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anondancer_15

Shin splints / compartment syndrome

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Hiya 

 

just wondering if anyone has any experience of severe shin splints (Ive had it for about 6 months now) or compartment syndrome? I’m seeing a vascular surgeon on Monday which I think is for compartment syndrome investigation. 

 

Also if anyone has any tips for coping with injury because I literally can’t cope with sitting out of dance for more than one day at a time it drives me mad! I’ve been injured pretty much since the start of my college course which is super frustrating obviously and I’m soooo fed up but also concerned that the course is slipping away from me and I’m running out of time, especially if I need surgery. I’m 20 so I feel like I should be nearing the end of my training and starting my career but couldn’t be further from it. 

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Have you seen a specialist dance physio? If not, then that would be a very good idea as not only will they check you over physically, they will try and identify the cause. They look at the way you use yourself as there might be an underlying technique issue which is causing the problem. They can check that you are using the correct muscle groups and so on, and give you specialist advice about specific exercises to help. As far as I remember, shin splints can be caused by the way you are landing in jumps and grand allegro (having listened to what a dance teacher was saying when I was watching at dd's associate class once). 

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27 minutes ago, taxi4ballet said:

Have you seen a specialist dance physio? If not, then that would be a very good idea as not only will they check you over physically, they will try and identify the cause. They look at the way you use yourself as there might be an underlying technique issue which is causing the problem. They can check that you are using the correct muscle groups and so on, and give you specialist advice about specific exercises to help. As far as I remember, shin splints can be caused by the way you are landing in jumps and grand allegro (having listened to what a dance teacher was saying when I was watching at dd's associate class once). 

Thanks, but I don’t think it’s from jumping technique as I’ve been dancing for 15 years and never had an injury like this before. Last summer I started teaching aqua aerobics (basically jumping around  on concrete poolside) and I think that’s the underlying cause and then going straight into full time training hasn’t allowed for recovery. We also don’t have sprung floors at college as it’s just converted office space. I haven’t seen a dance specialist but have paid out for sports massage, physio (private and nhs), osteopath and chiropractor 

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1 hour ago, anondancer_15 said:

We also don’t have sprung floors at college

Well that's probably it then. If you were trained on a sprung floor and are now dancing on one that isn't, then that really isn't going to help at all.

 

What I meant about the dance physio and technique, was that if you already have shin splints, they can make sure that any exercises you are doing (and the technique used) won't be exacerbating the problem. They would also be able to show you how to strengthen other muscles which could help to alleviate the issue.

Edited by taxi4ballet
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Agree with Taxi on this.  Technique is a big thing with shin splints and going from part time to full time training is a big jump and any imbalances in your technique are going to show up now.  Jumping on concrete may very well have set it off and dancing on solid floors is also a massive problem - vitally important your technique is spot on. Seem to remember it has a lot to do with getting your heels down on landing. 

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In this day and age how can a college offering full time training not have sprung floors? I fear it will be very hard to recover if you are dancing on an unsuitable floor.

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Have you tried KT tape? 

 

I must admit I was quite surprised to read that you are dancing on unsprung floors, the owners of your college certainly know better, although after a bit of digging I’ve been led to believe the whole building is a bit of a building site 😕 

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It’s not the only unsprung floor in a full time school. How about the wooden floor inside the main building of Tring? Beautiful building but practical? I wonder if it causes any problems? 

 

Clearly floors are another thing to consider in a school... 

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An old fashioned wooden floor is not necessarily bad.  If planks are laid across joists there is a natural sprung effect.  These are the sorts of floor that make the base of the stage in old theatres and in many old buildings where classical ballet technique developped.  The floors to watch out for are concrete or anything laid on a solid base such as tile or parquet. 

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Hi. We’re about 15 months down the line with my dd who has had ‘shin splints’ almost since she started at full time upper school. 

My dd has seen various dance physios, tried sports massage, taping her shins, acupuncture, corrected her landing technique, but still has pain in her lower shins. 

I asked her physio to refer her for an x-ray to rule out any hair- line fractures as it has been going on for so long. She had this at Easter and her doctor suspected that a  hair- line fracture was starting on one shin. She was then referred to see a specialist Musculoskeletal doctor on the NHS. We are now waiting for an MRI so he can confirm exactly what is going on with her shins but thankfully he is very positive that he can help with more appropriate physio exercises for her, better taping technique and most importantly a proper period of rest over the summer. 

I would definitely ask for an X-ray and MRI if physio hasn’t helped you to see exactly what is happening with your shins. I know dancers hate to stop training but I’m afraid resting for only a day is definitely not going to be of any help whatsoever !! Good luck with your appointment. 

 

Edited by Yorkshire Pud
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Something to remember regarding floors and injury - lots of research has been done in this area and the general concensus is that it is not the type of the floor that causes injury, nor is it necessarily technique (heels on/off) although knee alignment on landing is something to consider. It is the change of floor that is the most frequent cause of injury. Consider Indian dancers who repeatedly do flat footed steps/stamps, in bare feet, on very solid floors but suffer fewer injuries. Also a floor that is too sprung can be challenging in terms of energy recoil (or lack of it).

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9 minutes ago, Yorkshire Pud said:

Hi. We’re about 15 months down the line with my dd who has had ‘shin splints’ almost since she started at full time upper school. 

My dd has seen various dance physios, tried sports massage, taping her shins, acupuncture, corrected her landing technique, but still has pain in her lower shins. 

I asked her physio to refer her for an x-ray to rule out any hair- line fractures as it has been going on for so long. She had this at Easter and her doctor suspected that a  hair- line fracture was starting on one shin. She was then referred to see a specialist Musculoskeletal doctor on the NHS. We are now waiting for an MRI so he can confirm exactly what is going on with her shins but thankfully he is very positive that he can help with more appropriate physio exercises for her, better taping technique and most importantly a proper period of rest over the summer. 

I would definitely ask for an X-ray and MRI if physio hasn’t helped you to see exactly what is happening with your shins. I know dancers hate to stop training but I’m afraid resting for only a day is definitely not going to be of any help whatsoever !! Good luck with your appointment. 

 

Hi, hope your dd gets better soon! I had an MRI in January and it came back clear so luckily there’s no stress fracture. However doesn’t help me figuring out what is wrong. I also use rock tape but have to keep taking breaks from it because I’ve been using it so long I keep getting a rash/spots from it 😕

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10 hours ago, Bluebird22 said:

Have you tried KT tape? 

 

I must admit I was quite surprised to read that you are dancing on unsprung floors, the owners of your college certainly know better, although after a bit of digging I’ve been led to believe the whole building is a bit of a building site 😕 

The building was a bit of a building site for the first term as we moved buildings but it’s all finished now and it looks fantastic 👍🏼

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I suffer a lot with my shins and have found that not stretching out my calves has really really helped. I roll out my calves in the nights but the last couple of weeks have stopped stretching them out and touch wood the pain is more manageable. Also icing my shins just before bed rather than throughout the day is better. 

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I danced pain free for years but then got shin splints in my 2nd month of full time training. It took 7 years to get to the bottom of the issue and it turns out I had a very weak ankle on that side so my foot rolled in every time I landed from, or took off for, a jump. This caused tendonitis and shin splints. I had no idea my ankle was weak as I hadn't had a problem with pointework, my teacher nearly had a heart attack when I said I'd been doing hops en pointe with the ankle strength of an average 7 year old! 

Basically I'd always had the weakness but it didn't cause a problem until my training hours increased. It's worth trying to see a GOOD dance physio. Unfortunately there are some rubbish ones out there. Which part of the country are you in?

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On 13/05/2018 at 13:07, RachelC said:

I danced pain free for years but then got shin splints in my 2nd month of full time training. It took 7 years to get to the bottom of the issue and it turns out I had a very weak ankle on that side so my foot rolled in every time I landed from, or took off for, a jump. This caused tendonitis and shin splints. I had no idea my ankle was weak as I hadn't had a problem with pointework, my teacher nearly had a heart attack when I said I'd been doing hops en pointe with the ankle strength of an average 7 year old! 

Basically I'd always had the weakness but it didn't cause a problem until my training hours increased. It's worth trying to see a GOOD dance physio. Unfortunately there are some rubbish ones out there. Which part of the country are you in?

Gosh I hope it doesn't take me 7 years i definitely would have given up by then! my teacher asked me if there's going to be a point where i'd have to leave the course because obviously i'm not getting a lot out of it right now and am falling behind rapidly, doesn't help that my peers are all 16/17 and i'm 20. 

i'm in bedfordshire, not too far from london so i've just tried to get referred to the NHS dance injury clinic in stanmore, which i'm hoping won't take too long and might actually be beneficial. 

i had my appointment with the vascular surgeon on monday and he had no idea why i was there as he's used to dealing with older patients with varicose veins, so i've now been referred for a vein scan but i'm almost certain it's a muscular problem but we'll see. 

thanks for all your thoughts! 

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Kate Barnard (katebarnard.com) is a Physio in Bedford who specialises in sports injuries. She is lovely and I am sure she could help you, if not she will certainly know who you should be seeing. 

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On 17/05/2018 at 06:49, Pointetoes said:

Kate Barnard (katebarnard.com) is a Physio in Bedford who specialises in sports injuries. She is lovely and I am sure she could help you, if not she will certainly know who you should be seeing. 

Thank you I will look into that! 

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On 12/05/2018 at 08:11, Bluebird22 said:

Have you tried KT tape? 

 

I must admit I was quite surprised to read that you are dancing on unsprung floors, the owners of your college certainly know better, although after a bit of digging I’ve been led to believe the whole building is a bit of a building site 😕 

 

I too am very surprised.  i know of a girl there (and one who came home and decided to train locally instead).  I really think that if they are offering full time vocation training they sho0uld at least offer the basic, safe facilities.

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