Sports Physiotherapy in Dance Medicine



Musculoskeletal injury is just as prevalent in Dance performance as any other elite sports or activity. Dance Medicine is the study of these injuries specific to the demands of these types of human movements. It involves the assessment and diagnosis of biomechanical function and dysfunction, and the affect of dysfunction on the artistic performance.

Our role as Sports Physiotherapists is to maximise performance via injury prevention, and the restoration altered movement patterns. The key to injury prevention is an in depth understanding of the techniques involved in dance and how this affects the biomechanical loading of the neuro-musculoskeletal system.

While strength, flexibility and coordination are the basics to a Sports Physiotherapists role, Dance Medicine aims to enhance individual functional capacity, taking the dancer one step closer to perfection. Pre-pointe and turnout assessment with dance specific screening are essential to the dancer preventing injury and achieving these goals. With an individualised assessment and injury prevention program, Dance Medicine is a necessary adjunct to the dancer’s education to body awareness, gold medal nutrition, appropriate warm and cool down, dynamic muscle activation and stretching.

Dances’ repetitive nature to achieve perfection, often leads to subtle but chronic overuse syndromes. Research in Dance Medicine continues to highlight the importance in early intervention of musculoskeletal complaints, of even the mildest of ‘niggles’.

The Sports Physiotherapist in Dance Medicine is part of your team, keeping in close consultation with dance teachers, parents, and the dance environment. We are proactively involved in the health and well-being of a dancer’s career, essential to the preparation of perfection.

Sports Physiotherapist Brad Fernihough brings a wealth of experience and expertise in Performance Physiotherapy and Dance Physiotherapy to Physioworks Camberwell.

For over 10 years Brad Fernihough has been at the forefront of Performance Physiotherapy and Dance Physiotherapy with elite classical ballet and contemporary dancers, gymnasts, acrobats, musicians, cheerleaders and even clowns, including working with the Birmingham Royal Ballet (UK) and as Head Physiotherapist for Cirque Du Soleil.