NYCB phenom Roman Mejia at Vail Dance Festival. Photo by Erin Baiano, via Instagram

How Dancers Perform At Their Peak in High Elevation

Touring always comes with challenges, but traveling to a higher elevation is particularly difficult. When there is less oxygen available, it can affect your endurance and make your muscles tire faster. Some performers even suffer from dizziness, headaches, nausea, shortness of breath and fatigue.


What can you do? Dr. Marc Philippon, an orthopedic surgeon who works with dancers at the Vail Dance Festival—which is 8000 feet above sea level—offers these tips.

• Before you leave, increase your cardio cross-training to boost your endurance.

• Arrive early, if possible. Spend at least one day avoiding exercise and getting as much sleep as possible.

• Drink lots of fluids. Coconut water or sports drinks are particularly helpful to replace lost electrolytes.

• Avoid alcohol—it slows down the acclimatization process.

• Don't smoke.

• Eat a high-carb, low-salt diet to keep your fluids at optimal levels.

• If you've experienced mountain sickness before or have anemia, ask your doctor for medication.

• Use the oxygen tanks whenever you're backstage.

• If you feel dizzy, have a hard time catching your breath or experience headaches that won't go away, see a doctor

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Topical Pain Relievers Are the Next Item on Your Dancer Self-Care Supply List

With the stressors of the pandemic still lingering more than one year later, self-care is, rightfully, a priority for everyone right now. But dancers have always known the importance of keeping their bodies and minds as healthy as possible. After all, your body is your instrument, and as we make our long-awaited returns to the studio and stage, finding self-care strategies that work for you will be crucial to getting back up to speed—mentally and physically—with your rigorous performing and training schedule.

Dancers have a myriad of options to choose from when it comes to treating minor ailments like soreness, swelling and bruising. One that's quickly gaining popularity are topical pain relievers, which provide targeted, temporary relief of minor pain. These days, there's more than just your tried-and-true Tiger Balm on the shelves. From CBD lotions to warming gels and patches, finding the product that's right for you can be as difficult as finding the perfect Rockette-red shade of lipstick…but even more beneficial to your dance career.

Read on for our breakdown of some of the most common ingredients to look out for in the topical pain relief aisle.

GO DEEPER SHOW LESS
July 2021