Anatomy and Physiology of a Dancer

Positives and Negatives

Positives

There are many positives to be found in dancing. Dancing provides many different types of exercise, which can have clear health benefits if a dancer works hard and diligently. One type of exercise is anaerobic training, which is defined as "maximum, all out effort for a short period of time." A dancer could experience this during a performance, when they are performing jumps, quick steps, and fast skipping. The benefits of anaerobic exercise include building overall strength and muscle mass. Body composition is another benefit to be found in dance. The makeup of the human body should be 17-25% fat for females and under 15% for males. The intense training and physical activity in dance helps create healthy bodies and longer life expectancy. The third reward that can come from dance is power training. A major part of power training is jumping, which dancers do frequently in training and performance. Power training improves muscular strength and elasticity. Flexibility training is yet another positive aspect to come from dance. Dancers must stretch everyday in order to avoid injury, and in doing so they become more flexible and improve coordination. The final advantage gained from dancing is neuromuscular coordination. Dancing requires one to use visualization and imagery in order to foresee the end results. This results in better balance, agility, and coordination.
What is Body Composition

Negatives

Being a dancer is not all that it is cracked up to be. Long hours of practice may result in injuries that end your career. Here are some examples....
Achilles Tendonitis / Tendinopathy - Explained in 90 Seconds

Rachel Whiting

Rachel Whiting was an amazing dancer who went to Juilliard and got her own studio to teach class. She got to travel around the world teaching kids dance and observing different cultures' dance. She had the dancer's dream life. In 2006 all that came to a halt at the age of 38 when she found out she had "FAI" which is a disorder when your hip bones rub together when you walk, run or dance. It is similar to osteoarthritis, when cartilage slowly disappears and soon it is just bone on bone. All her life went down the drain from this; she couldn't even walk anymore. After some research and looking at her situation, Rachel decided to get a hip replacement. Even though doctors said she wouldn't be able to dance anymore, she didn't let that stop her. She slowly eased her way back into dancing to do what she loved. She made a comeback by slowly returning to teach dance class, being in competitions, and eventually winning them.