As the name suggests, ballerina shoes are mainly used for the art of ballet dancing. They go by a few other names including ballet slippers. Most ballerina shoes on the market are made from specific materials such as canvas, leather as well as satin. In the past, these shoes were always heeled but it wasn't until the eighteen fifties that we saw the emergence of a totally new non-heeled variety that offered better flexibility. This new version took the ballet world by storm and has since been standard footwear for all ballet dancers. There are two traits that all ballerina shoes have. Firstly, they have very thin soles. Secondly, they must be flexible enough to facilitate a wide range of foot movements. Leather, satin and canvas have their own advantages and disadvantages but their use is dependent on scale of the performance as well as the skill level of the ballet dancer.
Leather ballet slippers are the most commonly worn varieties by beginners. They are not as expensive as canvas or satin but they are very durable. For advanced footwork, dancers usually utilize canvas as they are suited to the higher rates of wear that comes with such intricate footwork. In the past, certain colors were only used by specific genders. Pink was mostly used by the fairer sex while white was used by male dancers. Needless to say, things have changed today. There are also two basic types of ballerina shoes used. Soft ballet slippers are the most common form of ballet shoes. Pointe shoes are required for advanced dancers that are required to work through pointwork dancing routines. Pointe shoes allow standing on the tips of the toe much easier compared to every other variety on the market.
You will find that most pointe shoes are worn by women as they have the smaller feet necessary for pointwork. Large feet can make such techniques rather difficult. These types of shoes are almost always custom made as they need to fit perfectly. The difference between soft and pointe shoes have to do with the front of the shoe. Pointe shoes have a stiff area at the toes that is shaped like a box. This design makes it easier on the toes in the long run. It is an important feature for all forms of pointework. In both varieties, they need to fit well while retaining good amounts of flexibility. If you are a beginner looking for a good pair, stick with leather ballerina shoes. They have just the right amounts of flexibility and they are the most durable type on the market.
While canvas is commonly used for intricate footwork, they tend to wear out faster than leather. They cost more too. Finally, satin shoes are only used for grand shows and presentations. Among the three, satin varieties have the shortest lifespan. They are usually attached to the foot via a type of elastic band. This band normally runs over the arch of the dancer's foot. Across the world, casual versions are worn by many women. In the United Kingdom, they are known as ballerina pumps and are comfortable and stylish footwear for casual occasions.
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