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Dancing girls and painful knees - Osgood-Schlatter?

(7 Posts)
NaughtyNigella Fri 02-May-08 10:31:28

DD1 is 12 and dances (rather than walks). she does 2 hour long ballet classes a week.
Since december she has been suffering from a painful and swollen left knee. This flares up after a class then calms down and goes away completely during holidays.
Now she has an exam looming so is having extra practice plus practice at home and now both knees are painful. there is a noticable lump under each kneecap and she can't kneel on them.
She also walks 1.5 miles to school and back every day.
Have googled bad knees and think it is probably Osgood-Schlatter disease.
Does anyone know if she should stop dancing completely? what would improve it or make it worse? She's also about to start pointe. will this make her knees even worse?

rachw1 Fri 02-May-08 10:49:18

I'm an ex-dancer (with a dancing daughter... I didn't manage to put her off) and please do get this looked at by a physio. I had (and still have) terrible knee problems caused by my dancing that would not have developed to the extent that they did had I understood the problems and adjusted my training accordingly.

A physio should be able to give advice that you can pass on to your daughter's ballet teacher. It might be a case that she needs to work more gently for a few months to give the knees time to heal, or avoid certain exercises. I took up yoga and Pilates for a few months when I was a dance student as I couldn't do a full ballet class but needed to keep my fitness up.

Please do get this checked out by an expert, definitely before she goes en pointe as that is very stressful on the joints. It is unlikely she would have to completely stop dancing but might need to take it a bit easier for a while to get the problem sorted out.

NaughtyNigella Fri 02-May-08 10:54:49

will collar a friendly physio at work - or get GP to refer her.
don't think i could stop her dancing short of cutting off her legs.

suzpow Wed 23-Jan-13 09:31:42

Hello. Poor DD - if its Osgood Schlatter, she will need to stop dancing for 3 weeks. My name is Suzanne Powell and I run a web company. We have worked with Jenny Strickland and Bill Goldie for several years of The Strickland Protocol.

You can ask Jenny Strickland your questions on the facebook page. is the facebook page

There is an official website and an excellent facebook page which gives genuine unbiased feedback from parents; you can also post questions there for Jenny to answer. Good luck. is the official website where you can buy the manual (you can also get a free preview)

digerd Wed 23-Jan-13 16:46:48

I had a ballet class once a week until I was 12, and then 3 times a week. At 16-18 I trained everyday as a student, and know of nobody but 1 who damaged their knees and that was cartilage in both knees
Decades on, I tore my cartilage, just walking, but had noticed a pulling ache walking up and down stairs for a few years before.
I do not know what her lumps are that come and go. So you must get that properly checked with MRI scan.
Landing from jumps especially onto one foot causes the most strain as the knees must be over the toes and not twist inwards, and the landing requires great control to avoid damage to the knees.
Margot Fontyeyn had arthritis is one of her knees, but don't know at what age as she kept dancing until 60-61.

fivecupsoftea Thu 24-Jan-13 19:59:05

My brother had osgood slatter's disease as a child, I remember he had to give up sport for a while.

besmirchedandbewildered Thu 24-Jan-13 20:05:24

See a GP and get referred to a knee specialist, then you at least know if she's doing more damage by continuing to dance or if she's "just" in pain that can be managed medically.
I used to ice skate 6-7 times a week and had a growing issue (not Osgood-Schlatters but similar ilk), it led to lots of knee pain but I didn't have to stop and was prescribed painkillers till I grew out of it.

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