Aches and pains can be so annoying prior to performances, examinations, auditions or classes where you need to be on top form. Normally a few days rest will do the trick, or even a trip to the doctor. But we don’t always have that time! That is why I will give you some of “old granny’s advice” to will help cure these aches and pains, whether you are dealing with blisters, cuts, wounds or muscle tension. You might think me crazy, but give it a go and I’m sure you won’t regret it!
There are a few ways to conquer a blister. The first method is to put an alcohol- soaked cloth over the blister. It will sooth the pain and draw out the moisture. Keep it there for a few minutes and then wait a while – don’t dance straight after because it will defeat the purpose. Another tips is to keep your feet dry. The sweat caused by dancing does no good for the blister. Sprinkle a bit of cornstarch inside your shoe and on your feet (or any other type of powder you prefer). The powder will absorb the excess moisture. Try also switching cotton tights with synthetic or polyester, because the cotton will absorb sweat.
If you have been so unfortunate to have developed soft corns on your feet, it will help it to lay a slice of fresh garlic on the affected spot every morning and evening. For endangered areas you can also try smearing pork fat (I know, it sounds disgusting) or soft soap which are helpful for preventive measure.
This should not be done instead of warming up, because a good warm up is also very important. But if you want to quicken the effect, soak a pair of socks in brine, which you make with normal salt and water. Put the soaked socks on and put another, dry pair on top of them. This is both good for the skin and encourages the circulation of blood in your foot. When your feet have begun warming up again, take the socks off and wash your feet. Your feet should now be warm and ready!
Wounds and cuts
Place the membrane of an onion on the wound. This has an antiseptic effect and in time will fasten the healing of the wound. Keep it there for as long as possible. Although wounds are slow in healing, you can also speed it up by placing some honey on it. Honey has natural antibacterial properties. For small burns, try applying some butter smeared on a thin slice of potato. You can also use aloe vera gel as it will soothe the pain, and for fresher wounds, dust a bit of cayenne pepper on the wound to stop the bleeding.
Inflammation or stub injuries
Take the outer leaves of a cabbage and flatten them to roll out the juices using a rolling pin. Lay the leaves over the affected area and fasten them with a bandage. Change the leaves several times for the full effect. The cabbage leaves will bring coolness to the area. You can also try making a compress of cottage cheese and laying it on the affected area, and if you are bold enough, a slice of raw meat (Although that was used more in the old days).
Put hot mashed potato in a cloth bag and compress on the tense muscle. Muscle tension can also be dealt with by stretching or a good old massage.
I hope some of these home remedies will prove useful for you. However, if your aches and pains prove more serious, please consult a doctor.
Until next time,
Annie’s Remedy (2005) Wounds & Cuts: Natural Home Care. [online] Available at: http://www.anniesremedy.com/chart_remedy.php?tag=cuts [Accessed: February 18, 2013].
Reinhardt, A., (2008). Pointe shoes: tips & tricks for choosing, tuning and care. Alton, Hampshire, Dance Books.