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  Inside Out East Midlands: Monday October 31, 2005

Ballet injuries

Ballet dancer
Dancing through the pain barrier - pushing the body to its limits

Inside Out investigates how ballet dancers are sustaining injuries in their quest for fame.

We meet a Derbyshire woman who has suffered crippling injuries to her feet as a result of dancing.

Ballet is a physically gruelling activity. Dancers often push their bodies to the limits.

It is also very competitive which can add to the physical stress.

Dancers who dream of fame and fortune sometimes perform when injured fearing that someone else will take their place.


Types of ballet injury:
Acute - sudden onset e.g. sprained ankle.
Chronic - slow onset e.g. overuse.

Prevention of injury:
- Maintain good fitness levels.
- Identify individual strengths and weaknesses.
- Strengthen abdominal and lower back muscles.
- Rest is important. Many injuries are sustained in periods of fatigue and a lack of concentration due to tiredness or stress.
- A balanced, nutritious diet helps.
- Avoid ballistic (bouncing) stretches, as they can cause muscle or tendon injuries.
- Always warm up/ cool down.

Source: Northern Ballet

The level of precision required is comparable to that of an Olympic gymnast.

The main causes of ballet injuries are overwork, repetition, fatigue, inadequate technique, dancing in an inappropriate environment, and poor diet.

Some dancers have eating disorders as a result of trying to keep down their weight.

Inside Out investigates the permanent damage that can be caused by ballet dancing.

When injured, it is important for dancers to seek professional, medical advice.

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Carjacking demo
A frightening experience - carjacking demonstration -

Would you know what to do if you were sitting at a road junction and a car thief hammered on the window shouting at you to get out?

This is carjacking.

Carjacking is an opportunist crime, usually being committed by a thief searching for easy pickings.

Inside Out investigates this growing crime and meets a Derbyshire driver who has been the victim of carjacking.

Avoid becoming a victim

Here are some tips on how to avoid becoming a victim of carjacking:

Always park in well-lit areas, if you plan to arrive or leave after dark

As you walk to your car be alert to suspicious persons sitting in cars nearby

Watch out for young males loitering in the area (handing out flyers, etc)

Don't be a target by turning your back while loading packages into the car

In the city, always drive with your car doors locked and windows up

If you are bumped in traffic, by young males, be suspicious of the accident

If you are ever confronted by an armed car-jacker don't resist

Give up your keys or money after demanded without resistance

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Railway trespass

Police on tracks
Policing the problem - tracking down the offenders

An increasing number of children are putting their lives at risk by venturing onto railway lines in the Midlands.

Whether it is a game of ‘chicken’, putting objects on the tracks, or simply taking a shortcut home, transport police receive up to 20 reports of track trespassing a day.

Five children have died on the region’s railways in the last year alone, but officers believe the message is still not getting through.

Inside Out meets Dannette Scott, the mother of 12-year-old Gez, a schoolboy who was killed while playing with friends on a railway line.

Video to stop  trespassers
Getting the message across - a new video to stop trespassers

We follow Dannette as she visits for the first time the station where her son died and asks police what is being done to stop similar accidents.

We join the officer whose job it is to patrol the region’s rail lines.

Inside Out also meets the former train driver who is haunted by an accident in which four children died.

And we look at what could be done in the future with a film made by young people whose friend was killed by a train with a message to stop trespassers going onto dangerous railway lines in the Midlands.

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