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Am J Sports Med. 1992 May-Jun;20(3):267-73.

A profile of the musculoskeletal characteristics of elite professional ballet dancers.

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Miller Health Care Institute for Performing Artists, St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York, New York.


Twenty-eight principal dancers and soloists from America's two most famous ballet companies were examined for anthropometric measurements, including flexibility, muscle strength, and joint range of motion. Both male and female dancers were flexible, but not hypermobile, and did not differ significantly from each other. Marked differences were found between the range of motion of the hip and ankle in the dancers and the norms for the general population. The increased external rotation of the hip in women was accompanied by a loss in internal rotation, resulting in an increased range of motion with an externally rotated orientation. The men, however, lost more internal rotation than they gained in external rotation. These data raise the possibility of a torsional component to the turned-out hip position in elite female professional ballet dancers. In addition, significant anatomic differences separate elite dancers of both sexes from the normal population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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