Lower extremity and spine characteristics in young dancers with and without patellofemoral pain

Nili Steinberg*, Shay Tenenbaum, Israel Hershkovitz, Aviva Zeev, Itzhak Siev-Ner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Very little is known about patellofemoral pain syndrome (PPFS) among young dancers. Understanding the mechanism of the injury and implementing a preventative programme are important in order to minimize the risk of PFPS. The aim of the current study is to determine the extent to which factors such as lower extremity and back characteristics are common among dancers with PFPS. The study population included 271 dancers with PFPS and 271 non-injured dancers, aged 10–16 years. All dancers were screened for morphometric profile, dance discipline (h/week), anatomical anomalies (present/absent of scoliosis, genu valgus/varum, etc.), and joint range of motion (measured by goniometer at the hip, knee, ankle, foot, and spinal joints). The predicting factors for PFPS among young dancers (10–11 years old) were: hyper hip abduction (OR = 0.906) and lower back and hamstring flexibility (OR = 3.542); for adolescent dancers (12–14 years old): hyper ankle dorsiflexion (OR = 0.888), hind foot-varum (OR = 0.260), and mobility of patella (OR = 2.666); and, for pre-mature dancers (15–16 years old): scoliosis (OR = 5.209), limited ankle plantar-flexion (OR = 1.060), and limited hip internal rotation (OR = 1.063). In conclusion, extrinsic and intrinsic parameters predisposing the dancers to knee injuries should be identified by screening in early stages of dance classes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-180
Number of pages15
JournalResearch in Sports Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - 3 Apr 2017


  • Alignment
  • dance
  • joint range of motion
  • patellofemoral pain syndrome
  • scoliosis


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