At BJP Physie, we believe that girls should be able to dance for their whole life. And so our choreography is tailored to the physical needs of their bodies, as they grow and mature – from a 3 year old in the preschooler class, right through childhood, adolescence, adulthood and into their senior years. Physie is a life-long passion, with moves that will challenge you – your strength, your core control, your expression, your musicality and, yes your flexibility – but in a safe way.
Alarming trends amongst young dancers to oversplit are causing serious injury, especially for teenagers. Ligaments are not elastic like muscles. Once stretched to 104% of their original laxity, they can never return to the same length. Ever.
Girls aged 10-15 years old experience growth spurts. Damage to bone growth plates during these years can affect how bones develop into adulthood, with possible bone deformity resulting.
In the oversplits there is excess anterior compression of the hip which can lead to instability of the joint, torn ligaments and damage to cartilage.
In physie, the most you will ever need to split, either on the floor or standing in a long line balance is 180 degrees. We do not do split leaps requiring the legs to fly up past 180 degrees. There is no benefit to overstretching the hips and risking injury and long-term problems.
Signs of over stretching
- Feeling a burning sensation while you are stretching
- Feeling the muscle tearing/pulling strongly while you are stretching rather than a slight pull
- Over-bearing or shooting pain occurs while stretching
- Swelling in the muscle after you have stretched it
- A sudden decrease in athletic output/performance
Tips to avoid over stretching:
- Always warm up before you stretch.
- When holding a stretch, make sure that you do it for no more than 30-60 seconds.
- Avoid bouncing while stretching (especially with hamstring muscles).
- Stretch within your comfort zone.
- Take slow and deep breaths while you are stretching and relax your body.