Foot And Ankle Injuries In Dance And Sport
Former English Institute of Sport & English National Ballet physiotherapist, Kasia Zielina, has recently joined Physiotherapy London’s team of specialist physiotherapists. With Kasia currently also in the process of organising a conference on 30th January 2014 in London, focusing on Managing Foot and Ankle Injuries in Dance and Sport, we took the opportunity to interview Kasia to find out a bit more about this unique conference.
What foot and ankle injuries do dancers and athletes have in common?
There are many, including: ankle sprains, stress fractures, repetitive tendon injuries, impingements of the ankle joint, plus arch issues related to biomechanical alterations in other parts of the body.
What are the long term impacts of these injuries?
Unfortunately, if misdiagnosed or improperly managed, these injuries can be career ending.
Why did you decide to put this conference together?
Having worked with the English National Ballet and the Central School of Ballet, as well as elite athletes at the national and professional level in GB Boxing, GB Athletics, and Tennis, I realized that the world of dance medicine is still very isolated from the world of sport medicine.
For example, at the English Institute of Sport athletes have full support from a multi-disciplinary team of physiotherapists, doctors, psychologists, nutritionists etc on a day-today basis. Many of the practitioners are from diverse backgrounds and not just from the individual sport in which they are working in. This helps to develop new initiatives in rehabilitation and training techniques, which could be beneficial for more complex physiotherapy patients where the traditional methods are not as successful.
In dance medicine, where funding is more limited, most practitioners don’t have the ability to work in a multi-disciplinary team. I thought it would therefore be a good idea to bring these two worlds of dance and sports medicine together, as both can benefit from the information exchange on injury prevention and specific rehab experiences. For example, a dancer who has overuse pain in the knee while jumping might benefit from the rehabilitation protocol of another jumping sport, such as volleyball. Sport can also gain from some of the longstanding traditions in dance such as flexibility or focused muscle work. Strength training in dance involves exercises that avoid excessive muscle bulk gain and sports such as boxing, for example, where weight gain could be detrimental to a fighter, could learn from these techniques.
You seem excited, what are you most proud of?
It has been wonderful to see this come together from an initial idea, and to get such a positive reaction. We have such an interesting mix of speakers, but it is so nice to see that the attendees are even more diverse, coming from private practices, national and international ballet companies, NHS, football clubs, hospitals and even circus arts.
I am proud of the diversity and strength of the speakers, which is now reflected in the registrants. I am excited about the event. I have worked with each of the twelve speakers along my career and they are all leaders in their field. For example, Professor Fares Haddad, a Consultant Orthopedic and Trauma surgeon, I worked with at University College London Hospitals’ clinic and he impressed me enormously with his knowledge, ability to teach and desire to share. In addition, Mr Lloyd Williams and Mr Rohit Madhav were both key surgeons while I was working with the ballet schools and they became the first port of call for advice for all ankle and foot injuries patients. Tony Kosoko, is now an owner of a Pilates studio, and was previously a professional dancer. He and I studied together on an advanced mobilization course for physiotherapists and we discussed numerous dancing cases together.
What is the main goal of the conference?
I think there are four main goals:
- To bring together leading experts from a wide range of medical and dance professions so they can share their unique insights into foot and ankle injuries.
- Have attendees walk away challenging their current assumptions and best practices on rehabilitation and injury prevention.
- To assist practitioners in maximising recovery and increasing performance potential in their patients.
- Provide a forum for networking between the worlds of sport and dance.
The conference will be covering many foot and ankle rehabilitation topics in great detail. Speakers will discuss both common and more unusual foot and ankle injuries, as well as extremely challenging cases. There is a particular focus on the bony and osteochondrial defects which are the most difficult areas to diagnose and rehabilitate. I also wanted to include a variety of perspectives on these topics, so we have speakers from diverse backgrounds including Surgeons, Pilates Instructors, Ballet Teachers, alongside specialized Physiotherapists. Each has a unique perspective and experience to offer.
Who Should Attend?
Anyone working with athletes or dancers or has an interest in rehabilitating foot or ankle injuries.
The Conference on Managing Foot and Ankle Injuries in Dance in Sport will be held on the 30th of January 2014 in London. For more information or to book online, please visit: www.vitalperformancemanagement.com