03/06/2009 at 12:00 AM EST
With singer Jewel
and Access Hollywood
host Nancy O’Dell
having to bow out of the competition due to injuries, actor Gilles Marini tells PEOPLE he does not want to become Dancing
’s next casualty.
“I am going to do everything in my power to keep dancing,” Marini says. “I will dance on Monday, no question.”
Marini was diagnosed with tendonitis
in his left shoulder and groin area on Feb. 27. and has been taking ibuprofen for the pain and inflammation.
“It’s like I have a knife in the groin area and when I move or lunge, it’s like it is turning a quarter turn,” Marini confessed.
The 33-year-old actor will perform the cha-cha with partner Cheryl Burke
’s season 8 premiere Monday, March 9.
“I will dance and if I see it’s a problem, I have a choice of getting injected with a cortisone shot and the risk of rupturing a tendon is minimal, but it’s there,” Marini says. “We’re going to try to do the first dance and take it from there.” --Monica Rizzo