Why do you need practice shoes?
Posted on March 23 2017
A dancer, no matter what level grows and develops their craft during practice. It's possibly the most important way a dancer can spend their time - and much more time is spent practicing than performing or dancing in front of an audience in general. For this reason, the shoes a dancer picks to practice in is an extremely important decision and one that should not be taken lightly.
There are several factors to look at when selecting a pair of practice shoes - your dance level, the type of floor you're dancing on, and how long you generally practice for. This article will tackle each of these concerns so that you are armed with all the information you need on why practice shoes are so important!
First to consider is your level of dance. In general, the more advanced a dancer, the higher the heel you'll want to wear for practice. Beginners should start out in either no heel, or a very low heel. Dance shoe heels are placed in slightly different places than regular street shoes, and therefore it takes some time to get used to the way they feel. The worst case is when a dancer wears too high of heels and then can't move properly in them and is prone to injury.
That being said, the amount of time you spend practicing should also be considered. Even professionals wear dance sneakers when practicing for very long periods of time, especially when learning a new routine or moves. They will then graduate to a higher heel so that they can dance as thought they will in a performance.
A dance sneaker is a great option for beginners. These are shoes that are designed for typical dance floors, but are extra supportive and provide just enough grip and slide so that you can easily move on the dance floor. These shoes are very flexible and comfortable to wear for long periods of time.
Finally, the floor your dancing on should also be taken into consideration. If it's particularly slippery, a dance sneaker might be the best option until you really find your footing and are feeling confident.
You should never wear your street shoes on the dance floor - for practice or performance. Street shoes are generally rubber on the soles and do not provide the particular kind of support required by dancers.
What's your preferred type of dance shoe for practice?