If this is your first pair of pointe shoes, going into a  dance store or studio is often the best way to make sure you get the proper fit and the right shoes for your needs. Here are some guidelines that will help you find the right shoe:

  1. Toes should lie flat in the shoe (they shouldn't overlap)
  2. Just the big toe should touch the top of the box when you stand.  If it doesn’t touch, the shoe is to long, if all your toes touch the box, the shoe is too short. (If all toes slide down and touch only when en pointe, the shoe is too big.)
  3. The shoe should have strong shank.  The shank of the shoe will assist in supporting dancing en pointe, especially if you have a very flexible arch.
  4. If you can slip a finger between your foot and the drawstring, the shoe is too wide.
  5. Flex your foot.  If your heel is pinched painfully, the shoe is too tight.
Brandt R Gibson, DPM
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Podiatrist, Neuropathy Doctor, Father of 11 and Founder of Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute