Pointe Shoes - Lori Barwick www.Morguefile.com.
A lot of Ballet moves are performed on the 'toes' so this type of footwear have a reinforced toe cap. The 'shank' is a piece of firm material which makes the sole of the shoe stiff, which in turn provides support for the arch of the foot.
The outside of the shoe is covered with fabric, normally in a shade of pink, worn mostly by women. This fabric is often satin but you can get them made of canvas.
The sole of the shoe is commonly made from a single piece of leather which is stuck on and made stronger by stitching along the edges.
It is important that the look of the shoe is pleasing to the eye and has an elegant appearance.You can buy these shoes with either a scraped sole, which would give extra traction, or buffed soles with a smooth surface for reduced traction.
Very often, dancers will break in new shoes, by either wearing them until there is no discomfort. Hitting them with hard objects, or against hard surfaces, or making the toe boxes wet, then wearing them.
Sometimes, even after the shoe has been worn in there might still be some discomfort, so the dancer will wear 'toe pads' - fabric covered gel pads - which cushions the toe to make them more comfortable.
The shoes has two ribbons of fabric and an elastic band which is used to secure it to the foot.
It's important to make sure your footwear fits you properly.
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