Injury patterns and risk factors associated with Irish dance A comprehensive review

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Kathryn Foster

Abstract

As scientific interest in Irish dance (ID) has increased over the past two decades, the body of ID literature on injuries and risk factors has rapidly evolved. However, all studies to date have been isolated with no work existing that cohesively integrates the findings. Thus, this paper reviews the current state of scientific ID literature, synthesizing relationships between the results of independent studies on ID injuries and risk factors. To begin, we characterize the nature of ID injuries, extrapolating trends in the commonly affected anatomical sites and most prevalent diagnoses. Next, we identify the risk factors underlying these injury patterns. We focus this discussion by dichotomizing the risk factors into two main categories: biomechanical and cultural. To conclude, we note areas in which ID research is incomplete and suggest ways to address these deficiencies. As the first comprehensive review of ID, this paper serves as a vital starting point for unifying the field of ID research and further developing our scientific understanding of ID.

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