Research finds Irish dancers risk more injuries than other dancers

Irish dancers are at more risk of injury than other types of dancers.

Research finds Irish dancers risk more injuries than other dancers

Irish dancers are at more risk of injury than other types of dancers.

Researchers at the University of Limerick carried out a study on a group of championship level dancers and found that most had suffered at least one injury in the last year.

The research published in the Irish Medical Times also found they often continued to dance on their injury, mostly to their foot or ankle, despite being in pain.

The study claimed: "Dance is an extremely popular activity among adolescents, with a range of associated physical and psychological health benefits.

"However, pain/injury in young elite dancers is pervasive, and the underlying risk factors are poorly understood."

Researchers used the results of completed questionnaires from 37 championship-­level Irish dancers to ascertain any episode of pain or injury over the previous 12 months.

They found that 84% recorded at least one episode of pain or injury during the previous year with the lower limb, particularly the foot and ankle, most commonly affected.

The researchers concluded that: "This study demonstrates that elite adolescent Irish dance is associated with a substantial risk of pain/injury, which appears to be greater than that incurred by young dancers from other genres.

"Proposed explanations include inappropriate technique progression, unique choreographic features and an overly arduous calendar of competitive events."

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