Ballroom Dance > shoes again: practice shoes

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by Kitty, Nov 11, 2005.

  1. Kitty

    Kitty New Member

    I would like to practice in something very comfortable and gentle to my feet. I'm used to practicing (standard) in competition shoes - supadance 1008 but thinking of getting practice shoes, minimum inch heel, maximum 2 inch heel. 1.5 would be perfect. I have very small feet and wear wide shoes. What brand would you recommend? or what kind?

    also, what do you do to make shoes more comfortable? Especially those that are teaching, I can't imagine how you would survive in heels all day long, every day.
    I've seen people use gel pads, doe anyone know where I could buy those?
  2. chachachacat

    chachachacat Well-Known Member

    I taught for many years in heels. Once I tried practice shoes, I've never gone back. 1 1/2 inch chunky heel, black lycra. I find them very comfortable for long periods of dancing.
  3. Kitty

    Kitty New Member

    what brand do you buy?
    are they suitable for wide feet? or are they adjustable?
  4. Twilight_Elena

    Twilight_Elena Well-Known Member

    The good things I've heard about the Romas suggest that they're a good practice shoe. Many DFers here say they're really comfortable for teaching and practicing.
    Other than that, I haven't practiced in a practice heel before, so I can't really say anything about them.

    Twilight Elena
  5. Ithink

    Ithink Active Member

    I understand the desire to find comfortable shoes to practice in, especially if you practice more than 2 hours at a time. I used to wear practice shoes to practice but found that the height difference it created between my partner and I (not to mention the different way the shoes made me dance then when I put on my comp shoes in competition) were an obstacle I wasn't willing to overcome just to practice in more comfortable shoes. Besides, I don't find the standard shoes that I have uncomfortable:)

    So, I guess I would try to see if I could find a way to make my comp shoes more comfortable for practice (like what you asking about gel inserts or whatnot). Or, like I do, practice in old, worn comp shoes that are practically molded to your feet already and wear new ones to compete in.

    I will say this: until I found the current shoes I have, which I find very comfortable, I'd be right there with you, looking for practice shoes:)
  6. standardgirl

    standardgirl New Member

    You can get gel pad at that dance shoe store in Manhattan (Is it call Worldtone?). Or I get gel pad online at some figure skating websites. If you just do a googla search, you should be able to find it.

    For practice shoes, I wear the exact same style as my competition shoes except in leather rather than satin, and also in 1.5 or 2 in heel instead of 2.5.
  7. lynn

    lynn New Member

    Kitty, i would wear the same brand as your comp shoes. I have small but wide feet too and i've tried several brands and i found freed and supadance fit me best.

    My practice shoes is 1.5 inches chunky heel but honestly, it feels very different than standard shoes - so, maybe something to think about.
  8. chachachacat

    chachachacat Well-Known Member

    Supadance Heather. I don't have wide feet, so I don't know about that. The fact that they tie makes them more comfy.
  9. skwiggy

    skwiggy Well-Known Member

    I wear Supadance practice shoes, and I love them. Ithink and lynn have a point about them feeling very different to dance in than court shoes. I just make sure to practice in my court shoes for at least 2-3 full practices before a competition. Then the transition is virtually painless, and I get to keep my feet a bit healthier overall.
  10. Kitty

    Kitty New Member

    sounds like a plan. I know about court shoes feeling differently. I have been practicing in court shoes for a year. Almost every day. I know that even different brands of standard showes feel totally different so it is important to practice in comp shoes for few practices at l.east before each comp. But foot health is an issue for me right now, so I think switching to practice/teaching shoes is the only option I have...
  11. skwiggy

    skwiggy Well-Known Member

    Oh, and by the way, my practice shoes are the chunky 1.5" heels.

    As far as inserts, I would say that depends on how bad your foot problems are. I personally much prefer dancing without inserts. With them I can't really feel the floor. But again, foot health is paramount. You only get one pair of feet, so making sure you don't damage them is important.

    As far as which inserts to use, a friend of mine with VERY bad foot problems uses mouse pads. She has tried every fancy foot insert on the market, and she says none are as good, nor nearly as affordable as mouse pads. She buys the really thick cushy kind, and cuts them to the shape of her shoe. So that might be worth a try.
    WildE likes this.
  12. Twilight_Elena

    Twilight_Elena Well-Known Member

    :shock: Mouse pads! now there's an idea I think none of us has tried before! :idea:

    Twilight Elena
  13. DancingJools

    DancingJools Member

    Using training shoes for everyday practice then switching to regular dance shoes a week or two before a comp is what I do, also. You really do have one pair of feet, so protect them as much as you can.
    I have wide feet. I found the Freed Roma to be too narrow. Uncomfortable, really. Supadance is a lot more comfortable, and that's for both styles, the ones with the chunky heel, and the one with the slightly higher, more tapered heel.
    When I put inserts in practice shoes, I use the regular Dr. Scholl's brand. They are cushy, but not too bulky to cramp your feet inside the shoe, and you can still feel the floor with them.
    BTW, Supadance also makes their practice shoes in Wide fittings, and the dancestore in the Boston area (BackBay) often carries these, so may be other stores do to. If not, they can be special ordered, from a store or online (including the Supadance website).
    WildE likes this.
  14. swan

    swan Member

    I absolutely swear by Supadance's 1026. That's the lace up coaching shoes. I just practice in it. 1 or 2 weeks before the comp, then I'll switch to my high heel pumps. I like the flared heel ones. It won't make my balance too differently from my practice shoes (although some difference, of course). Lately, I think I've finally found a pair I like (DanSport by International, the 'cheaper' model :))
  15. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Supa 1025 or Int'l Classic Heather. Although there appear to be other brands that have similar shoes. Gives you a slightly lower heel than your comp shoes, but is a smaller heel than the cuban heel, making transition back to your comp shoes not as big a deal as from a cuban heel.
    WildE likes this.
  16. skwiggy

    skwiggy Well-Known Member

    I would be careful of the imitations on these styles. Some of the other brands that I've seen are poorly constructed. The heels appear downright unsafe. I'd stick to the real deal on these styles.
  17. gracie

    gracie Active Member

    gel pads

    I bought some gel pads from the catalogue Footsmart. They have a web site as well. These are made into a fabric like stocking material that just covers the forefoot and seem to be very durable. I am washing them on the delicates cycle of my washer and just air drying. I wear them with leather Supadance ladies practice shoe, as well as my 2.5 in. latins and court shoe and in conjuction with another orthotic that doesn't have enough metatarsal support. I have metatarsalgia in both feet due to fat atrophy unfortunately. I am hoping to compete this year if my feet can stand up to it. Hope this helps!
  18. chachachacat

    chachachacat Well-Known Member

    Welcome to DF, Gracie!:D
  19. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Metatarsalgia? I'm almost scared to ask, but what's that?

    And, by the way, welcome to the forums. :)

    @cccc: Hope you had a beautiful birthday. :)
  20. chachachacat

    chachachacat Well-Known Member

    I had a wonderful birthday, thank you!:banana:
    And I'm still having fun and leftovers and more presents today!

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