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Don't Keep Injury Secrets!

Physical therapists are experts in dealing with injuries, but they can't help if they don't know about it!

You might be wondering who would keep an injury secret. The answer is: a lot of people! And it's especially common among performing artists like dancers, musicians, singers, circus performers, and actors.

Why would someone hide an injury instead of getting the help they need?

There are a few reasons:

  • Stigma: Though things are changing, some people still subscribe to the old "no pain, no gain" mentality. They might see reporting an injury as a sign of weakness or letting the cast down. This pressure can come from choreographers, directors, parents, fellow performers, supervisors, or even fans.

  • Fear of loss: Performers worry about being pulled from the show, losing their role, or missing out on opportunities. They might be afraid that an understudy or swing will shine in their absence.

  • Competitive advantage: There's a fear that an injury might make you vulnerable in the spotlight, especially during auditions or high-stakes competitions.

But here's the thing: these reasons are all shortsighted.

Pushing through an injury can make it worse, turning a minor issue into a major one. It's never weak to report an injury, and you're not letting anyone down by taking care of yourself. In fact, you're doing the right thing by allowing someone healthy to step in and ensuring the show goes on, or protecting your future performance opportunities.

Revealing your injury can also be a power move. It shows transparency, vulnerability, and trust. It demonstrates that you're prioritizing your health and long-term career, not just a single audition or performance. It can even spark empathy and admiration from casting directors or audiences who recognize your dedication and courage.

Hiding an injury only risks making it worse, potentially derailing your entire career. Taking care of yourself is the ultimate competitive advantage, because it allows you to perform at your best, consistently.

So, if you're a performing artist and you're injured, don't hide it!

Here's what you should do:

  1. Talk to someone you trust: This could be a choreographer, director, manager, trusted cast mate, teacher, or even a friend.

  2. Seek professional help: A physical therapist specializing in performing arts medicine can assess your injury and create a treatment plan that gets you back on stage, safely.

Remember, your body is your instrument. Take care of it, and it will take care of you.

Here are some additional tips for performing artists:

  • Warm up and cool down properly before and after every rehearsal and performance.

  • Listen to your body and take rest days when you need them.

  • Cross-train to prevent injuries and improve overall fitness.

  • Learn proper technique from qualified instructors.

  • Speak up if you're feeling pain or discomfort.

Don't let an injury sideline your passion. Get the help you need and get back to doing what you love.


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