Thursday, November 27, 2008

New from Google

Google has a plethora of great features. A new one that my father recently discovered is Google "street view". As a function of Google Maps you can see a picture of the exact location that you are searching. For example here is the studio where American Repertory Ballet rehearses.

The advantage to this in a dancer's life is that one can find a stage door or new rehearsal location before arriving for a performance or service. Or considering that audition season is right around the corner, one can see the building as part of travel planning.

Go Google!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Dance Specific Health Resources

Health care and injury management is an enormous issue for dancers and dance companies. Finding the right treatment can be crucial to getting a dancer back to work or training if injury occurs. Below are a few links to national organizations that can locate a dance/sport specialty service.

American College of Sport Medicine- they have members with dance medicine expertise.

American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons- you can search for a sports medicine specialist, but I couldn't find any advanced function to denote dance specific.

I did find this interesting article when searching the site for dance:

Keeping dancers on their toes
Dr. Richard Coughlin positively affects is the dance community in San Francisco. “Dance is an art form I came to appreciate when training in New York City,” Dr. Coughlin said. “It’s a beautiful combination of high culture and athleticism.”

While serving as a board member for a local dance company, Dr. Coughlin learned that, unfortunately, many performers are either uninsured or underinsured. “It soon became very clear to me that the dancers were a disadvantaged patient population,” he said, explaining dance troops often can’t afford to offer health insurance coverage for their members.

To serve these dancers’ medical needs and thank them for their commitment to the arts, Dr. Coughlin is one of the medical specialists who provides them with free care through UCSF’s Dance Injury/Prevention Clinic, which is housed in a new performance building, ODC Commons. The clinic recently expanded to offer general health services, such as nutrition counseling. “It’s become a healthy dancers’ program focusing on more than musculoskeletal injuries,” Dr. Coughlin said.

American Orthopedic Socity for Sports Medicine
- you can search for a sports medicine specialist, but I couldn't find any advanced function to denote dance specific.

American Medical Society for Sports Medicine- you can search for a sports medicine specialist, but I couldn't find any advanced function to denote dance specific.

American College of Sports Medicine- Certified Professionals for health and fitness training.

International Association for Dance Medicine and Science- some great research including papers on bone density and female dancers as well as medical data on starting pointe.

Harkness Center for Dance Medicine- the best. Research, workshops and cutting edge specialists- but it is in NYC.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The real nuts and bolts.....FINANCIALS

Seeing that we are facing a trying economic time, have you ever wondered about the fiscal responsibility of a particular non-profit organization. As part of a non-profit status, financial information is public information. Guidestar is the place to get that information.

Guidestar states:

If you care about nonprofits and the work they do, then you're affected by what GuideStar does—even if this is your first visit to You see, we gather and publicize information about nonprofit organizations. Our reach is far and wide. Our database is broad and deep.

GuideStar's mission is to revolutionize philanthropy and nonprofit practice by providing information that advances transparency, enables users to make better decisions, and encourages charitable giving.

We encourage nonprofits to share information about their organizations openly and completely. Any nonprofit in our database can update its report with information about its mission, programs, leaders, goals, accomplishments, and needs—for free. We combine the information that nonprofits supply with data from several other sources. You'll find GuideStar data:

  • on this Web site
  • on our many partners' websites.
  • in computer applications used by funding entities and private companies who work with nonprofits

If you're new to GuideStar, check out our demo for new users to learn more about finding the nonprofit information you need. Then start searching our site-it's free! You'll get even more information if you complete ourregistration form and log in-also free!

Why are we so passionate about nonprofit information? Because the best possible decisions are made when donors, funders, researchers, educators, professional service providers, governing agencies, and the media use the quality information that we provide. Those decisions affect our world today and will continue to affect it for generations to come.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A little self promotion.

Pardon me while I foray into a bit of self promotion. It is Nutcracker time of course, and American Repertory Ballet, of which I am a member, has a very nice version of the holiday production.

This blog is meant to be a resource for dancers. Self promotion is not exactly a resource. I suppose the value in this post is a piece of advice that my husband often mentions... "Your intentions will never be fulfilled if they remain a secret."

I love this internet/digital age. There is at times too much out there to sift through, but the ability to e-blast and digitally share marketing material is a fabulous revolution.

If you are in the New York/New Jersey area and would enjoy a bit of Nutcracker merriment drop me a line and I will let you know which shows I am cast as what. (I rotate Marie, Sugar Plum, Chinese and Mirliton/German- a little more self promotion!)

Also, I am becoming a huge advocate for spreading the word about keeping the arts alive. The failing economy is already affecting the stability of many arts organizations. Broadways ticket sales are down by thousands and it was recently announced that "Spring Awakening" and "Hairspray" will be closing early next year.

The best thing that we can do is to live the arts and share our experiences with everyone we know. Perhaps a little self promotion is all we have.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Healthy Dancers- Part II

I recently attended a meeting for the Dance/USA Taskforce on Dancer Health. It is a thrill to report that over twenty professional dance companies have implemented the post-hire health screen. Although more outcomes are still in development, one great benefit is the knowledge that dancers are acquiring in reference to their primary tool- their bodies!

I find it fascinating to learn what inherent or created imbalances exist both individually and within a company of dancers. There are some incredible people in the medical field donating many long hours for the well being of dancers.

One of the resources mention in the meeting was the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science, aka IADMS. They have many articles on injury, injury prevention, healthy teaching practices and nutrition.

Here is an excerpt on fueling the dancer:

Nutrition Fact Sheet: Fueling the Dancer

To perform at their best, dancers need to be well fueled for classes, rehearsals, and performances. This paper will present a strategy for obtaining the energy needed for dance training and the right balance of carbohydrate, fat, protein, micronutrients, and fluids.

One important challenge facing many dancers is ingesting sufficient quantities of food to meet the energy demands of dance. The first step in planning a high performance diet is to be sure that the dancer is obtaining adequate caloric intake. The easiest rough estimate of how many calories a dancer requires during heavy training is 45-50 calories per kilogram of body weight for females and 50-55 calories per kilogram of body weight for males. For a more accurate assessment, dancers should consult a dietitian.

A low caloric intake will not only compromise energy availability, it can also lead to an under-ingestion of many micronutrients that could affect performance, growth and health. After calculating the number of calories needed, the next step is to estimate the necessary amount of carbohydrate, fat, and protein, the building blocks of the diets.

A dancer's diet should be composed of about 55-60% carbohydrate, 12-15% protein, and 20-30% fat