High Quality Dance apparel and shoes with Friendly Knowledgeable Service, Great Selection, Great Fit
The staff has completed several pointe shoe
fitting seminars with major dance brands like Gaynor Minden, Bloch, Capezio, Grishko and Suffolk and is
always working to improve and learn more. We are more than happy to provide as many
opions as we can though, and take pride in our ability to work as a team to
ensure your best fit.
years we have fit pointe shoes on thousands of dancers, in nearly every brand
and model available. Therefore, we can help if you have concerns or questions
about how to choose and fit the brand, size, or style of shoe that is right for
you, but we CANNOT accurately fit pointe shoes over the phone. Please, if you
are buying your first pair of pointe shoes, or you are changing size, brand, or
model and are unsure of what you need, have a professional personally fit you.
We can offer advice and guidance, but the wrong pointe shoe can cause permanent
damage to your feet. If you are able to come to our store at 30 West Lancaster
Ave, Paoli, PA 19301, please call us at (610) 251-2344 to make an appointment.
If you are unable to visit us in the store, please call us, we will be happy to
help pointe you in the right direction!
Dancing en pointe is a very elegant yet athletic talent and requires grace and
strength. To compliment the form of this dance discipline, the pointe shoe is
regarded as an extension of the foot and a continuation of the leg line.
However, regardless of a dancer's technical ability, a pointe shoe must fit
properly in order to provide the support required to dance en pointe.
shoes cannot be purchased to grow into. Due to the shorter wearing time,
shorter life, and frequent replacement of pointe shoes, the snug fit does not
endanger healthy growing young feet.
All pointe shoes are sized differently, some are based on street shoe size and
width, some are sized larger, some smaller. Even different models by the same
manufacturer may have different sizing standards. There are dozens of size
conversion charts available, some more accurate than others.
of the feet do not complete their final hardening and joining until a dancer is
in her early twenties. It is important not to impair their future growth
pattern for obvious reasons. Since working en Pointe puts the foot under
considerable stress, fitting shoes “to grow into” should always be avoided. The
shoe must fit snugly to avoid callouses, bruises and bunions yet give maximum
support to prevent permanent bone damage. Shoes that are too large or too wide
make it impossible to achieve proper support and balance and will result in
shoe fitting is not an exact science since the majority of pointe shoes are
handmade with no two pairs being identical. It involves a great deal of trial
and error with the dancer needing to be patient and relying on the expertise of
the fitter to find the correct shoe. During the fitting, various shoes will be
tried. The shoe must fit like a glove providing the necessary support to stop
the foot from buckling. Please listen carefully to the fitter and allow them to
answer any questions as fully as possible.
PREPARING SHOES FOR WEAR
majority of pointe shoes are still made by what is known as the turnshoe
method, i.e. inside out. The block is constructed from natural fibers and
paste, which will break down and mold to the foot giving a shock absorbing
effect. There is no obvious left or right shoe since this would distort the
dancers balance. However, the dancer should mark each shoe so they can
distinguish between them. Alternating the shoes can often increase the lifespan
but if the feet are considerably different this may not be possible. A certain
amount of experimentation will be needed. To attach ribbons, fold the back seam
of the shoe against the sole and towards the front. The ribbons are then placed
inside the shoe in the angles made by folding the heel forward. The raw edges
should face the lining of the shoe. A light pencil mark can be drawn as a
sewing guide. The ribbons are sewn forward as this allows them to lay flat on
BREAKING IN SHOES
experienced dancers will often feel the need to “break-in” a new pair of pointe
shoes. They are looking to maintain sufficient rigidity in the shoe to ensure
support yet have the flexibility to allow fluent movement. While the shoes can
be softened by gently molding them in the hands, the most sensible method is to
walk around in them and rise from quarter, to demi, to three-quarter pointe,
allowing the shoes to mold to the feet. This should be repeated over time.
However, if you are new en pointe then please only wear your shoes when you are
being supervised by your teacher. Finally, we would not advise the extreme
tactics used by some dancers to soften shoes. This will only reduce the
lifespan of the shoe and can easily break the backs.
CARING FOR SHOES
wear, shoes should be put somewhere warm and dry to air. The block should be
packed tightly with tissue paper wrapped in plastic. This will ensure it does
not lose its shape and that the shoe dries out through the surface and does not
simply remain damp inside. If the shoes are not allowed time to dry between
classes then their lifespan will be considerably reduced. If you are to get the
most from your shoes then they must be well cared for. Please ensure the steps
above are taken. If you have more than one pair of pointes, alternate them
between classes as it can sometimes requires up to three days for a shoe to
properly dry out.
INCORRECTLY FITTING SHOES
dancer will find that the feet will need a certain amount of time to harden to
working en pointe. However, many common problems can be avoided by ensuring the
correct shoes are being worn at all times. If shoes are too wide, too short,
too long or too narrow, problems will result. The common signs are blisters,
corns, bunions and soreness around the heel and Achilles tendon. If this is not
rectified quickly then it could cut short a dancers career as well as causing
long-term damage. The simple answer is to have your shoes checked regularly by
an experienced fitter.