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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Frozen toes


dianec

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One of the many reasons I hate the London winter is that my toes never seem to defrost. Sometimes I have no feeling in them at all right the way through a class, no matter how much I try to move them or keep the ankle warmers on all the way through. The studio on Monday morning is particularly icy after the weekend - the heat's only been on for at most half an hour by the time we get in. Today I was wondering whether the kind of hand-warmers you can buy in outdoor shops - shake them up and they generate heat - would be a good idea, just to put under my toes before class. Does anybody have any other suggestions?

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My toes are cold all year long because of low blood pressure and poor circulation. I just wear a pair of short socks under my tights. They show a little bit, but at least I can point my feet. You may need to wear a larger shoe size.

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You could buy one of these little foot rollers and warm up your feet before class :grinning:

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Have you tried those self-heating pads? You can purchase them and put them in your shoes an hour or so before class so you feet are warm going in...at which point, you can comfortably warm them up muscularly with stretching and other exercises.

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Guest plain-dancer

My feet are always cold too. Low-blood pressure.

 

I just keep my feet jiggling at all times and I wear a big thick pair of socks over my shoes while I am flexing and pointing and tendu-ing before class starts. I try to think of this bit as "waking my feet up" instead of "warming my feet up". They will never feel toasty but by the time I take the big socks off to start class they at least feel movable instead of like ice-blocks. :grinning:

 

I'd never thought of trying those hand-warmers in my shoes. :( If you try that you'll have to tell me how it goes.

 

You can also cut the feet off of old tights and wear them over your regular tights in several layers for warmth without much extra bulk.

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I was more thinking...handwarmer heating pads in your regular shoes/boots sometime before your class. Which would give your feet/toes time to warm from the outside in...then, once you get in and start limbering up and stretching...your warmer body parts will have a better chance of warming from the inside out.

 

In high school color guard, we used to put them in our marching shoes (which were thin white leather with zero padding)...it helped when the only other defense against the weather was a white spandex bodysuit (bbrrrrrr....I can still remember the cold and freezing rain in the mountains of Maryland).

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I wear warm socks during barre, and put on my shoes for centre. I have seen pro dancers wear down booties or slipper sox. I don't wear my shoes under the sox since they get moist from the sweat.

 

May I suggest you do some slow (VERY SLOW) relevers at the barre before class to warm up your feet. Slow tendus should warm up the toes too. Using your muscles will warm them up quicker than heating pads and warmups.

 

Mike

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Discount Dance and I imagine other places too sell down booties; maybe you could wear those just for plies to let your feet warm up. That is warmest foot apparel that I have seen. Also I wear socks over my ballet slippers if it is cold during barre until I warm up, but it doesn't get as cold in MS, USA, as it does in London, UK!

 

 

 

Here is their description from discountdance.com (click shoes, then loungewear):

 

Down Booties

54203 by Sierra Designs

 

These comfortable down booties by Sierra Designs are the latest trend among professional level dancers. Highly insulated with 650-fill goose down....

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I live in a cold, damp place and I have solved Frozen Toes by wearing furry slippers with hard soles to and from class. I'm even considering Uggs, even though I'm not enamoured of the look. My feet, indeed all of me, gets cold easily.

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Well, if your feet are cold because you aren’t getting enough blood to them, the obvious answer is to get your blood moving. It isn’t difficult—run, climb some stairs, walk really really fast, jump, whatever raises your heart and breathing rates will result in your blood circulating faster and heat being generated by your body. Yes, you can wear 10 pairs of socks, use electric devices and try to create heat externally, but creating heat internally is, I believe, much more effective, and you get the free benefit of improving your cardiovascular fitness.

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My sympathies—I lived in the UK for a year as a child, and I don't think I ever got warm in my ballet classes there. Maybe you should just make sure you toes are as warm as possible when you get there. Rub and massage them, and even stick them under some warm running water, until you feel them, and then try to keep moving. Good luck!

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I suffer from the same problem, my feet are constantly cold from when i get out of bed untill i go to bed at night, regardless of how much exercise i have done.

 

My teacher really dislikes legwarmers so i take them off after barre but my toes are still really numb.

I suppose i have very bad circulation, i cool down very quickly after exercise :lol:

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My method is to have convertible tights, remove the front bit from the foot and massage the feet in your warm hands (you'll need gloves if the hands aren't warm either!) and also, wear a hat outside (I'm not joking: If you are warm through the head, it generates warmth to the feet).

Don't want to advertise if I'm not allowed to, but on this occasion I have to (I used to live in Edinburgh, so know about cold :lol: ): I just bought a 'North face' jacket (with fleece inside) and it's the best purchase I've done in years (retailers: Blacks, Tiso)... It's warm and yes, it's expensive, but I expect I'll use it for many years to come. Just like the weather adverts says: "bring it on"...

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I recommend Ugg boots before class. I have a pair and my cronically cold feet are WARM!

 

When I'm at the studio and during the first or second exercise at the barre, I wear fleece booties (available from Discount Dance). They are probably not as warm as the goose down booties, but you can actually do simple barre exercise wearing them.

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That is a good suggestion, but, your not being female makes it difficult for you to understand. Men, on the whole have a higher core temperature and do not chill as easily.

 

Us girls aren't so fortunate.

 

Physical warming up (tendus as you suggested) is great to do...however when your feet are so cold it hurts to actually push a toe across the floor, something more needs to be done.

 

Something can definitely be said for warming the body by external influences...otherwise, why would my teacher insist upon a warm studio (Ms. Lister claims that the heat allows you to stretch more easily) and why would a Bikram yoga class be so hot as to induce sweating and allow you to stretch more (cold muscle retracts).

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