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Assessment of Compensated Turnout Characteristics and their Relationship to Injuries in University Level Modern Dancers

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Dancers may compensate alignment at the spine, hip, knees, ankles, and feet to achieve a greater turnout than is available at the hip alone. Such compensations are believed to lead to many of the musculoskeletal injuries experienced by dancers, especially overuse injuries. The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between compensated turnout and injury of the lower extremities and low back. Twenty-two university level modern dancers age 19 to 23 participated. Measurements were taken of active hip external rotation (AHER) prone and functional turnout (FTO) in first position. The difference between FTO and AHER was designated as compensated turnout (CTO). A questionnaire was conducted to gather information about dancers' injuries within the past 2 years. A total of 17 participants (77%) reported experiencing at least one injury in the 24 month period. All dancers compensated turnout. Results revealed a large variability in CTO among participants, ranging from 3° to 72°. Statistical analysis showed a significant relationship (r = 0.45, N = 22, p = 0.04) between CTO and the number of injuries experienced, especially as related to low back pain (r = 0.50, N = 22, p = 0.02). Students with no injury had a CTO mean of 26°, while those with two or more injuries had a CTO mean of 43°. Results contribute to previous studies that have examined the effects of CTO in ballet dancers and further indicate that compensatory patterns of turnout may increase the risk of experiencing more than one injury in university level modern dancers.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Dance Science, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London, UK; Frøyasgate 5, 4011 Stavanger, Norway. [email protected] 2: Department of Dance Science, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London, UK

Publication date: June 1, 2015

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