Foot and Ankle Injuries from Dancing

Dr. Corey Fox
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Director of Massapequa Podiatry Associates

Ballet FeetHere on Long Island, just a few minutes from the glow of Broadway’s lights, there’s no shortage of local theatres and studios for dancers of all ages and ability levels to practice and create. Whether you’re into ballet, ballroom, salsa, or any other form, there’s probably a class nearby for you.

Anybody who dances knows that their passion can be physically demanding. Dancers are athletes who require power, coordination, and endurance, just like a player of any other sport. And because dancers are athletes, they’re also susceptible to many of the same kinds of foot and ankle injuries that could happen to a runner or basketball player.

Some common dancing injuries or resulting foot problems include:

  • Stress fractures. The repeated stresses of jumps, running, and other impacts can wear down the bone, causing small cracks to form. Although less serious than a full blown fracture, stress fractures can be quite painful and may take a month or two of complete rest to heal.
  • Ankle sprains. These are particularly common for ballet dancers, but can occur in any style, especially those which require quick weight shifts or toe points.
  • Tendinitis. Repetitive motions can often cause tendons to swell, stretch, and tear. Achilles tendinitis (in and around the heel or calf) and posterior tibial tendonitis (the shin) are common, but far from the only ones.
  • Bunions and hammertoes. Although not always thought of as “injuries,” these progressive foot deformities can develop in dancers due to restrictive or unsupportive footwear, as well as from repeatedly placing a disproportionate amount of weight and force on the forefoot or toes.

At Massapequa Podiatry Associates, Dr. Corey Fox is dedicated to helping dancers overcome their foot and ankle pain and get back on the mat. We offer a wide variety of conservative treatment options, including physical therapy, orthotics, footwear modifications, and other techniques to help you feel better and prevent future dancing injuries. We also provide surgical treatment if less aggressive approaches are exhausted and prove insufficient. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call 516-541-9000.

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