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The Perfect Pointe Book manual, a dancer's guide to pointe shoe sizing to progress towards dancing in pointe ballet shoes.
Once you have done enough ballet class beginners work to need to buy pointe shoes, you need to understand pointe shoe sizing.
The variety of shapes, styles and stiffness of ballet toe shoes is almost overwhelming. Although, as you will find out, all of that variety may not be available in your local dance wear stores. Here are some ballet tips to help you research ballet pointe shoes, before you get to sizing and finding exactly the right fit.
Your first pointe shoe sizing will take a lot of time, assuming your area dance wear store has a lot of choices. First, call the stores closest to you and ask what brands they sell. You need to get an idea of your options.
Then, go on the internet and search pointe shoe brands. Get on the main site for the brands, and look for a "sizing" chart, which will often be a pdf file.
You can download them, and look over the widths, lengths and box types (tapered, square, etc.), and strength of the shanks.
If you do not know your foot type, stand on a piece of paper and draw an outline of your foot. This is something you can take with you to your first ballet toe shoe fitting.
Even though your are not going to make any decisions at this time, you will see the wide array of possibilities in fitting your first pointe shoes.
You probably already know whether you have more flexible, stiffer, or hyper-mobile ankle joints. This determines the type of shank (inner sole support) you will need.
The length of toes you have will also determine what height of vamp you will require. And if your heel is narrower than the rest of your foot.
You will be challenged with the coordination of information about pointe shoes, brands, sizing, and your own foot type. But isn't this exciting!
To learn all you can, get The Perfect Pointe Book so you can improve your ballet technique.