Signs To Know When Your Pointe Shoes Are Dead

“Dead” in this case either means broken or no longer suitable for use. It’s pretty common parlance in the ballet community. When you suspect your pair of pointe is dead, you’ll need to order a new pair as soon as possible if you don’t have a replacement.

It can be extremely risky dancing with a dead pair of pointe. The point of the shoes is to protect your feet. A dead pair doesn’t provide much protection and can do more harm than good.

Here are 4 signs that your pointe shoes are dead and it’s time to consider a replacement.

1. The shank is broken

If the shank becomes too worn out or so soft that you’re able to feel the floor beneath your feet, then replace the shoes.

Check more: How long do pointe shoes last? When to replace?

2. The box and the wings soften

The toe box and the wings (the sides of the shoes near the front of your feet) have to be firm and hug your feet snugly. If they soften up so much to the point your feet start to sink into the shoes, it’s not a good sign.

old Pointe Shoes

3. You are able to feel the floor when you go en pointe

The toebox protects your toes from the shock and pressure of going en pointe.

While it’s still working, you shouldn’t be able to feel the floor when you stand on the tips of your toes. Once you do, the toebox material has begun to wear down.

It’s very unsafe to wear a pair of pointe shoes with worn-out toe boxes.

4. The shoes are ill-fitting

Pointe shoes must fit your feet perfectly. Never buy a pair that’s even half a size larger or smaller.

Besides being the top safety gear for ballet, keep in mind that pointe shoes are disposable items. They will wear out, and you’ll have to discard them eventually.

Unlike other dance forms, you don’t buy these shoes to keep for a long time. Buy a new pair if the shoes don’t fit or no longer fit you well.

Do not attempt to dance on a pair of ill-fitting shoes. Many problems can happen if you do, like chafing and increased risks of injuries.

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