Physiotherapy For Ballet
Ballet is a technically challenging athletic art form with specific demands of precision, strength and flexibility. It involves the whole body, often in extreme positions, and with a high degree of repetition.
The Ballet Physio works with dancers for two main reasons. Rehabilitation of injury and to return the dancer to full class is the most well-known. However, increasingly dancers attend periodic consultations in order to problem-solve any restrictions in facility which can impede technique development. Such facets of a dancer's natural physique such as flexibility, strength, control, coordination, and balance can all be enhanced by targeted exercise. With six (6) years' experience at the Royal Ballet School, Luke is very familiar with the physical requirements of high level training.
Dancers start with a 1-hour assessment to diagnose the injury, devise a plan including class modifications, and to start on treatment.
Treatment sessions are often regular in the early stages to ensure the fastest return to full class possible. Frequently, half-hour consultations are sufficient for injury treatment alone. Guidance will be given regarding class progression.
The Ballet Physio is happy to work with ballet teachers and other health care practitioners to enhance rehabilitation and keep everyone updated - as required.
FACILITY ENHANCEMENT / PREHABILITATION
Dancers start with a 1-hour comprehensive ballet assessment to determine which areas of their facility would benefit from improvement - all with the aim of enhancing their technique. Teachers commonly request specific areas to be looked at. The Ballet Physio can assess whether there is a restriction to movement due to flexibility, or strength, or coordination. A plan will be discussed and some initial exercises given.
Follow up sessions are usually 1-hour in duration due to the complexities of balletic movement. A second session is usually advised within a week or two to ensure correct performance and to add additional homework. Thereafter it is usually most productive to schedule regular but infrequent follow-up sessions (for example every 4-6 weeks, or at each school break) to progress the plan, to troubleshoot any new issues identified in class, and to check on any minor 'niggles' before they progress into an overuse injury.
It is sometimes useful to arrange an occasional Studio Session where we have the space to analyse some of the higher-level skills such as pirouettes or allegro - again with a view of applying the skills acquired in the exercise programme and to assess any points requiring 'fine-tuning' from a facility enhancement standpoint.
Further to private prehabilitation sessions, the Ballet Physio frequently runs Physical Conditioning Classes (see the 'Virtual-Physio' page for upcoming sessions). Current patients can simply sign up, but a brief 15-minute class-safety assessment needs to be done before the class for dancers who have not seen the Ballet Physio individually (due to professional requirements). Please contact Luke on to arrange a time.
Additionally, the Ballet Physio runs Biomechanics Clinics from time to time on various topics (Allegro, Pirouettes, Pointe, Partnering, Extensions etc) - please see the 'Classes' page for details. He also works with ballet schools to deliver workshops within their own intensives.