Core stability for Dancers – try our Dance Pilates

Are you a dancer who wants to improve your technique, flexibility or just prevent those niggly injuries that can keep you from training?

Here at Bureta physio we have a dedicated physiotherapist who can help you with this.

As a dancer you will be aware of the importance of core stability to improve turns, control arabesque and prevent many back issues.  You may already being lots of training for it but are you really doing what you need to do to get the most out of it.

Core stability is not about doing hundreds of sit ups, getting a ‘six-pack’ or being able to hold a plank position for 3 minutes (although these do still have their purposes!)

True Core Stability IS…

  • The ability to control the spine dynamically, that is, with movement.
  • Fine co-ordination of all of the muscles that control your trunk, not just the abdominals.
  • The ability to adjust the level of control needed, depending on the situation.
  • Creating a stable base off which to work the limbs.
  • Stabilizing the mid-section to allow smooth and effective transfer of force through the body.

While everyone needs some level of core stability, some people need more than others. For a dancer, core stability needs to be fantastic fine coordination of all of the muscles to allow controlled mobility of the pelvis and spine with movement, rather than bracing in one spot.

So How Do We Do That?
True core stability exercises are extremely hard to do properly and very easy to do wrong. The purpose of our specific dance pilates courses are to ensure you understand the finer details required to gain true core stability and a progressive system of exercises the train your muscles in the best possible way.

Flexibility
Our dance pilates classes also provide ways to improve your flexibility in a safe but effective manner.  Unfortunately we often see injuries that are caused by over-stretching, especially on young bodies that are still developing.  Its not that as a physiotherapists we are against improving flexibility but this can be achieved through controlled and safe methods not putting joints or muscles through undue stress.

Lucy Poole, one of our physiotherapists here at Bureta is experienced with working with dancers both from a amateur level through to professional so you can get the most from your dancing.  This can be through a one to one physiotherapy session, one to one pilates classes or in our group dance pilates classes.

The goal of the classes is to improve dance technique and reduce dance related injuries that we see a lot in the clinic.  Simple postural and muscle balance adjustments can make a huge difference to current performance and prevent time off due to injury.

They will run for 6 consecutive weeks at a cost of $80 for 6 consecutive sessions.

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Heading to the slopes to ski or snowboard? – you have got to read this first!

Ok so the last couple of days in the bay have been super cold for our standards

Winter is here and many people will head to the snow for a well earned break. While skiing/boarding comes naturally to some, others spend most of their time unsuccessfully negotiating the equipment and terrain. Whatever your level of experience, skiing/ boarding can be hazardous and contribute to injury. The physiotherapists in our practice can help. We can ensure that you are prepared for the slopes by minimising your injury risk through specific exercise programmes, fitness regimes, strengthening and warm up, stretching and cool down techniques.

To avoid injury this snow season, the physiotherapists in our practice recommend you:

Be fit to ski/snowboard

Begin to incorporate ski-specific exercises into your regular exercise routine at least eight weeks prior to your holiday. This will promote use of the muscles and joints required for skiing. Strengthen the muscles specific to snow sports (thighs, butts, core stabilisers and triceps) to reduce the risk of injury and increase your enjoyment and endurance on the slopes. We can outline ski-specific or board-specific exercises whilst prescribing a conditioning programme to improve your core stability and muscle strength. Ultimately, your performance on the slopes relies on your fitness, so talk to us about how to achieve an optimal fitness level. We have access to a number of gyms around Tauranga and can write you a ski or board specific program and you won’t be tied into a long term membership!! Talk to us about Bureta Physio’s corporate gym rates 

Look after your back

When travelling distances to reach the mountain, rest every two hours and stretch. See one of our physiotherapists for effective stretching advice, and if you have had problems with your back come into the clinic and pick up a Lumbar roll for the trip which means when you unfold yourself after the trip you are ready to go

Warm up, stretch and cool down

Before hitting the slopes, warm up like you would with any other sporting activity. Stretch your thigh, calf and arm muscles check out or blog on dynamic stretches. Start your day with easy runs to loosen up (make sure you also do this after each rest break.) Once you have finished skiing for the day, remembers to cool down. These activities will better prepare your body to avoid injury. We can show you warm up, stretching and cool down techniques.

Ski within your capabilities

Beginners should take advantage of a ski lesson and not succumb to the pressure of keeping up with experienced skiers. Don’t be afraid to rest when you find yourself getting tired. Fatigue can increase your injury risk. And remember, the more unfit you are, the more tired you will become. Injuries often happen on that last run of the day!

To avoid injury on the snowfields this winter, consult one of our physiotherapists on how to best prepare your body.

Running Injuries: Can I train through?

Authored by Donna Withers – Physiotherapist @ Bureta

This is a common question we get asked. As a runner it is always our goal to be running one hundred percent pain free. Unfortunately in reality this is often not the case as many runners are constantly dealing with a niggle whether it be a slight pain in the knee to a tight calf or a niggling hamstring. These small niggles and aches often don’t bother us enough to need to take time out from running but do stop training from being enjoyable.

There are a wide range of running injuries that are common complaints amongst the running population. These range from severe injuries which require a lot of time off to mild aches that can come and go. You can reduce the risk of needing to take too much time off with how you go about managing your injury. Taking the time to seek treatment and getting a treatment plan that focuses on the causative and underlying factors and developing a long term management plan for prevention which often includes strengthening, stretching and regular maintenance through the use of a roller and massage can significantly reduce time off.

An example of a very common running injury is Patellofemoral Syndrome also known as “runners knee” this is the irritation of the cartilage on the underside of your knee cap. This is commonly seen in runners who don’t have good biomechanics with loading/running. This can be caused by a number of factors i.e. weakness of the quads, gluts, hips or poor foot control/overpronation (rolling in). By focusing on the correct strength exercises which improve biomechanics and therefore reduce the loading of your knee training can be continued by reducing intensity and cross training.

Prevention is always the key whether you have an injury or you are just looking to avoid one your physiotherapist at Bureta can assess your biomechanics and work with you to develop a management plan to keep you out on the track. See our previous blog on some tips for running injury prevention. Remember the best injury cure is injury prevention – happy running!!

How To Recover From Injury Faster

In order to achieve wellness, optimal performance and/or full recovery from injury or illness a combination of movement and exercise, nutrition and hydration, rest and recovery, and thought and stress control are necessary.

Movement and Exercise:

The right type and amount of exercise stimulates the growth and strengthening of injured tissues and is vital to the healing process following an injury.

Nutrition and Hydration:

It is important to eat the right amount and right type of food to ensure that specific nutrients are available for tissue repair. Drinking an adequate amount of water is essential to allow hydration of your joints, allowing your cartilage, discs and nerves to function normally.

Rest and Recovery:

Your body heals when you rest. It is important to get a balance with the right amount of exercise versus the right amount of rest. At nighttime your body undergoes its physical repair between the hours of 11pm and 1am.

Thought and Stress Control:

Excessive stress, extreme emotional responses and negative thought patterns may all interfere with the healing process.

Your physiotherapist is able to discuss all of these components with you giving you advice and information on how you can manage these factors to achieve the best results for your injury.

Knock knees, flat feet, fallen arches – Should I be concerned about these with my child?

As children grow from babies through toddlers, young children, the dreaded teens and finally to adults they go through many growth stages. During different stages of growth their body is placed under varying stresses. There are a number of factors or biomechanical issues that are good to have checked out by a physio to help ensure your children stay pain and injury free.

Babies-toddlers: during this stage there are a number of milestones which are most often the largest concern. These include the recommended time to sit, crawl, walk and develop higher functions likes socialising and language. It is important to realise that all children develop at differing rates, and some may bottom shuffle instead of crawling or skip it altogether and go straight to walking. If you have concerns at this stage speak with your GP/paediatric nurse or physio. Odds are your child just has quite reached that stage yet.

Toddler-young children: during this stage changes in the alignment of the lower limb and growth spurts can result in a variety of problems. Many children will often suffer ‘growing pains’, flat feet, knock or bowed knees and clumsiness with sport and running. If you notice any of these it is important to have them checked to ensure that growing pains are not muscle/tendon injuries and that foot issues are within normal limits. Unchecked these can go on to generate further problems.

Teens: Once again an important area due to massive growth spurts and changes to the general structure of their body as puberty takes hold. It is also at this stage that we often see dramatic increases in the duration and intensity of activity.

Common problems during this stage for girls include frontal knee pain, ankle sprains, calf tears and shin splints.

For boys common issues include shoulder instabilities, sprained ankles and knees, tendon attachment inflammation (Osgood-schlatters etc) and shin splints.

During the school term between work, sports and after school events it can be hard to find time to get these niggling injuries or pains checked but it is important that these issues are sorted out SOONER rather than later and that the appropriate treatment and rehab programmes can be started.

For a Free assessment voucher or quick chat to see if your child is appropriate for a full assessment give us a call on 5761860 or email buretaphysio@xtra.co.nz for more information.

Think Optimistically About Injury

We regularly get clients in the clinic frustrated or disappointed with injury, which is an entirely natural and understandable response. However if we think of it optimistically then the majority of the time the injury has come about from being active. In a population that is constantly being told that obesity, heart disease, diabetes etc is rising – then being active is a great thing. I always tell clients that if we were never meant to get injured, then we wouldn’t be good at healing. Our bodies are dynamic and will adapt to stimulus under the right load – Physiotherapist are excellent at telling you when to load and what to do to give you the optimal environment to get better.

(recent news article from New Zealand Society of Physiotherapists President in response to ACC article discussing the increase in costs of injuries from dancing and skateboarding in the Sunday Star Times)

Focus on the fun of physical activity and the positive effects to your health, not the risks say physiotherapists. “Let’s celebrate our active population,” suggests Jonathan Warren, President of the New Zealand Society of Physiotherapists. “Isn’t it wonderful that so many more New Zealanders are getting into dancing, skateboarding, jogging, fitness training, weightlifting and tennis? We’re missing the point altogether if we highlight only the risks and costs of injuries and not the importance of fitness and the potential health dollar savings related to this.

“The truly unsustainable costs – to individual health and to the health system – arise from inactivity,” Mr Warren commented in response to reported increases in injury claims resulting from these activities. “I can’t emphasise enough how important it is for all New Zealanders to be active. We should all take sensible precautions to reduce injuries, but we should not let the fear or cost of injuries put us off being active. In New Zealand we have a highly competent physiotherapy workforce to promote and support active lifestyles.

“I agree with the Dancing With The Stars contestant who said it’s awesome so many people are giving it a go instead of just watching.”

Physiotherapists advise people to take some basic precautions when starting a new activity:

Go to a teacher or trainer qualified in your activity. Ask about experience and credentials.
Start slowly and learn the basics. Extend the scope of your activity gradually.
Warm up first – cold muscles, tendons and ligaments are more vulnerable to injury.
Avoid putting pressure on areas of your body you know cause you problems. If you’re unsure, ask a health professional such as a physiotherapist.
If you have a serious medical condition, consult an appropriate health professional about how best to start your chosen activity.
“It’s ironic that in the same month that stomach stapling is promoted as a saving to the health dollar, an increase in participation in dancing is viewed negatively. Keep active and have fun, for your health’s sake,” Mr Warren says.Heath