Tony Dovolani Gives An Update On Melissa Rycroft Following Neck Injury On Dancing: ‘I’m Very Aware Of Her Winces’

Melissa Rycroft suffered a painful neck injury last week while rehearsing for “Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars,” and Access Hollywood caught up with her pro partner, Tony Dovolani, to get an update on Melissa’s health.

“Melissa’s doing famously. The injury is there and she’s managing the pain — she’s doing therapy for it,” Tony told Access at the 19th Annual Dream Halloween event in Los Angeles on Saturday. “This week we have the Viennese waltz, which is in some ways a blessing, because it doesn’t involve her neck as much — it gives her a break.”

Adding, “But I kept it just as challenging on everything else, because, as you know, this is the All-Stars season and you can’t take it easy!”

While the former “Bachelor” beauty is pushing past the pain, Tony said he has implemented a few new safety steps to guard Melissa from additional injury.

“I have a neck brace that I keep on her to make sure that she doesn’t injure her neck any further. And I start every [rehearsal] with like, a little massage on her neck to make sure her muscles are relaxed, and we just keep going,” he said. “I’m very aware of her winces. If she winces at anything that means I have to change it.”

Despite the setback, the pair performed on Monday’s show (earning a 29.5 out of 30 for their pep rally-themed dance), and Tony said he has high hopes for their “All-Stars” future.

“Melissa’s my trooper. She brings a whole new meaning to the word mom — moms are not people you mess with — she can handle pain,” he said. “And she really wants to do well — she was not going to let this stand in our way… I truly feel that [Melissa] is the best chance I’ve ever had at winning.”

Watch Tony and Melissa take on the Viennese waltz on “Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars” – Monday at 8/7c on ABC.

-- Erin O’Sullivan

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