Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

Any dancers?

Posted by CarolineKi on 5/12/01 at hrmin (047592)

hello!
Are there any other dancers here? I'm looking for ideas from other dancers. I'm not considering a professional career,but I'm the only in my studio who has such a severe case of plantar faciitis. My teacher recommended rolling my foot along a coke bottle, but that didn't do much. I found a great site that sells inserts for your ballet slippers,they are about 60 bucks, and I'm cheap so, does anyone know if they work? The site is http://orthlab.com/ . Any other ideas for dancers?
Thanks!

Re: Any dancers?

Barb-NY on 5/12/01 at 16:14 (047608)

Hi Caroline, welcome to the board. I'm not a dancer, but I am a PF sufferer. The only advice I can offer you is to stop dancing for now, especially since you've described your condition as being severe. You have a condition which requires long term healing and dancing will not let you accomplish this. Please read the heel pain book on this board.

Have you seen a doctor? If not, you need to see one asap. A foot specialist such as a Podiatrist, Orthopedist or other Foot and Ankle Specialist will be able to properly diagnose your problem and offer a treatment plan. Rest (being off your feet as much as possible) is the key to faster recovery.

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/12/01 at 18:28 (047610)

i wrote the New York Balet last year and asked them how their dancers were treated for PF. There response was they could not give out medical information.

Re: Any dancers?

bg cped on 5/12/01 at 18:38 (047613)

I believe that the NY Ballet has a specific guy that treats the dancers, not sure think his name is myerson?

Re: Any dancers?

Dr. Zuckerman on 5/13/01 at 03:41 (047626)

Taping and special ballet shoes with specific orthotic can do wonders. Resting is very important also. I use to treat ballet dancers and I understand the word rest isn't part of the picture. If you live in the New York area I can refer you to a specialist that treats alot of ballet dancers

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/13/01 at 09:24 (047634)

is it bess myerson?

Re: Any dancers?

bg cped on 5/13/01 at 09:38 (047635)

no it is mark, DR Z may know of him

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/13/01 at 13:04 (047644)

i bet dr z knows more about bess meyerson.

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/14/01 at hrmin (047720)

Hey sorry I haven't checked all weekend! I was doing exactly what you said to do, REST! Dr. Z is right even for a non-pro dancer, rest and quitting is unheard of. Right now is very very bad time to stop considering we have a performance and many extra hours of practice.I was thinking of quitting my part time job( 3 hours of work on my feet,for five days), but I need the money for my trip to Rome. I'm kicking myself now, I really can't wait to go to Rome but it hit me that we are going to be doing ALOT of walking. So I don't think there is much chance of getting the rest I really need, I am doing the best I can. I have been to a podiatrist, got some custom insoles five months ago.Last friday I went to another doctor because I was having a really bad week of pain, redness, ect. He gave me celebrex, which has really helped. So now all I need to do is get thoes ballet insoles and find a good pair of shoes to take for Rome. Heres my big question, what kind of shoe would everyone recommend for long traveling? I'm looking for something w/ankle support, but it has to breath because it will be summer, and should I still wear my insoles w/ these shoes?
thanks!
Caroline

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/14/01 at hrmin (047725)

Hey
I just wanted to say from a dancers point of view, that you learn to live with pain. There are alot of Drs out there that aren't very willing to help dancers, so pain becomes part of your life. Its always interesting to hear about medical solutions and advances for dancers but there is not much hope for most of us. The best thing is that the ballet industry is becoming more open minded to the health of dancers.I once read an artical on a russian company in the 50's that would prohibit dancers from bending their knees after performing leaps and jumps. That meant that all shock from landing would be absorbed in your knees. There was a quote from a former dancer of the company that said most of the performers were in wheelchairs and walkers by their 50s. Thank God things have changed! There are more products availble today than twenty years ago. I know that my teachers are learing as much info about the safest techniques for pointe.They are very knowledgeable on determining the correct toe shoes, to minimize damage to the feet. Toe shoes have also come along way! There are so many shapes and brands made for different feet. Still, it's a big fat fact of life that dancers are going to have foot problems.I really don't hear much about dancers w/ PF I think thats because its just part of pain. Dancers are not very trustworthy of doctors! Anyways thats why I came here, I would like to learn more about PF and how I could work with it in ballet. I would be willing to experiment if anyone has ideas!
Thanks!
Caroline

Re: Any dancers?

Julie on 5/15/01 at 02:45 (047762)

Hi Caroline

I don't have in my head all the posts on this thread, so I can't remember if you or anyone has said anything about taping.

Read the heel pain book, and in Part 2 you'll find instructions for several taping techniques. Try them. Taping supports the arch, replacing the support it has lost due to the injury to the fascia. It can relieve the pain, but more importantly it is a means of resting the fascia, which contributes to its healing. Whether it would work in this way in your case, I don't know, but it might help to relieve the pain, so it's worth a try. You may already be taping while dancing: I mean try taping all the time, for ordinary walking and activity.

Yes, dancers are going to have foot problems. And back problems. I know very little about dancing, but I am a yoga teacher and I have taught several erstwhile ballet dancers who have developed severe spinal problems. This is mainly owing to the pressure on the lumbar discs and nerves due to the insistence on that beautiful, graceful back arch. Please be careful: you have the whole of your life to live.

I think you might find it useful to start yoga. The yoga postures work holistically; they re-balance the body and can help to alleviate the destructive effects of ballet. However, you need a good, well-trained teacher who will be responsive to your particular needs and give you guidance on what to do and what not to do, and how to work: you're so used to pushing your body past its natural limits that you wouldn't know yourself, immediately, how far to go in the postures. So you need a teacher who can give individual attention: that means a small class (not more than 12-15).

When you're not dancing, rest as much as possible. Wear good, supportive shoes all the time. For Rome (lucky you!) I'd suggest a good pair of trainers (sneakers) with plenty of support and cushioning. And yes, of course wear your orthotics in them. Before you buy shoes, check them by holding the heel counter in one hand, the toe in the other, and bending the shoe to bring the heel and toe closer together. The shoe should bend only at the metatarsal, where your foot bends; if it bends in the middle, it's isn't a good shoe (with thanks to Richard CPed for his recent description of this!)

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/15/01 at hrmin (047805)

Thanks for the tips!
I have a great ballet instructor who uses many yoga stretches in our warm ups, before we got to barre work. I think I'm pretty lucky to have an intructor who takes a great amount of time todo that!
Thanks again!

Re: Any dancers?

Julie on 5/16/01 at 01:36 (047901)

Caroline, that's very good, but not quite what I meant. Doing yoga stretches as warm-ups for dance or sport isn't the same as practising yoga, which works, holistically, to balance and bring into harmony body, mind, and spirit. What I felt was that yoga practice might help you on all these levels.

Re: Any dancers?

Barb-NY on 5/12/01 at 16:14 (047608)

Hi Caroline, welcome to the board. I'm not a dancer, but I am a PF sufferer. The only advice I can offer you is to stop dancing for now, especially since you've described your condition as being severe. You have a condition which requires long term healing and dancing will not let you accomplish this. Please read the heel pain book on this board.

Have you seen a doctor? If not, you need to see one asap. A foot specialist such as a Podiatrist, Orthopedist or other Foot and Ankle Specialist will be able to properly diagnose your problem and offer a treatment plan. Rest (being off your feet as much as possible) is the key to faster recovery.

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/12/01 at 18:28 (047610)

i wrote the New York Balet last year and asked them how their dancers were treated for PF. There response was they could not give out medical information.

Re: Any dancers?

bg cped on 5/12/01 at 18:38 (047613)

I believe that the NY Ballet has a specific guy that treats the dancers, not sure think his name is myerson?

Re: Any dancers?

Dr. Zuckerman on 5/13/01 at 03:41 (047626)

Taping and special ballet shoes with specific orthotic can do wonders. Resting is very important also. I use to treat ballet dancers and I understand the word rest isn't part of the picture. If you live in the New York area I can refer you to a specialist that treats alot of ballet dancers

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/13/01 at 09:24 (047634)

is it bess myerson?

Re: Any dancers?

bg cped on 5/13/01 at 09:38 (047635)

no it is mark, DR Z may know of him

Re: Any dancers?

john h on 5/13/01 at 13:04 (047644)

i bet dr z knows more about bess meyerson.

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/14/01 at hrmin (047720)

Hey sorry I haven't checked all weekend! I was doing exactly what you said to do, REST! Dr. Z is right even for a non-pro dancer, rest and quitting is unheard of. Right now is very very bad time to stop considering we have a performance and many extra hours of practice.I was thinking of quitting my part time job( 3 hours of work on my feet,for five days), but I need the money for my trip to Rome. I'm kicking myself now, I really can't wait to go to Rome but it hit me that we are going to be doing ALOT of walking. So I don't think there is much chance of getting the rest I really need, I am doing the best I can. I have been to a podiatrist, got some custom insoles five months ago.Last friday I went to another doctor because I was having a really bad week of pain, redness, ect. He gave me celebrex, which has really helped. So now all I need to do is get thoes ballet insoles and find a good pair of shoes to take for Rome. Heres my big question, what kind of shoe would everyone recommend for long traveling? I'm looking for something w/ankle support, but it has to breath because it will be summer, and should I still wear my insoles w/ these shoes?
thanks!
Caroline

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/14/01 at hrmin (047725)

Hey
I just wanted to say from a dancers point of view, that you learn to live with pain. There are alot of Drs out there that aren't very willing to help dancers, so pain becomes part of your life. Its always interesting to hear about medical solutions and advances for dancers but there is not much hope for most of us. The best thing is that the ballet industry is becoming more open minded to the health of dancers.I once read an artical on a russian company in the 50's that would prohibit dancers from bending their knees after performing leaps and jumps. That meant that all shock from landing would be absorbed in your knees. There was a quote from a former dancer of the company that said most of the performers were in wheelchairs and walkers by their 50s. Thank God things have changed! There are more products availble today than twenty years ago. I know that my teachers are learing as much info about the safest techniques for pointe.They are very knowledgeable on determining the correct toe shoes, to minimize damage to the feet. Toe shoes have also come along way! There are so many shapes and brands made for different feet. Still, it's a big fat fact of life that dancers are going to have foot problems.I really don't hear much about dancers w/ PF I think thats because its just part of pain. Dancers are not very trustworthy of doctors! Anyways thats why I came here, I would like to learn more about PF and how I could work with it in ballet. I would be willing to experiment if anyone has ideas!
Thanks!
Caroline

Re: Any dancers?

Julie on 5/15/01 at 02:45 (047762)

Hi Caroline

I don't have in my head all the posts on this thread, so I can't remember if you or anyone has said anything about taping.

Read the heel pain book, and in Part 2 you'll find instructions for several taping techniques. Try them. Taping supports the arch, replacing the support it has lost due to the injury to the fascia. It can relieve the pain, but more importantly it is a means of resting the fascia, which contributes to its healing. Whether it would work in this way in your case, I don't know, but it might help to relieve the pain, so it's worth a try. You may already be taping while dancing: I mean try taping all the time, for ordinary walking and activity.

Yes, dancers are going to have foot problems. And back problems. I know very little about dancing, but I am a yoga teacher and I have taught several erstwhile ballet dancers who have developed severe spinal problems. This is mainly owing to the pressure on the lumbar discs and nerves due to the insistence on that beautiful, graceful back arch. Please be careful: you have the whole of your life to live.

I think you might find it useful to start yoga. The yoga postures work holistically; they re-balance the body and can help to alleviate the destructive effects of ballet. However, you need a good, well-trained teacher who will be responsive to your particular needs and give you guidance on what to do and what not to do, and how to work: you're so used to pushing your body past its natural limits that you wouldn't know yourself, immediately, how far to go in the postures. So you need a teacher who can give individual attention: that means a small class (not more than 12-15).

When you're not dancing, rest as much as possible. Wear good, supportive shoes all the time. For Rome (lucky you!) I'd suggest a good pair of trainers (sneakers) with plenty of support and cushioning. And yes, of course wear your orthotics in them. Before you buy shoes, check them by holding the heel counter in one hand, the toe in the other, and bending the shoe to bring the heel and toe closer together. The shoe should bend only at the metatarsal, where your foot bends; if it bends in the middle, it's isn't a good shoe (with thanks to Richard CPed for his recent description of this!)

Re: Any dancers?

CarolineKi on 5/15/01 at hrmin (047805)

Thanks for the tips!
I have a great ballet instructor who uses many yoga stretches in our warm ups, before we got to barre work. I think I'm pretty lucky to have an intructor who takes a great amount of time todo that!
Thanks again!

Re: Any dancers?

Julie on 5/16/01 at 01:36 (047901)

Caroline, that's very good, but not quite what I meant. Doing yoga stretches as warm-ups for dance or sport isn't the same as practising yoga, which works, holistically, to balance and bring into harmony body, mind, and spirit. What I felt was that yoga practice might help you on all these levels.