Exercise for Dancers

If you have been dancing for more than two years and you sit during your day job, you need to do targeted exercises for your back and stomach otherwise you have a high chance of back problems.  At least that has been my experience when talking to people, like myself, who sit all day and dance all night.  About three years into my dance life, I started having back pains and at first, I figured it was mostly brought about by dipping my partners.  Dips are horrible on a body because they, at times, can put a lot of unexpected force on muscles rarely used.

I now do two things – I don’t dip as low and do a number of daily exercises that target my back for the times I unexpectantly hold all the weight of my follow.  The exercises work the core and include both stomach and back crunches.  Do any google search and find one that works for you.  My exercises consist of sixty sit-ups and a similar number of crunches laying on my front with first, swinging my legs up and then arching my back.  At first, I could only do about 5 or 10 reps, but have since worked it up to sixty.

I also work at a computer for most of the day (gads, here I sit writing this!) and my right shoulder is a problem.  Again, there are a near infinite number of shoulder exercises but the two that I do are as follows – first I stretch it by putting arms over my head while laying my back and holding them there in the “soft” spot where I can feel a bit of discomfort.  I know the stretch is working because after a few weeks, the “soft” spot slowly starts to go away.  The second exercise is to hold my elbows and fore arms together in front of my body and then rotate the arms at the shoulders until the arms are sticking out either side of my body.  I can really feel the shoulder open up and again, I started with low reps with no weights, and graduated to high reps with weights.

I can report that my back and shoulders are doing great!  I hope yours can too.

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