Ouch, ouch, ouch! Pointe shoes can most defiantly hurt your toes. Once you feel toe pain in a rehearsal, it’s all you can think about. You can’t escape the pain until the “boots” come off.
It does get better as you get used to it. Your feet form callus’s and your nails start to be, “ok” with the pressure. You slowly build up stamina to make it through a 4, 6 or even 8 hour rehearsal and show day!
The lucky ballerinas, are those who don’t even wear toe pads and have no pain with their toes. Wow. That’s like a super power. I am so impressed.
I, unfortunately, am not one of those ballerinas. For me, it is my toe nails. Especially my big toe nail. Ouch.
When I was younger, just starting out in the corps de ballet, I could barely make it through a two hour rehearsal because of toe pain. I didn’t like wearing Ouch Pouch pads or any toe pads really, because I couldn’t feel the floor in the same way. I was willing to have pain, in order to dance better. That can only last so long though, even with a high pain tolerance. Luckily, these days, there are so many more options out there for ballerinas!
The first time I danced the lead in Etudes, I remember my feet screaming at me. The sylph section is almost all on pointe. So many bourrees. In my fifteen minute break, I would run upstairs, put ice on my feet and pray that they would fit back in to my shoes.
I couldn’t continue dancing with only tape and second skin. I never quite figured out cotton or paper towels. I do know some ballerinas that are quite happy with those as a solution though.
Luckily, I found a solution of my own. And I am so grateful that I have! PerfectFit Pointe Inserts. This was a game changer for me. Now, I can get through my longest of days without being in agony. I may still feel my toes after an 8 hour day but at least I don’t need an Advil in order to get the swelling down. (NOT healthy, NOT wise. DO NOT reach for the Advil!)
“The PerfectFit Pointe Shoe Inserts use a moldable impression material to adapt your foot to fit the inside of your shoe like a glove. By filling the voids within the box of the shoe, the inserts perfectly distribute your weight across your toes and forefoot when en pointe, which reduces or removes painful and damaging pressure points. ” -www.perfectfitpointe.com
When you order a set of inserts, you make them yourself, at home. They are completely customized for your foot, your needs and desires.
Another bonus, is that I no longer have to sit on the floor, between barre and center for ten minutes taping every, individual toe. I am much faster to get my shoes on and continue with my favorite part of class, center.
I can feel the floor, which is everything to me. I don’t like to feel that I am being lifted out of my shoes but rather truly, in the shoe. PerfectFit Inserts do this, while giving me greater stability and balance. Win, Win!
I fully recommend them. My everyday pain, has diminished. That is the biggest gift. To be able to do what I love, without sensitive toes. 🙂 Thank you PerfectFit!