Assistant Professor University of California at Irvine Irvine, California, United States
Objectives: The characteristic postures in Indian classical dance predisposes dancers to injury. There is a dearth of research on injuries and injury prevention in Indian classical dancers.This study serves to (1) understand the incidence, nature of, location and distribution of musculoskeletal injuries in Indian dancers, (2) investigate the possibility of association between pain and type of flooring.
Design: A survey was generated using the REDCap software. Indian classical were requested to anonymously fill out demographic information, dance history, injury history and prevention mechanisms, electronically. Participants were also asked to note the type of flooring practiced on, location of pain using VAS pain scale, and any supplemental training. Descriptive statistical analysis was performed to evaluate results of the demographics, location of pain, perceived causes of injury, and association between type of flooring and prevalence of pain.
Results: We received a total of 152 responses from all 8 Indian classical dance forms, The majority (78%) of the participants reported a dance related injury, which were attributable to knee or back injuries. Preponderance of the injuries were sustained during rehearsal/practice for an upcoming performance, and 43% did not seek any medical care, despite an injury and presence of residual pain. Dancers mostly practiced on wooden flooring or cement flooring. The prevalence of lower extremity pain in dancers who practiced on cement flooring was higher than those that practiced on wooden flooring.
Conclusions: This survey serves as a pilot study to investigate injury patterns in the underserved Indian classical dance forms. Increased ground reaction force, flooring used for practice and biomechanical demands placed on these dancers make them even highly susceptible to musculoskeletal injuries. With the gathered information, hope to provide a platform for the development of a rehabilitative program for injury prevention, education, and awareness.