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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Books: Pointe Shoes,Tips and Tricks

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Doreen Wells, a former Prima Ballerina of the Royal Ballet's Touring Company wrote about the book in


Dancing Times / March 2008


"... She (Angela Reinhardt) gives a short history of the development of the pointe shoe is made (and this is what all dancers want to know) the tips and tricks of how carefully to dismantle parts of the pointe shoe: to tune, adapt, fit and mould it to the foot. I found it fascinating because during my entire career I had so many problems with my pointe shoes – always looking fort he perfect pair. I had several tricks myself but learned many more after reading this book. What to do if the shoe is too big or small, if the heel slips off, or if it is too high, if the block is not square enough – to name just a few! Well, you have the answer here. Also, there are excellent exercises, again well illustrated, for strengthening the foot, and exercises for relaxation, all beneficial and important. …

This book is excellent and has obviously been inspired by the necessary quest to find one’s own personal pointe shoe. Some people may be lucky but many, as the author says; “can often take years to find their ’own’ pointe shoe”. A race against time, when you think how short is a dancer’s career. But here you have a valuable guide. I congratulate Angela Reinhardt on writing such a book – and recommend it highly. I think it is a real gem and should be in every ballet school’s library."



Edited by robi

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I thought I should give an update on this book as I have found it very useful. It also enabled me to modify 4 pairs of pointe shoes which otherwise would not have been worn so it has saved me money. It's easy to read, well laid out with numerous colour photos and some illustrations. There is no index at the back but it's only a small book (110 pages) and it's relatively easy and quick to find what you are looking for.

I particularly appreciated page 38, which is titled "Worrying about making the first incision". Angela reiterates that the pointe shoe is a tool that is meant to work for the dancer and sometimes it is necessary to modify the shoe otherwise the dancers feet will pay the price!

I also liked the chapters on foot exercises and foot hygiene.

My only criticisms are that there are no suggestions to prevent the heels slipping off and also the method of sewing elastics onto the heel which has been found to cause achilles tendonitis is suggested.

Overall a very practical useful book for anyone who wishes to learn how to modify and fine tune pointe shoes.

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