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Teacher Training

The Healthy Dancer

The Healthy Dancer

The Healthy Dancer – ABT Guidelines for Dancer Health was published to set the precedent for scientific and artistic cooperation in the dance world. This manual is the collective work of the Medical Advisory Board – a group of medical professionals from the fields of sports medicine, nutrition, physical therapy, and orthopedics – and the ABT Artistic Advisors who created the ABT National Training Curriculum. The first of its kind, The Healthy Dancer is a testament to the necessity of scientific and artistic collaboration.

This manual enables ABT to share the best practices of healthy dance training with parents, students, and teachers around the world by addressing the needs of young dancers both pre-professional and recreational. While focused primarily on ballet training, the advice in the manual is applicable to all types of dancers and athletes.

The Healthy Dancer is divided into three parts:

Part 1: Anatomy and Injuries

This section presents an overview of anatomy and kinesiology with an emphasis on injury prevention and recovery. There are clear diagrams that relate anatomy to dance and illustrate common dance injuries. Turnout and introduction of pointe work is also discussed.

Part 2: Development and Health

This section offers advice specific to the development and health of the young dancer, addressing phases of development and the corresponding roles of the teacher and parent for each phase. Principles of healthy, holistic training are discussed including psychological and emotional factors, environment, nutrition, and safe strength and flexibility training.

Part 3: Risk-Management, Medical and Facility Guidelines

This section is geared toward teachers and makes recommendations for the creation of a healthy training environment, outlining recommended safety policies and practices for dance studios.

All teachers participating in ABT NTC Teacher Training Intensives will receive a copy of The Healthy Dancer.

Copies of The Healthy Dancer are $20 each and can be purchased directly from American Ballet Theatre.

The Healthy Dancer – ABT Guidelines for Dancer Health is published by Macfadden Performing Arts Media.

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