Recent studies by the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries compared jumping biomechanics between dancers and other athletes.
They looked at the effects of gender and fatigue on jumping technique and found that in the non-fatigued dancers, there were no significant differences between male and female dancers and male athletes, however female athletes had risk-associated landing techniques (for ACL/knee injuries). Fatigue was an issue for all participants. Male and female dancers and athletes all showed poor landing technique (consistent with an increased risk of ACL injury) after they were fatigued however, the dancers took longer to become fatigued than the athletes.
Harkness researchers propose several explanations for the differences in jumping mechanics between female dancers and athletes and the differences in endurance between dancers and athletes. These are:
While dancers tend to show better endurance than athletes in jumping, they did still show poor technique in jumping once they were tired.
Fatigue is important to pay attention to during this season of recitals, exams, and end of year performances.
After spending hours in a theatre rehearsing for a show, even dancers will fatigue.
In order to prevent injuries, it is important to get
adequate rest and recovery.
Most importantly: remember your training! Try to land softly in a toe-ball-heel order, with knees over 2-3rd toes and pelvis in neutral. If you are unable to control your landing towards the end of a long rehearsal, try marking the jumps and save your energy for the show.
For more information, please see the studies done by the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries:
Orishimo, KF ; Liederbach, M ; Kremenic, IJ ; Hagins, M ; Pappas, E
American Journal Of Sports Medicine, 2014, Vol.42(5), pp.1082-1088
Liederbach, M ; Kremenic, IJ ; Orishimo, KF ; Pappas, E ; Hagins, M
American Journal Of Sports Medicine, 2014, Vol.42(5), pp.1089-1095