Ballet dancing shoes

Dance Physiotherapy

We have a great team of physios with many years of experience in dance to keep you on your toes.

While some dance injuries result from a single event like a poor jump landing many come about from mild technique and training errors that are repeated many times over.  Overloading intensity near exams and performances is a common factor in injury. We assess, treat, strengthen and evaluate the cause to get you back on your toes as soon as possible.

Dance Assessments

A detailed assessment at any age will identify strength and flexibility issues that could be contributing to poor performance or injury. After the assessment we design a home programme so you can strengthen specific weaknesses and elevate your performance. We can also design you a specific strengthening programme in our Clinical Pilates exercise studio on our Reformers, Trap tables and Wunda chairs where our instructors will help you focus on achieving your dance strength goals. If you are too busy to attend our studio we can develop a home programme of exercise.

Pre-pointe Assessments

Going en Pointé is a big step in a young dancer’s career. We assess young dancers proceeding to pointé to determine not only if their feet are strong enough for pointe but also if their bodies are strong and stable so the feet aren’t overloaded by weakness further up the chain, especially in the core and pelvis. A home programme will be prescribed so you can achieve the strength you need for the transition to pointe. We can provide a report both for you and your teacher so they assist with specific strengthening goals.

Dance Injury Treatment

Our experience gives us extra insight into dance injuries, their immediate treatment and the recovery pathway from injury back to full dance performance.

Dance Conditioning

Pilates has been the strengthening exercise of choice for dancers wanting to perform at their best for many years. The founder of Pilates was Joseph Pilates and he worked with the New York ballet dancers and famous choreographers of his time so dance technique was incorporated into his exercises. We have taken the principles of Pilates and merged it with the latest in sports physiotherapy and dance physiotherapy to bring you a client specific exercise system which we now call Clinical Pilates. We can design you an individualised programme for performance enhancement or to rehabilitate you fully from injury.


Our Dance Physiotherapy Team

Jenny Birckel – (APA Sports Physiotherapist) started working with QDSE in 1990 and has performed pre-entry assessments and treatments for over 30 years. She also had a clinic in the Australian Dance Performance Institute where assessments and treating dancers was a regular event. Jenny began her journey into Pilates in 1995 as she sought an exercise solution to dancers with weaknesses and injuries.

Jenny is the director of the Pilates Institute of Queensland and runs Pilates training courses for physiotherapists, exercise physiologists, dance teachers and Fitness professionals.  

Maria Yee specializes in dance & sports injuries and musculoskeletal conditions.

Maria trained in numerous dance styles herself, including classical ballet and Chinese dance. She presented her honours thesis on musculoskeletal profiles of pre-professional ballet dancers at the International Association for Dance Medicine & Science annual meeting in Switzerland in 2014, and at the World Congress of Physical Therapy the following year. 

Maria has since worked with established professional contemporary and ballet companies including Les Misérables (Australia), Singapore Dance Theatre, and T.H.E dance company, conducting functional assessments and dance specific screening on top of injury management. She works closely with a number of Brisbane’s dance schools, and regularly conducts pre-pointe assessments and dance screening for dance students. She also runs dance specific Pilates studio sessions at Agility to help dancers get the best from their bodies. 

Michael PostMichael graduated from the University of Queensland with a Masters in Physiotherapy. He was the recipient of multiple Dean’s commendations of academic excellence throughout his studies and place in the top three for highest clinical placement grades in his year group. He also has a Bachelor’s of Sport and Exercise Science and three years’ experience teaching Matwork and Reformer Pilates. Michael has a keen interest in sports physiotherapy, specifically dance injury prevention and management after having trained in classical ballet and contemporary dance himself. 

Andrea Maude is an APA Sports Physiotherapist  and part of our dance injury team.

Jo Kaighin has many years of experience treating and assessing sports and dance injuries. While she is a generalist musculoskeletal physiotherapist she has seen many dancers in our clinic and is spot on with finding a diagnosis, treatment and working them hard to rehabilitate and return to dance. 

Bones and Balance Article

Bones & Balance Classes at Agility

Aged Care Royal Commission identifies need for falls prevention programs for older people.

With the recent press surrounding aged care in Australia, and the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, Agility Physiotherapy is proud to be delivering Bones and Balance classes. Our Bones and Balance classes are run by our highly experienced Physiotherapists and are designed to improve strength, stability and balance, reduce falls risk and improve bone density.

If you would like more information about our classes, or would like to book in, please call or email either our Ascot or Bulimba practice.

The article below is from the Australian Physiotherapy Association and highlights the essential nature of promoting and maintaining strength and mobility as we age.

The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) has welcomed the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, which identified promoting and maintaining mobility to reduce the risk of life-threatening falls in older people. It has called on the federal government to roll out a comprehensive plan for implementation of its recommendations that has person centred care, not cost centred, as its basis.

The APA made a total of six submissions to the Royal Commission and presented expert evidence on falls prevention programs for both physical and mental wellbeing.

Promoting and maintaining mobility and reducing the risk of life-threatening falls in older people was noted as critical in the final report, which found that access to physiotherapists, who are highly trained and skilled in strength, balance and mobility training, was often lacking in aged care.

The report recognised that “mobility was closely linked with people’s health and their quality of life [and that] poor mobility increased the risk of falls and fall-related injuries due to deconditioning and reduced muscle strength.”

APA National President Scott Willis said, “Falls are the number one cause of preventable death in residential aged care. The lack of investment in falls prevention programs over a long period of time, particularly when there is such strong evidence for their value, is an oversight that has had tragic consequences for too many families.”

“The Royal Commission has rightly identified the critical role that physiotherapists play in aged care. These are highly skilled mobility experts who are literally helping to save and improve lives by ensuring residents are active, mobile and ultimately confident in their movement.”

“We know that mobility programs led by physiotherapists can reduce the number of falls in residential aged care by 55 per cent – the government simply has no excuse not to fund this critical care for older Australians.”

The report also found that those living with incontinence and dementia often received substandard care, which the APA has called out many times.

Mr. Willis said, “Appropriately qualified and experienced health professionals must be employed to provide the complex care and support that these extremely vulnerable people need. We have talked about team-based, holistic care in all health settings for a long time. There’s no more critical place for this to start than in aged care.”