these balance tests were compared to the participants' technique and repertoire performance scores in ballet, contemporary, and jazz genres. RESULTS: Ballet scores were best predicted by SEBT 90° and Romberg for technique (r=0.4, p=0.001, SEE ±2.49) and Romberg, SEBT 90°, and SEBT 225° for repertoire (r=0.51, p=0.001, SEE±1.99). Contemporary data indicated SEBT 90° and Romberg for technique (r=0.37, p=0.001, SEE±2.67) and SEBT 225° for repertoire (r=0.27, p=0.015, SEE±2.29). Jazz indicated SEBT 90°, Romberg, SEBT 315°, and SEBT 225° for technique (r=0.51, p=0.001, SEE±2.28) and SEBT 225° and Romberg for repertoire (r=0.41, p=0.001, SEE±2.29). CONCLUSION: The present study suggests that balance ability has a limited influence on dance performance, with existing field balance tests demonstrating low to moderate associations with dance technique and repertoire.
https://doi.org/10.21091/mppa.2019.3026

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