Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers

Demi pointe shoes?


Momtomildandmeek

Recommended Posts

Momtomildandmeek

I hadn’t really heard of these being used for young dancers until recently. I understand what they are, but I’m curious why more and more very young dancers are using them. Are they used at the barre only? It seems to be if the concern about going en pointe too young is the amount of pressure put on the toes/feet, demis aren’t really any different in that regard, are they? 
 

Our studio has never used them and just move very slowly with pointe work once the dancer is ready. I am seeing so many little insta famous ballerinas using them as young as 7/8 though so it has made me curious.

 

 

Link to post
Moonbeam

I used them only once a couple years ago in a group of pre pointe students. The dancewear store in the nearest large city didn't stock them, so the students ordered the Suffolk and Bloch demi pointes and returned and exchanged etc, till we got a good fit for each student. Students used the shoes weekly for 4 months before they were given their pointe shoe letter. The shoes can only be used on demi pointe, so no harm done, and I kept the shoes at the studio so that the students didn't use them inappropriately at home. They were excellent for building familiarity with the feel and handling of pointe shoes, including learning to sew them properly, balancing on flat, etc etc. I was very impressed at the difference they made in the maturity of the students when transitioning to pointe. I would use them again. Hope that helps in any way!

Link to post
AnastasiaBeav

My DD11's school recommends them for the 6 months to a year before the dancers go en pointe. They enable the dancer to get used to the shape and style of a pointe shoe before actually going en pointe because pointe shoes really do feel so odd when you first try to dance in them. From what I could see my dancer mainly did jumps and ballet walks in them. 

Link to post
Miss Persistent

It is very important to remember that demi-pointe shoes are under no circumstances to be used for any kind of pointe work - At all.

Students should not be trying to rise, releve, or anything at all en pointe in demi-pointe shoes.  Demi-pointe shoes do not have a proper shank or box and are not designed to support a dancer en pointe.

As Moonbeam said, what demi-pointe shoes are designed for is as a training device to assist dancers transitioning into pointe shoes, or to train in class on demi-pointe with a substitute for pointe shoes.  For example, it is very different to do a Battement tendu in a pointe shoes as opposed to a soft canvas shoe. The demi-pointe shoe helps train the dancer to use their foot correctly and strengthen the foot at the same time.  Similarly, doing Adage in a pointe shoe is very different to doing Adage in a soft canvas shoe due to the unstable nature of the shank and the box. Again, the demi-pointe shoe aims to train the dancer in a transitional manner.

One down side to demi-pointe shoes can be if a dancer is prone to clawing their toes.  In soft canvas shoes a teacher can more easily see and correct this.  In demi-pointes, this is hidden and the teacher must rely on the dancer correctly extending the toes.  It is important that if a students has clawing toes, they are addressed before using demi-pointe shoes.

Demi-pointe shoes are required in some training methods, usually from around age 11-12 which corresponds with when a dancer would be beginning pointe work.  Our students wear them right up into their Advanced levels, not just training for pointe work. Eventually students transition to doing a full class or centre in point shoes.   Demi-pointes can also be substituted for de-shanked pointe shoes. There is no need for a dancer to buy these specific shoes, as an old pair of pointe shoes will provide the same outcomes.

@Momtomildandmeek There are a number of previous threads on demi-pointe shoes that you can access by using the search bar in the top right corner.  I would suggest searching for demi pointe shoes and select "All my search terms". This board is a wealth of knowledge and resources! :)

 

Link to post
Momtomildandmeek

Ah, well then in this case the 7 year old in question has actual pointe shoes and not just demi, so that’s scary. She showed demis on her Instagram but then later showed video doing echappes en pointe.

So I understand more why another young dancer who has incredible flexibility in her feet/ankles would have gotten these to build strength first. I don’t understand why a 7 year old has either type of shoe.

Link to post
AnastasiaBeav
2 hours ago, Momtomildandmeek said:

Ah, well then in this case the 7 year old in question has actual pointe shoes and not just demi, so that’s scary. She showed demis on her Instagram but then later showed video doing echappes en pointe.

It is hard not to get sucked into what people are showing on Instagram and for that reason I do not follow any "Baby ballerinas." Let's hope that young dancer is receiving good instruction despite what is being posted. 

Link to post
  • 1 month later...

Our studio does not do the demi shoes. Our teachers feel if their feet are strong enough, the transition to pointe shouldn't be an issue. I was really worried about my daughter going into pointe shoes at 11 years old, but I'm shocked at how easily she transitioned with zero issues. There are other girls coming to our studio who had taken demi pointe classes and they are basically being put back to square one because their technique isn't what the teacher wants. Now, I am not saying that this has to do with the DP shoes, but likely more about the teacher. Another teacher at a different studio said it was a way to make money, not sure if I believe that but that is what was said. It isn't something that is very common in our area (Midwest).

 

On 8/24/2020 at 11:14 AM, Momtomildandmeek said:

Ah, well then in this case the 7 year old in question has actual pointe shoes and not just demi, so that’s scary. She showed demis on her Instagram but then later showed video doing echappes en pointe.

So I understand more why another young dancer who has incredible flexibility in her feet/ankles would have gotten these to build strength first. I don’t understand why a 7 year old has either type of shoe.

Wow! Seven years old seems crazy to me. It is interesting how the girls seem younger and younger. I wonder if there are studies on injury. I have always told my daughter this is not a race, it is a journey and that she has many moons to be on pointe. Let's not rush it.

Link to post
Doubleturn

I am not a fan of demi pointe shoes as I feel the correct use of technique in soft shoes is better for strengthening the foot.  None of my pupils has had a problem moving on to pointe shoes when they were ready.

Link to post
Miss Persistent

It's funny to me that on the other side of the world, Demi-pointe shoes seems to be seen as a preparation for pointe work - whereas over here, they are only introduced after all their pre-pointe training and simple pointe work has already begun.  We don't actually introduce them until generally 6-12 months after a student has started pointe work in actual pointe shoes, and the demi-pointes are a transition to dancing fully in pointe shoes.

Link to post
StormTrouper
On 8/23/2020 at 5:13 PM, Miss Persistent said:

it is very different to do a Battement tendu in a pointe shoe as opposed to a soft canvas shoe.

Adage... etc.

This statement fascinates me.  Could you please outline the main differences for how when executing BTs and Adage the feet are used differently in DPs versus in full/split sole leather and canvas soft shoes? Is it because different foot muscles are recruited because the box is stiff transversely?
 

Is there much written about DP shoes in the The Pointe Book I wonder.

 

Link to post
Miss Persistent

There are many reasons working in Demi-pointe shoes may feel different for a dancer.  There is a pseudo shank inside the shoe which creates a more uneven surface underneath the foot, the box may restrict the free movement and spread of the toes more than in soft shoes, and the full sole and inner shank create a more resistant surface for the dancer to articulate the foot against.

Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...