Ballerinas and Their Pointe Shoes

Anyone who is familiar with Ballet knows about the difficult dance routines ballerinas do on their toes. In fact the word, “en pointe,” is French for “on the tips of the toes. “ It’s amazing how ballerinas can build up their strength and flexibility to perform those dances. I would think that their feet must go through many long nights of practice. It appears to me that properly fit shoes and well-kept feet are essential for a good performance. For this reason, I’ve looked into some facts future “en pointe” ballerinas might need to know about their pointe shoes.  I found a few helpful tips online at About.com:

1)     Make sure to get the perfect size when buying your first pointe shoes.  Pointe shoes that are too big or too small can cause injury.

2)     Pointe shoes also have no left or right, making them interchangeable. You want to make sure to wear them as you would regular shoes because they will eventually conform to your feet.

3)     Pointe shoes wear out easily due to the amount of pressure they endure. It’s important to notice when they start wearing out so you can perform with the needed stability.

4)     Let your shoes air out and dry after practice. Moisture from your feet will make the shoes more delicate, and they need to harden up before the next performance/practice.

It must be a very exciting day when a young ballerina gets her first pair on pointe shoes. If you are taking that step toward “en pointe” dancing in the future, hopefully these tips will come in handy. This site also mentioned pointe shoe brands you may want to consider: Capezio, Bloch, Gaynor Minden and Grishko. Remember our Ballet director, Maria Hirsch, is your best resource when it comes to finding what you need for ballet class. Are you ready to take your ballet dancing to the next level?  Visit our website www.ColumbusState.edu/Ballet  or call 706.507.8070 for registration information on future classes.

-Kindra Hunter

Vann, Korky. “Pointe Shoes.” About.com Shoes. Web. 29 Feb. 2012. <http://shoes.about.com/od/casualshoes2/qt/pointe_shoes.htm&gt;.

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