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Why Proper Dance Shoes Are Essential for Dance Professionals and Beginners

Why Proper Dance Shoes Are Essential for Dance Professionals and Beginners

Investing in proper shoes are as vital to a dance performance as the outfit for dancers. It really doesn’t matter whether you are a professional or beginner; proper dance shoes are mandatory, not just for ease of movement but also safety.

Different dance styles have different footwear requirements. While all shoes need to provide good grip and comfort, adaptability to the flooring also plays an important role. Too much grip, especially on sticky spots, can lead to awkward ankle twists and turns as much as loose grip does. You need to be able to turn, stop and spin at high speeds without losing your balance. Shoes must be fastened properly, leaving no room for the foot to slide about inside. For men or Scottish Highland Dancers, shoelaces must be secured tightly.

Caring for Dance Shoes

Aftercare is just as important so that a good pair of dancing shoes lasts long. Good dancing shoes can cost anywhere between $80 to $200 so caring for them is vital to get the best out them. There are a few basic rules to keep them in good condition:

Do not keep the shoes in a plastic or non-breathable bag.
Do not store them in a damp environment.
Keep them free of dust and debris.
Consider suede tip heel protectors to prevent wear and tear.
Polish leather shoes with a silicon-based oil to prevent cracks while dancing.
Use a wire shoe brush to rough up a smooth sole
Don’t wear your dance shoes on the streets.

What are the Different Types of Dance Shoes?

Every dance comes with its own requirements. The biggest difference between regular shoes and dance shoes is that all dance shoes have a metal shank in the arch for support. They are lightweight and flexible. The two main types for western dancing are Ballroom and Latin. Highland Dance shoes are typical for the popular Scottish folk dance.

Latin Shoes: Latin dance has several energetic varieties from Tango, Salsa, Cha Cha Cha, and Rumba to Paso Doble and Jive. Latin shoes for both men and women require high heels and raised arches. These support toe leads and hip movement. Men’s Latin shoes have a lightweight Cuban heel to boost height and flexibility.

Women’s Latin shoes are usually open-toed and more “strappy” but come with a buckle fastener to keep the foot in place. Beginners can wear moderately high heels but it is important for the shoes to fit snugly for comfort for extended periods of time. Looking for the right supplier is important to help make changes in the fit if required. The varieties available online may be cheaper but do not necessarily fit snugly or provide the highest quality.

Ballroom Shoes: Men’s Ballroom shoes have heels that are slightly lower than Latin dance shoes. They are typically black lace-up Oxfords. Some have a flat heel for standard dances.

Women’s Ballroom heels come in a variety of styles to suit different dance forms: Swing, Cha Cha, Foxtrot, Waltz, etc. Designs can range from pumps and sandals to open and close-toed with heels ranging from 1 to 3 inches. Slim heels make turns easier. Flared heels work better for Latin dances to provide stable support. Make sure you buy shoes that do not give you blisters.

Highlander Shoes: Another popular form of folk dance is the Scottish Highland dance that requires ultra-soft leather shoes. They need to be cut close to the foot and shaped to enhance footwork. A split-padded insole is fitted inside the shoe to provide comfort, protection and flexibility.


Visit Tartantown Ltd. for High-Quality Highland Dance Shoes, Coquitlam, BC.

Tartantown Ltd. has been bringing authentic, premium Highland dance shoes imported from Scotland to Canada for decades. Check out the wide variety of styles on our website. We also offer other items in the inventory including the best dance shoes from other suppliers for beginners, championship level, individual dancers as well as pipers and drummers of the general Scottish community. In addition, we have a large selection of traditional Scottish clothing items, attractive accessories and other novelties for special occasions and events for all ages. Visit our website to see the ones that fit your dance needs best.