Research in Dance Medicine and Science

Research Participation Opportunities

There is a growing body of Dance Medicine and Science focused research that aims to significantly improve our understanding of what it takes to produce healthy, high performing dancers. Organisations such as The International Association for Dance Medicine and Science (IADMS) promote research excellence within the dance medicine and science community as well as producing resources to disseminate research recommendations within the wider dance community.

Remember that research cannot happen without participants, so as dancers, teachers, choreographers, and those actively working within the dance industry you have a very valuable role to play within the scientific research process.

We know that many professional dance companies and vocational dance schools are frequently approached by researchers, undergraduate as well as postgraduate, to take part in their projects. In order to help prevent these dancers suffering from ‘research fatigue’, while encouraging participation in research, we have produced a checklist (below) for schools and companies to help you decide on the quality of research opportunities presented to you and prioritise those you take part in. These points could also apply to individuals in deciding whether to participate in research or not.

Research participation checklist:

  • Is the research at postgraduate level, with the intention for it to be published?
  • Is the research applied research that will have a practical bearing on dancers’ health, wellbeing, performance capabilities or education, on an individual level, organisational level or for the dance world at large?
  • Is the researcher planning to or have they sought input from dance professionals in choosing what to research and/or designing the research?
  • Is the researcher offering to provide feedback during and/or following the research that will be useful to the dancers and their work/training?
  • Have you or the researcher sought advice from One Dance UK’s HDP to ensure that this research project complements or adds to the research knowledge base and is not unnecessarily duplicating work already done?

If you can answer yes to these points it is likely to be worth your while taking part in a research project that may benefit dancers, company and the dance world at large.

Current opportunities:

Listed below are research projects being conducted by One Dance UK members, which are currently seeking participants. If you are interested in taking part please do get in touch with the researchers directly or if you have any questions or concerns contact the Healthier Dancer Programme:


An exploration into male dance teacher's perceptions and experiences of teaching boys and girls to dance.

Summary: Male dance teachers wanted for study exploring their perceptions and experiences of teaching boys and girls to dance. The commitment is a one hour interview at a place, day and time convenient to you. This study aims to give male dance teachers a voice and to help understand how children are motivated to start and remain in dance.

Aims: Our aim for this project is to give voice to male dance teachers in our research and learn about their experience of teaching boys and girls to dance as well as to learn about their own experiences of dancing as children. The aim is to inform best practice to support children to dance.

Further details: This project is located at The University of Northampton and The Open University. Participants are to be interviewed either at one of the universities mentioned or at their own home or dance studio. They can also be interviewed using Skype or by telephone. Interviews will take approximately an hour, although this is flexible depending on the participant’s other commitments and how long they wish to talk for. Days and times of interviews are negotiable between the participant and researcher. Participants will have the opportunity to view the transcripts of their interviews if they wish. Participants are only required for one interview but there is the opportunity to complete a follow up interview should they wish to. Ethical approval for the study has been granted by The University of Northampton Social Science Ethics Committee. Anonymity and confidentiality will be ensured.

End Date of  project: 31/03/2017

Contact details:

Dr Helen Clegg  Dr Helen Owton

Dance Floors

At the University of Wolverhampton (Walsall Campus), they are working with Harlequin Dance Floors to see which of their floors offers the best shock absorption during jumping. They are looking for participants to carry out three types of jumps whilst measuring the forces at ankle, knee and pelvis and the depth of plie. The whole test takes just over 30 minutes. If you are interested in trying out the different Harlequin Dance Floors and being a participant, please contact either Matthew Wyon ( or Anne Tournillon (