Ballroom Dance > Foot Pain

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by Dancebug, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. Dancebug

    Dancebug Well-Known Member

    My dance partner says QS hurts his feet most, especially steps like pendulum. I have no idea why such is the case, and I don’t understand what kind of foot pain he has, even though he tried to describe to me. Does anybody else have a similar problem? Is there anything my partner can do to ease the pain? We need to do something about this because QS has become the most avoided dance for us. (When we used to do Latin, he said Samba was the hardest on his feet.)
  2. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    his arches? am no QS expert, but i know from what i'm working on that sets QS apart from the other dances that it requires a kind of tighter spring in the foot, as in jive. if he practices developing that hopping control, maybe his feet will strengthen & adjust?

    dunno... just putting an idea out there...
  3. Egoist

    Egoist Member

    "most"? Does that mean that all dances hurt his feet?

    Does walking hurt his feet?
  4. Dancebug

    Dancebug Well-Known Member

    I meant toward the end of long practice. Even my feet start to hurt after two to three hours of practice.
  5. WorksForShoes

    WorksForShoes Member

    Standard disclaimers about my not being a physician, and how your partner should see a real one if pain persists....

    However, I have had some luck warding off foot pain by wearing those Food Undeez (sp?) -- little slip ons that leave your toes free and come up just over the ball of the foot. They give a little extra padding to the ball of the foot, and a little support on the sides where my feet seem to hurt after a lot of dancing.

    DH has also had success taping his feet in a similar place with athletic tape, as have I. But if you do this every day, it can get expensive. So my rec would be to try taping the painful spot, and if that helps and the spot coincides with where a Foot Undee or Dance Paw would cover, then try a pair of those.
  6. Ithink

    Ithink Active Member

    Well, first of all, I think if you practice for 2-3 hours, foot pain is pretty normal. I would be shocked if your feet didn't hurt after 2-3 hours of dancing!

    Secondly, quickstep almost has to be the most painful for your feet due to the fact that they take the most pounding since you are actually coming off the floor and landing. Gravity is a bi&*h!

    Finally, does he wear insoles or anything in his shoes? That might help with the pounding your feet endure during quickstep. Do his knees or ankles hurt too or just his feet? Is it the balls of his feet or some other part of the foot?

    I find that in quickstep your ankles are what's supposed to be able to absorb most of the impact that comes with hopping... To strengthen ankles, he should try doing calf raises and try going up as high as possible to stretch them out and put as much weight on them as possible (taking the calves out of the equation as much as possible). One foot calf raises are even harder, so that could be the next step.
  7. skwiggy

    skwiggy Well-Known Member

    First of all, I think he should see a doctor to make sure he doesn't have stress fractures or anything. Continuing to dance can seriously aggravate such a condition.

    When I had foot pain and I went to see an orthopedic doctor, I was told to examine every pair of shoes that I own. He was 100% convinced that it was being caused by some specific pair of shoes. The pain was in my arches, and was worst when I danced, but as it turned out it wasn't coming from my dance shoes.

    I was told to think about how my feet felt before, during and after wearing every pair of shoes I own. It took me less than one week to identify the culprit pair. They went in the trash, and the pain disappeared almost immediately.

    The pain returned a few years later. Without seeing a doctor, I gave some thought to my shoes again. Once again, once I identified the problem pair, I threw them in the trash and the pain was gone.
  8. White Chacha

    White Chacha Active Member

    What the others said. Don't mess with foot pain. Open quickstep is very hard on the feet, especially if you aren't soft enough in the knees.
  9. icequeen

    icequeen New Member

    Agree with previous posters that he should go see a physician. Ask to see a sports medicine specialist or foot & ankle orthopedist. Many GPs are not experienced in diagnosing specific foot problems (like stress fractures or tendinitis). Specialists can really be helpful in preventing further problems and suggesting therapies (like physical therapy, specific arch support, muscle/tendon stretches). In the meantime, it might be good to not aggravate the foot problems more, and RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) would help.
  10. Laura

    Laura New Member

    Yeah, don't ignore the pain, see a podiatrist, think about your shoes, think about your dance moves, and so on. If the pendulum is killing your partner's feet, take it out of the choreography.

    A friend of mine developed mysterious pains in the foot that developed into neuroma (a benign fatty tumor of one of the nerves in the foot), and had to stop dancing for two months for it to heal -- as well as having physical therapy and cortisone shots.
  11. icequeen

    icequeen New Member

    This might be typical physician arrogance here, but I would warn against seeing podiastrists to begin with. Foot pain should be diagnosed by a specialist physician if possible, then referred to be treated (including to PT, podiatrist, etc). I'm a former gymnast who has a lot of trouble with foot and back pain now because of delayed treatment between ages 3-8, so I speak with experience from both the perspective of a patient and provider. =)
  12. Laura

    Laura New Member

    I'm confused, a podiatrist is a foot specialist physician, isn't it?
  13. icequeen

    icequeen New Member

    No, a podiastrist is not a physician with an M.D. (i.e. has not gone to medical school). He/she obtains training specifically in care of feet/ankle, and is a DPM (doctor of podiatric medicine). This is very different from the MD orthopedist. There are specific MDs who specialize in foot/ankle surgery--they are orthopedic surgeons who have completed 4 years of medical school, 5-7 years of residency, and 2 years of fellowship. Sports medicine is another fellowship available for MDs. Other DF members might disagree, but I would trust my body to an MD specialist in orthopedic surgery or sports medicine over a podiastrist.
  14. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    huh... i did not know that, icequeen. i though podiatrists were MDs. interesting.
  15. White Chacha

    White Chacha Active Member

    I think more and more that dancers should be seen by people with sports medecine experience, rather than regular GPs or internists.
  16. icequeen

    icequeen New Member

    Yep, I get that a lot. But we newly-minted MD grads have the debt and the fatigue from our many years of school to be defensive that there are some things that we are best suited to treat. =)

    And I don't want to turn the discussion into who is qualified to treat what; suffice it to say that MDs are trained in treatment of the whole body, not just a general part, and are more likely to pick up not only a foot-specific problem but also if the problem may have other causes (i.e. calf pain radiating to feet, mineral deficiency, misuse or unbalanced use of muscles and tendons).
  17. Laura

    Laura New Member

    Ok, well, I was looking for the word that meant "foot specialist doctor" and I guess it's really orthopedist then.

    Anyway, whatever it is, my point was don't macho through the pain -- get it looked at.
  18. mummsie

    mummsie Member

    Both my husband and I have foot problems when doing QS - it puts a lot of strain on the ****tarcil (sp). We have both found that wearing magnetic shoe inserts has helped us quite a bit. I have also had major problems with the fashar plantar(sp) area of my foot. Turned my ankle badly 2 years ago walking down some steps and I was off dancing for 2 months. It still plays up from time to time doing QS so for this reason we very seldom practice it anymore. Bad for us because it always lets us down in competitions. Lucky we specialise in New Vogue sequence dancing so its not a huge problem. Mummsie
  19. TUNes2o

    TUNes2o New Member

    Lets see, a Podiatrist has 4 years of college, 4 years of Podiatry school, where the first 2 years are general medical courses and the last two years specialize in medical and surgicsl treatment of the foot. Most do a one or two year residencies in a major mdical centers. They opertate in hospitals, they are officers in the military as podiatrists. Most proessional sport teams have podiatrists on staff. They see and treat feet exclusively. What specialist
    physician sees as many feet in one day as a Podiatrist. Surly not the dermatologist , nor the GP, nor the Radiologist, Nor the Orthoipedic Specialist
    etc.etc. Maybe you want to go to the Gymnast Physician and get her opinion. Ask her how many feet she treats a day. When's the last time your GP looked at your feet.

    If your smart you will seek the opinion of a podiatrist and skip the Physician.
  20. White Chacha

    White Chacha Active Member

    In the ideal situation, I'd want someone to make sure all these specialists are talking to eachother. I'm not just a foot, or a hip, or a whatever. "The foot bone's connected to the ankle bone, and the ankle bone's connected to the leg bone..." as the old song goes. I want someone to make sure the foot doctor talks to the leg doctor, to the hip doctor... That part of modern medecine doesn't seem to work so well.

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