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Pathologic Disorders of the Foot in Professional Female Flamenco Dancers

José M Castillo-López Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.

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Pedro V Munuera-Martínez Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.

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Cristina Algaba-Guisado Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.

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María Reina-Bueno Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.

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Nadia Salti-Pozo Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.

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Alfonso Vargas-Macías
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Background: The foot is the main element of artistic creation in flamenco dancing. At the professional level, the foot undergoes high musculoskeletal demands, predisposing the development of podiatric pathologic disorders in this group. The principal objective of this study was to determine the most common foot lesions in professional female flamenco dancers.

Methods: In a cross-sectional observational study of 44 female professional flamenco dancers, the participants completed a short questionnaire about their demographic features, number of hours danced per week, and years of professional activity. Any foot lesions presented by the participant were also recorded.

Results: Some type of pathologic foot condition was noted in 75% of the women, with a particularly high prevalence of hallux abducto valgus (61.4%), hypermobility of the first ray (43.2%), claw toe (40.9%), and varus fifth toe (37.5%) compared with the general population. No significant differences in the presence of pathologic disorders of the foot were found according to the time dedicated to dance or the years of professional activity.

Conclusions: Female flamenco dancers in this study had a high prevalence of podiatric medical problems: some kind of pathologic abnormality of the foot was present in 75% of the participants. Hallux abducto valgus, claw toe, and hypermobility of the first ray were the most common pathologic disorders observed.

Centro de Investigación Flamenco Telethusa, Cádiz, Spain.

Corresponding author: Pedro V. Munuera, PhD, Departamento de Podologia de la Universidad de Sevilla, Calle Avicena, s/n 41009 Sevilla, Spain. (E-mail: pmunuera@us.es)