There are a few things that can ruin a perfect pair of ballroom dance shoes. In our industry we don’t have much equipment, we actually just have two things that make us dancers: our feet and our shoes. Yes, we also have pounds of hair gel and glitter but we all know that you can have perfect hair and an amazing dress but that doesn’t make you a great dancer. Having bad shoes though… that can hinder any professional as nothing can disguise a dancer with painful blisters. Showtime Dance Shoes is committed to helping you not only find your perfect shoe but also making them last as long as possible. We have some tips on how to do so. See our blog post on how to cure Stinky Dance Shoes!
1) Finding the right fit for practice and performances.
Some dancers have wide feet, some narrow, some have weak ankles, and others need a lower heel. All of these things matter and we have practice shoes as well as competition shoes for any foot type. Getting a good practice shoe is probably more important than the performance shoes because 1) you can keep the competition shoes in better condition and 2) you can keep your feet more comfortable for hours and hours of practice. See all practice styles here.
2) Cleaning your suede soles with a sole brush
This is a huge recommendation for anyone with shoes that have a suede sole. Make your shoes last and brush the soles! Brush the suede of your shoes after every practice session, social dance, or competition, especially if the floor isn’t clean. Without brushing your shoes, dirt will work its way into the shoe and make it wear out more quickly. This can also be hazardous because shoes get slippery when they aren’t clean. Shop Sole Brush.
3) Shoe Disinfectant & Deodorizer
Far too often people worry about the outside of their shoes. But sometimes what is on the inside really does count, especially if the inside smells like rotten eggs. Using a simple deodorizer and disinfectant can get rid of any embarrassing order and also kill bacteria where mold will likely grow.
4) Lincoln E-Z Suede Cleaner
We have seen people try to wash their shoes with detergent, dawn, and many other products and it results in them buying a new pair of shoes. If you use a proper suede cleaner you can bring out the dirt without worrying about staining or permanently damaging the suede.
5) Heel Savers
Heel saver prolong the life of your heel tips. Many dancers also find they like the additional grip. We understand you have to be in your shoes in order to wear them in, but don’t destroy the heel in the process. Heel savers are the cheapest way to keep your shoes in top shape. Shop Now.
Due to the social media wave, a first dance can now be seen by thousands who were not at the wedding or for that matter, don’t even know the couple. Some couples are quite uninspired by the idea, while others are purely motivated by this, so they rush to their ballroom dance class and prep for the big dance. With that being said, first dances are now extravagant displays of entertainment, even groomsmen, and guests are getting on the choreography train. It is almost like a concert… or… I KNOW, a ballroom dance competition! Yes, brides and grooms are looking more and more like ballroom competitors on their big day and we are loving it because the passion for dance is NOT dead.
Ballroom dance is a fabulous introduction to marriage, helping the couple work towards a common goal, communicating, and having fun. It also provides a time for the couple to escape the stress of wedding planning while getting their groove on. With that being said, some couples forget to look natural, they forget to have fun, and they are so concentrated on their dance moves that they look like programmed machines rather than two people celebrating a lifetime of happiness.
So where is the balance? How do we teach our couples to look less stressed during their dance? Well, we should probably tell them that the best choreography comes from within our cores and not in our arms and legs, when we dance with a partner we need to mirror their core movements and don’t forget eye contact. That is how we get chemistry, that is how we create a beautiful dance unique to the couple. Do not let them worry so much about their feet, also minimize dips and twirls if it’s a slow song. Allow them to find their feet and try not to force their every step. Yes, we may break a few “technical” rules but that is exactly what dance is suppose to do. Some of these first dances are so awkward it is hard to watch so lets give them a little wiggle room and force the important things like chemistry, core movements, and eye contact. Dance is FUN, especially for newlyweds!
Also remind the bride that she may need to change shoes before stepping (or slipping*) on the dance floor. There are a ton of amazing shoes out there that are great to dance in. We would recommend Benjamin Adams shoes with the mid heel and possibly some straps! Benjamin Adams is a high end bridal shoe designer and has been recognized by the RBA as the best shoe designer of 2014. We have picked some favorites for you but the list goes on. (Benjamin Adams Styles: Catherine, Lawrence, Astor, Blake, Preston, Mia)
Now some people want extra comfort while they practice their dance and even may continue dancing after the wedding. This is when we would recommend the bride investing in a pair of ballroom dance shoes. www.showtimedanceshoes.com has all heel heights, wide and narrow fits as well as split soles and practice shoes. Speaking to their customer service department about fitting options is highly recommended prior to ordering your shoes!