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Top 5 Pointe Shoes for Hard to Fit Feet

For dancers with hard-to-fit feet, finding the right pointe shoe can take a lot of searching.
For dancers with hard-to-fit feet, finding the right pointe shoe can take a lot of searching.
Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Not every dancer has feet that fit easily into most shoes. Any dancer with extremely low or high arches, or who tends to struggle to get over her box, has unique challenges finding shoes. The same goes for dancers who tend to go too far over their shoes. But, there’s hope out there. Many pointe shoe companies are coming out with new models that fill some of those needs, and some older models also offer extensive customization that can make a shoe work well for more challenging foot types. Here are five to try if you feel like you’ve already tried every shoe out there.

  • Freed Classic. They’re not a new option, but few shoes on the market can be this well adapted to an individual dancer’s needs. Every aspect of the shoe can be special ordered—from the vamp to the insole. And, you can specify an individual shoe maker who matches your preferences.
  • Gaynor.While these are controversial (some teachers feel that they help students “cheat”), they do offer multiple vamp options and box shapes, which work well for most feet. And, the material the shank is made out of doesn’t break down like conventional pasteboard does, so they last much longer.
  • Russian Pointe. Russian Pointe’s shoes are a good pick for dancers with strong feet. Models like the Entrada and Rubin help dancers with high arches to not go too far over their boxes. In addition, the stronger shanks on most models last longer than many other conventional shoes.
  • Suffolk Pointe Company. These shoes are made on a Freed-like last. They are often a good choice for dancers who want an easier roll-up to pointe. They also typically last longer than Freeds.
  • Fuzi.This small manufacturer makes a great pointe shoe for those with weaker feet. Its split sole makes rolling onto and off pointe easier. Try these if you have a hard time manipulating your shoes.

Do any of these shoes work for you? What’s your favorite pointe shoe?

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this review in any way.