20:04 PM

Get Hip to Hip Health

Dance Magazine discusses strategies to protect hip health in dancers and features guidance from Stephanie Swensen Buza, MD, sports medicine surgeon at HSS and a former ballet dancer.

According to Dr. Buza, the technical demands of dance require “extreme range of motion” in the hips.

She continued that the excessive movement and stress on the joint puts dancers at risk of developing hip issues that range from muscle strain and inflammation to serious injuries that require treatment, like hip impingement, snapping hip syndrome, labral tears and tendinitis.

Dr. Buza underscored that working from proper technique is the best way to safeguard against injury.

Dr. Buza explained, “When you’re stretching, it’s all about moderation. It’s not supposed to hurt.” Avoid overstretching your hips in splits or foot-in-hand extensions, because that motion will only exacerbate underlying inflammation.

“When you are stretching those hip flexors, make sure you’re focusing on the correct muscle group, doing it with the proper technique,” she added.

Finding other ways to strengthen your body outside of the studio is key to preventing injuries. Dr. Buza recommended focusing on supplemental activities, like Pilates and yoga, that target the core, back and the muscles surrounding the hips. Additionally, low-impact cardio exercise, like swimming or biking, is also an excellent choice because it builds stamina and endurance in the muscles surrounding the hips.

She advised to be mindful of posture and alignment throughout the day. “If you’re doing anything sustained for a long period of time in malalignment, then it’s going to place stress across the joint and increase pain and pressure,” she noted.

Read the full article at Dancemagazine.com. This article also appeared in print in the March issue.