142 : Dance Medicine w/ Athletic Trainers, Marissa Piloto & Monica Lorenzo

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I have always been more of a dance in the privacy of your own home kind of guy, but some people dance nearly every waking hour of every day. For these individuals, dance is more than just a spontaneous event in their day, its a lifestyle, its a sport and they can never get enough. Just like how professional football, baseball and basketball players dedicate their lives to their craft, elite dancers are no exception. People would be up in arms if there were no sports medicine providers at football, baseball and basketball games, but these services have only recently been afforded to professional dancers. This week I chat with two Athletic Trainers who work with these elite dancers and help to keep them both healthy and performing optimally. Marissa Piloto is the Head ATC for the Brooklynettes Dance Team, Brooklyn Nets Team Hype and Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team. Marissa and I go back to our days working as students for the Rutgers Football team. Monica Lorenzo, who is the Head ATC for the Knicks Entertainment Teams, Founder & President of ROMO Fit. Inc also joins us in this episode. It was so much fun learning about the field of dance medicine and the innovations both of these women are working on to bring attention to this underserved population. Below is a list of topics we touch on throughout this episode:

Marissa with her Brooklynettes. Photo courtesy of Marissa Piloto.

Marissa with her Brooklynettes. Photo courtesy of Marissa Piloto.

  • Why the art of dance is a sport.

  • How both Marissa and Monica got into athletic training for dancers.

  • The need for highlighting the comeback in the world of dance.

  • Why dancers are extremity in-tuned with their bodies and how that helps the ATC’s who treat them.

  • The similarities between track and dance athletes.

  • Culture of toughness in dance and the dancer mentality.

  • The shift in the dancer mentality over that last few years.

  • Misty May’s Achilles injury on Dancing With The Stars and how this led to changes on the show.

  • The evolution/history of dance medicine.

  • Advice for athletic trainers who want to get into dance medicine.

  • Common dance injuries.

  • Why concussions are also a problem in dance.

  • The worst injuries they have seen in dance.

  • Why it is not just lower extremity injuries dancers have to worry about.

  • Waffle Crew NYC on Ellen – Marissa’s Crew

  • Why dancers are willing go to practice after practice and the unique challenge this presents for athletic trainers.

    “This is your one body and it is not going to last forever if you keep grinding it into the ground.”- Monica

Monica with her NY Knicks Dance Team. Photo courtesy of Marissa Piloto.

Monica with her NY Knicks Dance Team. Photo courtesy of Marissa Piloto.

  • “Someone is waiting in the wings for you to fail”- the pressures in dance culture and how the mentality is changing.

  • The importance of getting the athlete’s whole story before working with them.

  • The unique challenges dancers are presented with in their return to the stage after injury (particularly concussions).

  • How Monica and Marissa approach injury prevention training with dancers’ busy schedules.

  • “Fitting the image” and its effect on injuries.

  • Warm-ups and cool downs for dancers.

  • Custom prophylactic taping colors inspired by the Marissa and Monica.

  • Recovery tactics for dancers.

  • The science behind the cool down.

  • Getting a handle on emotions after injury.

  • The transition to life after dance.

  • Monica’s company, ROMO Fit – Post Rehab Strength and Conditioning

  • Body Ignition – the new injury prevention workshop Monica and Marissa have put together.

    • Connecting Mind , Body and Life'; bridging all of these together safely

  • Why saying no makes you tough.



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Where Can you connect with Marissa?

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Download Episode 142 : iTunes | Stitcher