Buy The Right Ballet Shoes

The ballet shoe is a very soft shoe designed specifically to protect the feet and enhance the technique of the dancer. When it comes to choosing which ones to buy, there’s plenty of choice. You will find a huge selection on the market from various brands such as Capezio and Bloch available from a large number of specialist dancewear retailers. Here are a few top tips to help you choose the right ones.

To ensure the best fit, the shoe should fit snugly on the foot without being too small. When you try them on, rise up and balance on the balls of your feet. Your toes should be fairly relaxed with enough space to move around a little. If they’re tightly crammed into the front of the shoe then you need to try on a larger pair. If you’re struggling to choose between two different sizes, it’s advisable to go for the larger pair rather than risk purchasing a pair of ballet shoes which are too small.

Ballet shoes are available in satin, canvas and leather. If you’re choosing your first pair, you may be tempted to choose satin as this is the most aesthetically pleasing of the three. However, this is best kept for special performances, festivals and auditions as it is by far the least hard wearing. The most expensive of the three is leather but it will pay you back in the long run as it is the hardest wearing. Canvas is a cheaper alternative which is relatively hard wearing but its worth knowing that it can sometimes catch and pull. On the other hand, it’s very easy to maintain as canvas ballet shoes can be simply thrown into the washing machine on a cool gentle wash.

The next thing to consider is the type of sole you wish to choose – full sole or split sole? Full sole ballet shoes are mainly worn by beginners as they force the foot to work harder to achieve pointe. Over time, this helps the muscles in the foot develop thus allowing the dancer to achieve the precision of control required by ballet dancing. Split soles, as their name suggests, have a break in between the ball of the foot and the heel to allow for maximum flexibility and allow the dancer to create a stronger pointe.

Finally, you need to check whether your ballet shoes include elastics which you will use to secure the shoes to your feet. Whilst these are occasionally pre-attached (usually on shoes designed for very young children), it’s more common for them to not be attached. This is so that you can sew them on in exactly the right place depending on the shape of your foot and the location of the arch.

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