In this post, we will discuss general features which you should look for when buying any kind of Salsa, Latin, Swing or Ballroom dance shoe.
FEATURES OF GOOD DANCE SHOES
Quality dance shoes are flexible, comfy, lightweight, made of and/or real suede leather, and have built in extra cushioning in the sole. They give your foot more freedom of movement than routine shoes while keeping the heel “locked” in place. They’ve leather/suede soles to give you just the right amount of slip-and-grip on the dance floor while allowing your foot to pivot freely (to avoid knee damage). In general, any leather-soled shoes are awesome and rubber-soled sneakers, hiking boot, etc. are “not good”. You can see, for example, a full review of Zumba Shoes on this page.
FINDING THE CORRECT FIT
Your dance shoes should feel like a glove to your foot. You do NOT need any wiggle room as they’ll extend a bit once you begin using them. This snug fit enables your foot to connect with the floor, providing you with more control of your move, balance, whirls and will reduce your fear of slipping and falling. You may wonder why you did not make the investment.
WHICH DESIGN SHOULD YOU BUY?
The type of dance shoe you buy mostly depends on the style of dancing you do. Gentlemen typically wear leather or suede shoes with a low heel for Swing, Ballroom or Salsa . For Latin Ballroom the heel has a tendency to be marginally higher measuring up to 1.5 inches.
For women, strappy sandal or an open toe heel is greatest for the Salsa and Latin dancing. This enables greater movement of the toes, which many dancers feel help with balance and creating a clean leg line. For Swing and Ballroom, a closed-toed dance shoe with a marginally lower heel is common. The vast collection of designs can make picking your first pair of dance shoes overwhelming. Below are some things to consider:
CHOOSING STRAPS FOR YOUR SHOES:
Traditional Ankle Strap: This is the standard around -the-ankle strap commonly provides the least number of foot security and used for most women’s dress shoes and sandals.
Excellent for newer dancers, this strap style anchors your foot to the arch of the shoe, providing a great number of support and firmness. In case you are prone to “roll” your ankle in heels with a conventional ankle strap, you will adore the security this cross-strap will supply you.
Heel sizes can be as low as 0.5″ or as high as 4″. For beginners, it is suggested to start with a 2.5″ heel height. The higher the heel, the more your weight is pushed onto the ball of the foot. More stability is provided by a lower, thicker heel and distributes the weight equally of the whole foot.
The thickness of heels change. Cuban heels are thickest heels and the lowest and disperse weight over more of the foot, providing comfort and more balance. The lanky stiletto heel is remarkably popular among Salsa dancers now. The flare heel, wider at the bottom and lanky in the middle, is another popular heel favored by many dancers.
FINDING THE RIGHT SIZE
Normally, your dance shoe size will be the same as your everyday shoe. If your foot is small, you should lower 1/2 a size. If your foot is larger, you should go up half a size from your regular street shoe. Remember, you need them to be snug, but not painful.
HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR DANCE SHOES
Shoe polish is great for leather to keep shoes looking clean. Mesh and polyester can be cleaned with water and soap. Suede soles can wear out quickly if worn on the street. It is best to wear leather soles on dance floor surfaces only (for example hard wood floors). We propose changing into dance shoes once arriving to your dance destination. New dance shoes haave a shoe bag for this reason.
The wire not only removes debris from the bottom, but additionally, it lifts the grain to make the suede like new again