Magazine article Dance Spirit

Acupuncture Acumen

Magazine article Dance Spirit

Acupuncture Acumen

Article excerpt

ACUPUNCTURE IS A STAPLE IN THE LIVES OF THESE FOUR DANCERS.

*Sara Sugihara started dancing at 17, but by the time she was 22, the jumping required of her modern training had created severe ankle strain: At one point, she was forced to wear braces on both of her ankles and knees. All her movements, from jumping to releves to arabesques, were affected by her injuries. "Over the years, not only has acupuncture repeatedly helped me to heal, it has helped me feel the way that the parts of my body are interconnected," she says. "It has helped me have a better awareness of my body and helped me figure out how to best move my body while I'm dancing."

*Brian Monahan, a 23-year-old dancer and actor with Theater-works USA, had a similar experience with acupuncture. "The specific touch of the needles helped me feel what I had been holding, so that I could use my own awareness to try to prevent more damage," he says. Brian dislocated his left kneecap several years ago. After regular medical treatment, which included several MRIs and anti-inf lamrnatories, he was only marginally better. "I gave up and decided that I would forever have a bad knee," he says. Last March, he injured the same knee during rehearsal. "I went from chronic pain to acute, searing, blinding pain," Brian says. "My mobility was shot and there was nothing I could do to alleviate the pain and regain my range of motion. I had given up on ever feeling 100 percent in my legs again." Brian decided to try acupuncture and not only did the acute pain disappear after only one treatment, the chronic pain has been decreasing with subsequent treatment. …

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