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The Injured Dancer: Introduction

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Injuries are a common occurrence in the dance world, but often something we don’t talk enough about.  As athletes dancer’s bodies take a constant beating as we require our bodies to take on unnatural tasks.  Welcome to DanceWear Corner’s newest series on prevention, treatment, and tips: “The Injured Dancer.”

I am Rebecca King Ferraro and am happy to have recently joined the DanceWear Corner marketing team.  I am a professional ballet dancer: a member of Miami City Ballet for over a decade.  I have been struggling with an injury for in an excess of two years, forcing me to take a year leave of absence to heal.  During this time, I will have the pleasure of working with DWC to create new content for all you dancers out there.

With “The Injured Dancer” series, I hope to chronicle my injury, my recent surgery, and my recovery.  Through my 10 years of dancing professionally, and 2 years of dealing with a severe injury, I have tried every possible healing technique, done every possible exercise, and eaten every possible food to promote healing.  So, over the next few months, I will be sharing everything I have learned and will be answering any questions you may have.

So stay tuned to DWC’s social media accounts for updates on new content!  In the meantime, feel free to leave any questions you may have below.


Get to know Rebecca a little better:

rebecca king ferraro, rebecca king, miami city ballet, rebecca king ballet, ballerina, ballet dancer, dancewear corner, DWC, dancewear corner blog, san francisco ballet school, the rock school, contra costa ballet centre, walnut creek ca,

Photo by Patricia Reagan

Rebecca King Ferraro was born and raised in Northern California. She received her ballet training at Contra Costa Ballet Centre in Walnut Creek, CA. King spent two summers studying at San Francisco Ballet School under the direction of Gloria Govrin. Her senior year in high school, she attended The Rock School in Philadelphia. After graduating in 2006, she moved to Miami to train at Miami City Ballet School.

King joined Miami City Ballet in 2007 as a company apprentice and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2008. Since then, she has worked with many of today’s most sought-after choreographers including Justin Peck, Alexei Ratmansky, Liam Scarlett, and Christopher Wheeldon. She has danced in the majority of MCB’s Balanchine repertoire, as well as classical full-length ballets and contemporary works. From 2010-2016, she served as a Company Representative on behalf of the dancers, a role similar to a union representative.

In 2010, she founded a dance blog, TendusUnderAPalmTree.com, which has enabled her to reach out to dancers and audience members from around the globe. In the summer of 2016, she launched a podcast, Conversations on Dance with fellow dancer Michael Sean Breeden.  In 2012, Ms. King started her own social media management company where she helps her clients reach their marketing potential through online platforms.  King is currently a member of the guest faculty of The Dance Academy of Stuart in Stuart, FL.  rebeccakingferraro.com

 

 

How to Stay “Dance Ready” over Summer

How to stay dance ready over summer break

If you’re like most dancers, summer doesn’t only means a break from school but a break from your regular dance schedule as well. While summer intensives help keep you in shape, they don’t last all summer. Go back to school this fall, fit and dance ready. Here’s how!

Summer Intensives

If you have the opportunity, take a summer dance intensive. Often these classes are hyper focused on technique and learning. While some intensives are an audition or invite only, many of your local studios offer summer classes or camps. Search for dance, ballet, or tap intensive in your area to discover various offerings around town.

Additionally, many studios offer all-day workshops or master classes. These workshops are a fantastic way to try out a new style of dance. In fact, DanceWear Corner will be hosting a Master Class in August. Click here to learn more and register.

College Classes

In addition to the summer intensives, high school aged dancers can stay dance ready by enrolling in a summer course at their local college. Many schools allow dual enrollment. With summer classes and time limitations, these are often more intense yet a rewarding way to learn from experienced dancers.

 

Daily Fitness

Even if you’re not in class, a daily fitness routine is a great way to cross train while giving your body a break from dance. Find a workout buddy and schedule time to challenge your muscles. Get a combination of cardio, strength, alignment, and stretching. If you prefer a gym, see if a local fitness center has summer rates or programs. If the gym isn’t the right place for you, check out some of the amazing streaming services the internet has to offer. Check out Daily Burn’s Barre Class, for something different but familiar.

 

Check out the I-Flex Stretch Unit for at home stretching and increasing flexibility.

I-Flex Dance Stretch Unit

 

Relax and Have Fun!

There’s a reason we have summer breaks, to relax and have fun. Make sure you give your mind a mental rest so you can return to class in the fall recharged and ready. And most importantly take time for your muscles to recover.  If you just finished your Spring performances, you were likely dancing a lot, and your body needs this time to recover.  And once your summer dance programs are done, put your feet up! You earned it.

And if you need a new extra dose of sunshine and palm trees, come on down to Orlando and visit us!

 

What are your favorite ways to stay “Dance Ready” over the summer? Share with us on social media!

Dance Tip Tuesday- Preventing Dance Injuries

Dance Tip Tuesday- Preventing Dance Injuries

Dancers are athletes and just like athletes, dancers are very likely to get injuries. Here are some tips and products that can help you avoid injuries.

Stretch!!

It is very important that before anytime you dance, you stretch. Wether you are going into a five hour rehearsal, hip-hop class or just marking through a dance. It is vital that you take the time to stretch, even if you are very flexible. You want to perform both static and dynamic stretches, along with light aerobic activity and core exercises. Below are links to previous blogs we have written on some of our favorite stretches.

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Strengthen Your Body

Yes dance is great exercise but if you want to become a better dancer, stay strong and healthy you will need to do some extra workouts. Lifting weights probably isn’t the best exercise for a dancer because that can make you stiff and cause more injuries. We suggest yoga and pilates. These exercises will make your stronger while keeping you lean and flexible.

Protect Yourself

If you are doing a lot of floor work or acrobatics make sure you use something to protect yourself. In acro class tape your wrists to get them extra support. On our website you can find these Bunhead knee pads to help protect your knees during floor work or knee drops.

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Epsom Salt

After a long day of dance or a hard workout, try taking an epsom salt bath. Soaking in a hot epsom salt bath with help sooth and relax your tense muscles.

Drink  A LOT of Water

During a long day of dance it is easy for dancers to get dehydrated, this is very dangerous. Dehydration puts you at a higher risk for injury and causes you to become tired faster.

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Check out these cute covet water bottles on our website!!

Rest

If you do get an injury make sure you give it time to properly heal. Most injuries dancers get are reoccurring because they don’t give them enough time to heal fully.

Dance Tip Tuesday- Dynamic Stretches

Dynamic Stretches

A dynamic stretch is a stretch that has motion to it, these stretches put your muscles into an extended range of motion. It is very important that we do dynamic stretches to warm up or body and not only static stretches, or stretches where we hold the same position for long periods of time. A Lot of dynamic stretches are built into ballet barre.

Dynamic stretches will engage muscles that we will use while we are dancing that regular static stretching won’t. Dynamic stretches will help will flexibility, agility and strength. Here are some of our favorite dynamic stretches

Front Pulse Kick

Start in a front tendu lift leg to 90 degrees and pulse up and down from 90 to over 90 then back to 90. Do that 10-20 times, the do 10-20 kicks. Make sure your hips stay square and you aren’t using your entire body to lift your leg. Also don’t forget about your bottom leg, keep it straight and lifted.

Passé Lift

Start in passé, then lift your knee to your armpit, and then bring it back to passé. Do this 15-25 times fast on both sides. Remember to keep your hip down and bottom engaged.

Downward Dog Kicks

You want to start in a downward dog position with your hands and feet hip and shoulder width apart. Lift one of your legs into a needle position and pulse. Do this 10-20 times and lower. Then you want to go all the way from the ground and kick your leg. Again do this 10-20 times then switch legs. You want to make sure you don’t wiggle your hips when you kick. Also make sure you don’t sit in your back and make it arch.

Dynamic stretching along with static stretching can really help to improve your flexibility.  

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