From the French “en-pointe” which means that the ballet dancer has to gracefully support their whole body weight over the tips of their second or middle toes while their feet are fully extended.
This action requires a high level of strength and control in the feet, ankles, hips, and core. For young dancers, it can be fatal for their dance career if they are moved onto pointe too early, as they are at high risk of stress-reaction injuries such as tendinopathies, stress fractures, bursitis, strains, and sprains.
An individualised pre-pointe assessment is highly recommended in order to decrease the risk of injuries. Here at Wisdom Physiotherapy, we assess the following in order to identify any biomechanical restrictions:
- ballet technique
- body alignment throughout specific movements
- flexibility and strength of foot and ankle
- hip and core stability
By the end of the assessment, dancers will have a good understanding of what needs to be improved in order to progress onto pointe shoes. Depending on the findings, you might be guided to follow an individualised Clinical Movement Therapy program for dancers. In addition, a specific home-exercise program will help to build and maintain strength.
To make an appointment with Rebecca Deluca for a pre-pointe assessment, click here or call us on (08) 6389 2947.