Dancing in sneakers

toothlesstiger

Well-Known Member
#1
Perhaps my search of DF was not comprehensive enough, but...
When I watch WCS J&J competitions, it seems many, if not most of the men are wearing sneakers, and I mean Converse-style, canvas upper with a rubber toe, not dance sneakers. I would have thought the rubber sole is too sticky for turning. Have they modified the soles?
 

Larinda McRaven

Site Moderator
Staff member
#2
I often dance in sneakers, socially, and on a few occasions have taught in them, because they are more comfortable on my little piggy toe that is having problems at the moment. After awhile you learn to apply pressure differently, and you learn to move your center of weight differently.

I mean after all, when people complain that the floor is too fast, or they put oil on their shoes, what do we tell them? We say, it is not the floors fault, it is not you shoes fault. Get your center over your foot and you won't slide. So if you WANT to slide, instead of stick, keep your center away from your foot.

My knees still are tired at the end of the day wearing sneakers, but my little piggy toe is able to heal faster this way.
 

toothlesstiger

Well-Known Member
#3
Thanks, although I don't think that means I'm going to be able to do that. :) I'm a big guy with relatively small feet, so no matter how you cut it, coefficient of friction works against me.
 

Mr 4 styles

Well-Known Member
#4
Thanks, although I don't think that means I'm going to be able to do that. :) I'm a big guy with relatively small feet, so no matter how you cut it, coefficient of friction works against me.

ditto its a little better with jazz sneakers tho
 

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#5
There are some older threads about this, but it's been several years since they were written, IIRC, AND the threads may not be long and/or comprehensive enough to warrant in depth searching.


IIRC, a lot of swing dancers tape the soles of their sneakers. Duct tape, I think. I'll try the search function, but I doubt I'll find anything since I have only the vaguest notion of what I'm looking for.
 

toothlesstiger

Well-Known Member
#8
Thanks, pyg, but I was a aware of all the possibilities mentioned in the threads you linked. It seemed really unlikely to me that professional dancers would use a hack like tape on sneakers on a regular basis. Opendoor's post indicates a more likely answer to my question.

I've got a WCS workshop I'm going to in February, maybe I'll ask the teacher if no other answers come up here.
 
#12
Some of us also suede or leather the soles of sneakers. (It's quite easy, especially with a pair of shoes that doesn't have a lot of rubber pieces that stick out. If so, some people will get a sander and sand them down. If not, all you need is some leather/suede, place the shoe on it, draw the outline, cut it out, then glue on with Shoe Goo. Let dry thoroughly (at least a few days), and voila. And don't use super glue or something of that ilk. Really, the Shoe Goo is key.)

Also, you would be surprised at how many serious dancers do actually like the duct tape solution. (I danced in a pair of converse-ish sneaker mules with duct tape on the bottom for years at events where I knew the floor would be a problem with suede.)
 

sma

New Member
#13
Perhaps my search of DF was not comprehensive enough, but...
When I watch WCS J&J competitions, it seems many, if not most of the men are wearing sneakers, and I mean Converse-style, canvas upper with a rubber toe, not dance sneakers. I would have thought the rubber sole is too sticky for turning. Have they modified the soles?
 

sma

New Member
#14
A suggestion that some might want to try...if you have shoes you would like to use...such as sneakers or special flats etc. this will work on all. I buy the small round flat felt stick on tips that you normally use to put on the leg tips of furniture that keep them from scuffing of hardwood floors. They are inexpensive and a card or two will fit easily in your dance shoe bag. Just stick them on the soles and heels and you will be able to dance on tile or floors or even worn cement...Just be careful to try out at home , might make floor too slick for you, but if you can adjust...makes dancing very smooth and spins and turns effortless.
 

Spitfire

Well-Known Member
#16
Often danced in sneakers and have done Ok with them. Generally this was at the WCS dances where the atmosphere is most casual. For ballroom I would either wear dress shoes or boots, but decided to try dance shoes and am now quite happy with them for both ballroom and swing.
 

Joe

Well-Known Member
#17
Thanks, although I don't think that means I'm going to be able to do that. :) I'm a big guy with relatively small feet, so no matter how you cut it, coefficient of friction works against me.
Friction force doesn't vary with surface area, so the size of your feet shouldn't affect the force on your soles.
 

Mr 4 styles

Well-Known Member
#19
Friction force doesn't vary with surface area, so the size of your feet shouldn't affect the force on your soles.
I'm a big guy with relatively small feet, so no matter how you cut it, coefficient of friction works against me.
i think he means the shear force required to break contact with the surface this does vary by mass and area of contact:cool: and is felt as "strain"

nerd alert :)
i resemble that remark as wello_O
 
#20
I have never tried dance shoes so I can't really compare. The places I dance are very social and casual so most people wear sneakers. I also prefer very fast songs so it seems like I am working out more than dancing at times. For me sneakers are a perfect choice as long as they are non-marking.
 

Dance Ads