Ballroom Dance > Standard Shoes - court only?

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by IndyLady, Aug 9, 2017.

  1. IndyLady

    IndyLady Well-Known Member

    Are court shoes the only style that is appropriate for Standard (e.g. in a comp setting) for women, or are other styles acceptable as well (see link below for example)?

    I'm thinking about getting a new pair of shoes, and I tend to prefer ones that are the style of the link above (with the straps around the foot, and with a break between the heel/toe box). I currently have a pair of court shoes, but I don't like them as much, even though they have a strap over the top - they don't feel as secure. However, if court shoes are the expectation for Standard (vs. Smooth), I will look for a pair of those.

    FWIW, my internet searches, both on this forum and outside, have not been successful in helping me figure out the answer to this so if I've missed a past thread I'm happy to take a look at that.
  2. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Well-Known Member

    I want to say that having a 'split shoe' for standard competition is a no-no. While I don't know if there is an actual rule for it or not, but my suspicion would be that judges/people could wonder "why is she wearing smooth shoes?" or something to that effect. I can't recall ever seeing someone do standard in shoes like this either at a comp. I'm sure it's happened, but I think (especially at more advanced levels) for standard, it's court shoe. I've even heard somewhere that strapless is preferable, but I've had shoes come off mid-dance (LOL) so I just get ones with a strap regardless.
    IndyLady likes this.
  3. azntwice

    azntwice Member

    I would recommend getting a court shoe with a strap or, if you don't like the look of the strap, with a clear strap to keep your foot in the shoe. While theoretically I suppose you could dance standard with a smooth shoe, I think the lack of support around the middle of the foot would be a problem with certain figures that require you to dance on the inside edge or outside edge of the foot. Your foot could get pretty scraped up or you could lose your balance. There are some shoe manufacturers that make shoes with a strap that goes over and under the foot I believe, or you can always buy a longer strap to loop it over and under the foot.
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  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I would not wear a smooth shoe for standard...for a variety of reasons
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  5. limni299

    limni299 Member

    For court shoes with or without straps - I've only seen an interview with Lorraine Barry on Killick & Friends via DSI TV where she specifically touched on this topic (if you subscribe you'll be able to see this video). In her opinion, if a lady uses her feet properly there is no need for a strap of any sort running through the shoe to hold the foot in. She goes on to say she really hates it and is known to have cut the straps off her students' shoes in some of her lessons! Now, I don't know how many former champions hold that same view but take from this what you will.

    In my own personal experience because I began standard many many years ago, I've always had an "open" shoe for ballroom (straps were not an option then!) and have never had a shoe fall off during comp...
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  6. Sania

    Sania Well-Known Member

    My feet are very narrow at the heel and wide across the toe – I cannot even wear pumps in street shoes without walking out of them – so I have a strap on my standard shoes
    IndyLady likes this.
  7. IndyLady

    IndyLady Well-Known Member

    Thank you all for the replies... confirms what I had thought. I am similar to Sania, in that pumps w/o straps often slip along my heels when I walk, even if they fit snugly while standing still (i.e. it's not an issue of needing to go down a size). I'm at the very beginning of my standard journey, so I will likely get a court shoe with a strap and perhaps I will be able to graduate to strapless over time if I make sufficient improvements.
  8. JudeMorrigan

    JudeMorrigan Well-Known Member

    I don't think this applies to your specific situation, but I'll note that in my experience, you can get away with wearing smooth shoes in syllabus standard. At least, an old partner of mine only had smooth shoes and I never noticed it impacting our results. Of course, even there, I remember encouraging her to consider a pair of court shoes when it was time to replace her current pair.
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  9. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    I'd agree that for syllabus, wear whatever makes you most comfortable/fits your budget. By open at the latest, it's time for court shoes.

    I wear shoes with a strap, though it is part of shoe (not the IMHO awful clear plastic things). I have narrow feet with a high ability to point, and have been known to point myself out of footwear of all types. I say find what works for your feet... that's why there are different makers and models.

    Oh,and if my instructor or coach ever cut the straps off my shoes in a lesson, they'd be buying me a replacement pair and would no longer be my coach, world champion or not. Respect goes both ways.
    Sania, j_alexandra and IndyLady like this.
  10. Sania

    Sania Well-Known Member

    Totally concur! The need for straps can be a foot shape issue, not poor technique.

    I like the kind with the diagonal straps – I think they're quite pretty and very comfortable
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  11. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

    My favorite court shoe moment. Proves she's human. 3:02 or thereabouts.
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  12. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

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  13. flying_backwards

    flying_backwards Active Member

    As soon as I saw the straps question arise I knew it was only a matter of time before that video appeared!
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  14. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Well-Known Member

    BAHAHAH Kind of like Godwin's Law. LOL. "Katusha's Law" = any online discussion involving standard shoe straps invariably will lead to this video.
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  15. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

    Happy to oblige.
    Miss Silly likes this.

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