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WYON MATTHEW A.; DEIGHAN, MARTINE A.; NEVILL, ALAN M.; DOHERTY, MICHAEL; MORRISON, SHARON L.; ALLEN, NICK; JOBSON, SIMON J.; GEORGE, SIMON
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: May 2007
ORIGINAL RESEARCH: PDF Only
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ABSTRACTThis study examined the cardiorespiratory and anthropometric indices of professional classical ballet dancers in relation to company seniority, gender, and supplemental training. Forty-nine participants from an international touring company carried out a peak VO2 test and vertical jump test. Anthropometric measurements and supplemental training activities were also recorded for each participant. Statistical analyses showed significant differences between gender and dancer seniority levels. Gender differences were seen for jump height (M = 52.7 ± 7.12 cm; = −37.6 ± 5.32 cm) and peak VO2(M = 49.32 ± 3.72 ml·kg-1·min-1;= −43.3 ± 5.16 ml·kg-1·min-1). Differences were also seen between dancer levels for peak VO2 (artist = 46.47 ± 4.67 ml·kg-1·min-1; first artist = 42.72 ± 5.81 ml·kg-1·min-1; soloist = 43.38 ± 7.14 ml·kg-1·min-1; principal = 49.04 ± 3.63 ml·kg-1·min-1) and jump height (artist = 42.0 ± 9.11 cm; first artist = 50.33 ± 11.65 cm; soloist = 45.6 ± 9.78 cm; principal = 44.67 ± 9.53 cm). Pairwise post hoc comparisons showed that corps and principals had significantly greater relative peak VO2 than first artists and soloists (p < 0.05), while soloists and first artists had significantly greater jump heights compared to principals and corps (p < 0.05). Analysis of covariance modeling indicated that the self-reported mode of supplemental training had no association with relative peak VO2 or the percentage at which ventilatory threshold occurred. The present study has provided further insight into the cardiorespiratory profiles of classical ballet dancers, where soloists have significantly greater power capacities compared to principals and corps, who in turn had significantly greater aerobic power. These data can help guide strength and conditioning intervention strategies that need to take into account the nuances of the different seniority levels within a dance company.

This study examined the cardiorespiratory and anthropometric indices of professional classical ballet dancers in relation to company seniority, gender, and supplemental training. Forty-nine participants from an international touring company carried out a peak VO2 test and vertical jump test. Anthropometric measurements and supplemental training activities were also recorded for each participant. Statistical analyses showed significant differences between gender and dancer seniority levels. Gender differences were seen for jump height (M = 52.7 ± 7.12 cm; = −37.6 ± 5.32 cm) and peak VO2(M = 49.32 ± 3.72 ml·kg-1·min-1;= −43.3 ± 5.16 ml·kg-1·min-1). Differences were also seen between dancer levels for peak VO2 (artist = 46.47 ± 4.67 ml·kg-1·min-1; first artist = 42.72 ± 5.81 ml·kg-1·min-1; soloist = 43.38 ± 7.14 ml·kg-1·min-1; principal = 49.04 ± 3.63 ml·kg-1·min-1) and jump height (artist = 42.0 ± 9.11 cm; first artist = 50.33 ± 11.65 cm; soloist = 45.6 ± 9.78 cm; principal = 44.67 ± 9.53 cm). Pairwise post hoc comparisons showed that corps and principals had significantly greater relative peak VO2 than first artists and soloists (p < 0.05), while soloists and first artists had significantly greater jump heights compared to principals and corps (p < 0.05). Analysis of covariance modeling indicated that the self-reported mode of supplemental training had no association with relative peak VO2 or the percentage at which ventilatory threshold occurred. The present study has provided further insight into the cardiorespiratory profiles of classical ballet dancers, where soloists have significantly greater power capacities compared to principals and corps, who in turn had significantly greater aerobic power. These data can help guide strength and conditioning intervention strategies that need to take into account the nuances of the different seniority levels within a dance company.

Address correspondence to Dr. Matthew Wyon, m.wyon@wlv.ac.uk.

© 2007 National Strength and Conditioning Association