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What Do We Know About How Acute Physical Fatigue Affects Movement in Dancers?: A Systematic Review of the Literature

Danielle N. Jarvis, Rachel E. Abergel
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 34 Number 3: Page 161 (September 2019)

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Abstract: BACKGROUND: Dancers are skilled athletes who train, rehearse, and perform extensively and often repeat the same sequences of movements in class or while learning and rehearsing choreography. Fatigue is thought to be related to an increased risk of injury due to altered movement patterns and distributions of joint forces. However, little research has examined the effects of fatigue on dance performance. AIMS: The purpose of this study was to review the relevant literature and characterize what is known about how the movement patterns of trained dancers are affected by induced acute physical fatigue. METHODS: Four electronic databases were searched for studies that investigated any protocol or method designed to induce acute fatigue and examined the effects fatigue had on dancers. Two reviewers independently assessed the methodological quality of and extracted data from the included studies. RESULTS: Of 440 search results, 12 studies were included in the final review. The mean score for methodological quality was 9.2/13. A variety of methods have been used in an effort to induce fatigue in dancers, but many of the fatigue protocols or movements studied were not specific to dance or have not been studied using a functional approach. Several studies identified changes in mechanics after fatigue, but a consistent pattern is not yet apparent in the literature. CONCLUSIONS: Studies examining fatigue in dancers have found contradictory results in terms of shifting contributions from the lower extremity joints, indicating that more research is needed to determine the effects of fatigue on jump mechanics in dancers.
https://doi.org/10.21091/mppa.2019.3022

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