This is the reason for my 'En Pointe' video series - to help educate dancers and teachers on all things pointe shoes. There's a lot of misinformation surrounding pointe shoes, and this poor guidance can end careers before they even start. My aim is to shed light on topics surrounding pointe shoes, to give dancers the information they need to make more educated and informed choices moving forward in their pointe journey.
I love pointe shoes. They are a beautiful show of craftsmanship and one of the core components that makes ballet the breathtaking art form that it is. It demonstrates a ballerina's poise and strength and is undoubtably one of the most challenging feats of human athletic performance. Pointe shoes can make or break a dancer, so it's an important thing to get right.
My Pointe Shoe History
Inspired by my own experience with pointe, I consider it a privilege and duty to offer advice and support to those beginning pointe for the first time. This is a crucial time in a dancer's career and I take particular care with first pointe shoe fittings. Fitting newbies can also be one of the most challenging to navigate, as these dancers are yet to learn the complexities of dancing en pointe.
Although I have fit dancer's further into their career and even those in professional companies, the first and second pairs of shoes are arguably the most important. This is when pointe technique is learned and developed. Getting the right shoe from the start will help a ballerina throughout the entirety of their pointe career and into adulthood (you'll thank me later when you don't develop bunions or joint pains!).
My time wearing pointe shoes as a dancer was... less than ideal. Unfortunately, my story is not a unique one. I was not properly educated on the anatomy of pointe shoes, what style may work better for my needs, what accessories I could use to prevent the development of bunions, and how to correctly care for my shoes. I was not educated and I'm still facing the consequences now.
After training in ballet full time and completing professional studies and qualifications, I have been a pointe shoe fitter for 3.5 years.
My pointe shoe fitting career commenced with Bloch, where I underwent multiple training sessions and examinations to be verified by the company to be a fitter. While working with Bloch, I fit pointe shoes from their large collection and gave guidance on shoes and training to dancers of all ages and stages. Since moving to Canada, I have been working with a local dance store fitting Bloch, Capezio and Freed.
psst! dancers and parents!
I have created a private Facebook group where I aim to assist dancers and parents on more specific pointe shoe questions.
Join Kisarhi En Pointe to read other dancer's experiences and seek help from peers and professionals.