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6 Common Dance-Related Injuries

6 Common Dance-Related Injuries

Dancers are no stranger to injuries. Due to the remarkable strength and flexibility they must possess for the extensive hours they put into their craft, dancers are often subjected to most of the typical injuries that athletes face, with a particular focus on the hips, knees, and feet. Here are six of the most common dance injuries and how you can prevent them.

Common Dance-Related Injuries

Some of the following injuries are common for most athletes, while some almost exclusively affect dancers. Regardless of the scope of their effect, each of these injuries are common in the dance world.

  1. Snapping hip: Snapping hip syndrome is an injury where a person may hear a clicking sound accompanied by a snapping sensation when they move their hip. This is often caused by muscle tendons getting inflamed from overuse leading them to click as they rub over the hip socket. 
  2. Hip impingement: Hip impingement happens when the ball of the hip pinches up against the cup of the hip, damaging the cartilage in that area, which leads to hip stiffness and pain. In severe cases, this may lead to arthritis. 
  3. Jumper’s knee: Jumper’s knee, also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome, results from the cartilage under the kneecap being damaged, often from overuse. This is the most common cause of knee pain and particularly affects dancers. 
  4. Ankle sprains: Ankle sprains are the most common acute injury to affect dancers. Sprains are caused by a movement that forces the ankle outside its normal range of motion, leading to tears in the ankle ligaments or overstretching. 
  5. Achilles tendonitis: Achilles tendonitis is also a common overuse injury for dancers. It happens when the Achilles tendon gets inflamed, leading to pain and tenderness in the area. 
  6. Trigger toe: Clinically known as flexor hallucis longus tenosynovitis, “trigger toe” is another overuse injury that affects the big toe, making it permanently flexed due to an injury in the toe’s muscle. This injury almost exclusively affects dancers, particularly ballerinas, since there is such a large focus on putting pressure on the big toe.

How to Prevent Dance Injuries

While injuries can happen at any time and often unexpectedly, there are several things dancers can do to prevent getting injured. Consider the following recommendations:

  • Get the proper amount of sleep every night
  • Stay hydrated
  • Always warm-up before training or performing
  • Exercise to build your strength and endurance
  • Wear proper shoes and attire during class

Do You Have a Dance-Related Injury?

If you are dealing with an injury due to dancing, don’t worry. At Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine, our expert sports medicine team is fully equipped to treat your condition and help get you back to jumping and turning in no time. To find out more about our services or to make an appointment, call us today at 904-825-0540 or visit our website.

Paul Roettges, MDPaul Roettges, MD
A member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Association of Knee and Hip Surgeries, Dr. Roettges performs hip and knee replacements as well as complex unresolved hip and knee pain.


Sina Kasraeian, MD 
Board Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and has extensive training in arthroscopy and sports medicine reconstructive procedures.


Dr Hort - Foot surgeon St Augustine

Kurtis Hort, MD 
Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and a member of the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. Dr. Hort specializes in reconstructive procedures of the foot and ankle.