Dance Physical Therapy

When you want to work at peak performance, or your pain overshadows your art, you need help from someone who speaks your language. Physical therapy for dancers, including dance-specific rehabilitation and conditioning, is an essential component of any dancer’s self-care and physical maintenance routine.

Get Stronger with a Dance PT Specialist

As a dancer, you ask a lot of your body on a daily basis. It’s crucial to give it the specific care it needs to continue to perform at a high level.

It’s not easy to find a qualified physical therapist with the proper experience and training to help you recover from an injury or take your performance capabilities to the next level. At Life’s Work Physical Therapy, you’ll work one-on-one with a physical therapist who has personal experience in dance and performing arts, and who is certified in orthopedic manual physical therapy.

When you work with a physical therapist who has a dance medicine background, you’ll be able to truly improve with someone who:

  • Understands your goals
  • Helps you set realistic, achievable expectations about healing with regards to performances
  • Uses dance-specific terminology
  • Tailors your rehab program to dance-specific movements
As a patient at Life’s Work, I feel heard and well taken care of. I definitely have more mobility and strength, and feel empowered to continue on my wellness journey.Sasha C.

Our Approach to Dance Physical Therapy

Personalized Treatment

At Life’s Work, our expert dance physical therapist will develop a personalized, dance-specific conditioning and rehabilitation program. Your treatment will be based on your individual needs and will focus on you, the performer, as a whole. Our physical therapist understands the unique challenges of performing artists. We love working with:

  • Dancers who specialize in ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip-hop, tap, and more
  • Aerial performers
  • Figure skaters
  • Musical theater and physical comedy performers
  • Artists in other disciplines

Specific Goals

If there is a part of your dancing that is difficult for you, participating in a dance conditioning program with a qualified physical therapist can help you improve in specific areas in a one-on-one environment.

Whether you’re getting ready to transition into pointe shoes, or pain has been inhibiting your performance, your dance therapy program will include conditioning that’s based on your goals. We can help you improve:

  • Balance
  • The height of your jumps
  • Flexibility
  • Strength for partnering
  • Cardiovascular endurance
  • Much more

Cross Training

Dance conditioning may also include some cross training. Cross training is when you do another activity, different from dance, which supports improvements in your dance technique through muscular strengthening, flexibility training, and cardiovascular exercise.

Many dancers find it intimidating to find a cross training activity that addresses an aspect of their dance that is lacking but that does not have the potential to negatively impact their performance. That’s where we can help. Together, we’ll identify the right cross training activities to reach your goals.

Dance Rehabilitation Options

Dance rehabilitation is physical therapy with a strong focus on recovering from dance injuries. The rehabilitation process can address both new and old dance injuries. Exercises and activities target dance-specific movements.

For instance, if a ballet dancer has sprained an ankle, rehab focuses on getting back en pointe. Exercises need to be done in a turned-out position, and the dancer needs coaching on how to safely return to full classes and rehearsals.

Without proper guidance, many dancers return too early and prolong the healing process or get injured again. But don’t worry. You may not need to refrain from all class work. Instead, we can help you modify classes and your dance schedule so you can heal while still enjoying the activity you love.

Get Back to Peak Performance

Real improvement takes work and perseverance—two things that dancers are very familiar with. The dancers who choose Life’s Work leave their treatment feeling stronger, healthier, and empowered with the tools they need to keep improving, reaching higher, and enjoying their art to the fullest.

“This is the single best healthcare experience I’ve had in Portland. My PT has a level of compassion I have honestly NEVER encountered with any healthcare professional.” Mikaela E.

Get Personalized Dance Physical Therapy

Get back to center stage with Life’s Work! Schedule an assessment with our dance medicine specialist.

Let's get better together.

Contact us today to get started on your individualized treatment plan.

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Three Convenient Locations

Phone: 503-295-2585
Fax: 503-295-2587

SW Portland

9450 SW Barnes Road
Suite 100
Portland, OR 97225

NE Portland

700 NE Multnomah Street
Suite 400
Portland, OR 97232

Tigard

9900 SW Greenburg Road
Suite 150
Portland, OR  97223