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joriebelle

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DD12 has worn Grishko ProFlex for the past 2 years and she loves them.

SO told me today that he would like her to wear Gaynor Minden or Russian Pointe just for the next competition.  He mentioned he liked the way they make the foot look when it's pointed.  She has very small feet so they need help in making the arch look bigger.  I don't know.  Anybody have any comments?  I know nothing about this stuff.
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Angel2228

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My dd just switched to Russian pointe and her feet look very beautiful in them. BUT she's having issues coming down. She has strong feet and high arches, but isn't rolling through her feet nearly as well as she was in the grishkos. She needs to either break them in more or wait until her feet are even stronger to push through. So for her, she will be going back to grishkos if she can't get them to bend more.
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JojosDanceMom

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I very much dislike when a teacher pushes one brand of a shoe over another. The pointe shoe preference is very unique to each dancer. That said, often times professional companies will issue one brand of shoe, so it's good to be adaptable. My DD would pick Russian Pointes of Gaynors any day. She would alternate between Greishkos and Russians anyway. She had different things she liked about each of them. But Gaynors, she tried them once... they looked very awkward on her feet when she was flat, and when she switched back to her regular pointe shoes she ended up with tendinitis because of them.
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wvpointe

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From reading other posts I am thinking SO wants her to wear these shoes for a different regional YAGP? Gaynor Mindens have a reputation as being a "cheater" shoe because they are pre-arched synthetic shanks. There is no "breaking in" process. If sized/fitted properly they can absolutely make average feet look "more arched".  I can see why an SO would say "let's wear these shoes just for this competition, so that your feet look perfectly arched in the eyes of the judges."
Your 12 year old daughter is a beautiful and talented ballerina from what I have seen from the videos you have posted here. She has obviously put a lot of hard work into her dancing. I don't think she needs to change her shoes. She works well in her Grishkos and she should keep working through them and strengthening her feet.  Making a temporary change for a competition can also lead to headaches. Her arch may look good, but if the shoes don't feel "right" to her it could completely throw her off.  Gaynors have a very different feel than traditional pointe shoes.
Now with the Russian Pointes does he have a specific style/shank strength in mind for her to try? There are Russians that are comparable in feel to Grishkos. She would probably do well in a flexible shank Russian, but if SO wants her in a full sole shank that "springs" her on to pointe rather than having her roll up that would raise a red flag in my mind that it is not concern about her as a dancer that is motivating him to ask for her to change shoes.
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joriebelle

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Quote:
Originally Posted by wvpointe
From reading other posts I am thinking SO wants her to wear these shoes for a different regional YAGP? Gaynor Mindens have a reputation as being a "cheater" shoe because they are pre-arched synthetic shanks. There is no "breaking in" process. If sized/fitted properly they can absolutely make average feet look "more arched".  I can see why an SO would say "let's wear these shoes just for this competition, so that your feet look perfectly arched in the eyes of the judges."
Your 12 year old daughter is a beautiful and talented ballerina from what I have seen from the videos you have posted here. She has obviously put a lot of hard work into her dancing. I don't think she needs to change her shoes. She works well in her Grishkos and she should keep working through them and strengthening her feet.  Making a temporary change for a competition can also lead to headaches. Her arch may look good, but if the shoes don't feel "right" to her it could completely throw her off.  Gaynors have a very different feel than traditional pointe shoes.
Now with the Russian Pointes does he have a specific style/shank strength in mind for her to try? There are Russians that are comparable in feel to Grishkos. She would probably do well in a flexible shank Russian, but if SO wants her in a full sole shank that "springs" her on to pointe rather than having her roll up that would raise a red flag in my mind that it is not concern about her as a dancer that is motivating him to ask for her to change shoes.


I really appreciate your comments!  SO didn't say anything except to try Gaynors or Russian Pointes.  I don't know anything about them so I wouldn't know which style or what hardness etc etc.; I was doing some reading online and it's pretty overwhelming!  I think I need to find out exactly what he means.  All he said was maybe a different shoe would make her feet look better at competition.  Yes, we are doing another YAGP regional.  DD doesn't have bad feet but because they're so short they don't show a good arch or point as well as longer feet do.  I don't know what to do.  I agree with you that if she is just changing shoes for a competition she's not going to be used to them and probably not comfortable with them so that isn't going to be good for her confidence.

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joriebelle

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Quote:
Originally Posted by oatmella
I'm not sure about Gaynors - we know a girl who switched to them and her very arched feet appear to be not as arched in Gaynors. Russian pointes can be really flattering - she would probably want to try a flexible shank for easier roll-through. Russian pointes are quite hard and I think most all of them would have a harder shank than grishko pro flex. They would probably be more durable than the pro flex as well which would save $ [smile]. I don't know how small her foot is - but I don't think most stores stock them in the smallest sizes. Our local store's smallest size that they stock in Russian pointe is 35. Other arch-flattering shoes she may want to try are suffolk and freed.


Thanks for the feedback!  She wears a size 3 in ProFlex which I'm not sure what that corresponds to in Russian Pointe.  The smallest Russian Pointe I see on the website is a size 33.  It says that corresponds to a size 4 US shoe but a 4 US shoe is a kid size and is actually bigger than a 5 in ladies (kids 4 = ladies 6; kids 3 = ladies 5).  The best thing obviously would be to go in and get fitted. . .  
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dancingpeanut

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Reply with quote  #7 
I am surprised to hear that a 12 year old is in the Pro Flex. When DD was fit at the Grishko store in NYC, the fitter recommended those if she needed new shoes for performances because they don't need much breaking in, but for everyday wear, put her in the 2007 with a soft shank. She said she usually only recommends the Pro Flex for advanced/professional dancers.

DD briefly tried GM's when she was recovering from a broken foot. They were good for getting back into pointe because they offered a lot of support and springiness, but as she got more advanced, she hated that the couldn't "feel the floor" in them.

If the teacher isn't thrilled with her current shoes, maybe you can bring him along to a fitting and he can work with the fitter to find something he is happier with.
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ggsmith

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Reply with quote  #8 
A pointe shoe has to fit the dancer and it takes time to switch to a different shoe.  Platform sizes are different, support is different, the feel of the floor changes.  It seems a little crazy to me to switch right before a competition, especially to the very different synthetic shoe which requires somewhat different techniques to control.  

My daughter is not near the level of an invitation to NY, so I wouldn't enter her in more than one regional baring a bizarre incident at the regional.  For instance, my friend's DD lost the heel of her shoe entering the stage for her classical variation this year.  It was not obvious from the audience (we didn't know until after her performance) but quite clear in the photos and really affected her dancing, as you can imagine.  Her family decided against traveling to another city and competing again this year.

Perhaps I'd feel differently if my daughter scored a 94 and wanted to give it another go at a different regional, but I have to wonder if changing shoes to better show off an arch and traveling to another regional is really the place to spend time and energy for a 12 year old, no matter how talented.  (And I have to agree, she is a lovely young dancer!)  Is the teacher hoping to brag that his student went to the finals?  It just strikes me as odd.
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oatmella
I think size 33 Russian Pointe is like a size 2 kids so your dd may need a size 34. Definitely try to find a store with the smaller sizes to try! My dd also has small feet, but her feet look quite a bit bigger/longer in Blochs than in Grishkos. So I would suggest trying on Blochs as well!


We may try a few different things.  I think you're right about a size 34.   Tomorrow we'll go for some fittings and see what happens!  DD may have some ideas too; she's been en pointe for over 3 years and probably knows a little about what feels good.
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joriebelle

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ggsmith


Perhaps I'd feel differently if my daughter scored a 94 and wanted to give it another go at a different regional, but I have to wonder if changing shoes to better show off an arch and traveling to another regional is really the place to spend time and energy for a 12 year old, no matter how talented.  (And I have to agree, she is a lovely young dancer!)  Is the teacher hoping to brag that his student went to the finals?  It just strikes me as odd.


This is her 3rd year doing YAGP and she's gone to Finals both previous years.  This is a older category though; her first year as a junior.  I totally see your point about her only being 12.  I was hoping to just let it go for this year and try again next year.  For DD, I don't think it's feeling like she has to go to NY more than it is just wanting to know how much of a difference that lack of makeup made.  If she scores similar to what she did in Chicago than we know the makeup had nothing to do with it.  She just wants another chance to have her performance scored for what it really is.  She made a mistake by not wearing enough makeup and I made a mistake by having costumes made that are way too light for her.  Still, I don't think she's suddenly going to go from top 24 to 1st place.  DD is hoping for top 12 and will be happy with that.

SO has had many students go to YAPG Finals so I don't think it's about bragging.  He just wants her to do her best.
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meatball77

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Reply with quote  #11 
I thought all the locations were full weeks ago, how could you still get her in what's an obviously super full category?

I think getting new shoes (and a different brand all together) just for a performance is a horrific idea.  However, if she perhaps needs to find a more flattering shoe that's fine.  Go try the Gaynors or the russian pointes (or better yet, take her into a store with a good supply and try everything on her).  You really should go in and have a fitting every year or so even if you're happy with your current shoe just to see if there's somthing better out there.  My daughter was fantastic in her last shoe but we went and had her try them on again and she found one she liked even better with a shorter break in period and a much prettier shoe.

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Ktyyyyyyy

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Reply with quote  #12 
DD's second pair of pointe shoes were Grishko 2007's. She stayed with that style of shoe for two years and loved them. When she started training with a different ballet teacher, he didn't like those shoes for her. He felt they didn't flatter her feet. He went with us to dd's next pointe shoe fitting and had her switch to Russian Pointe Rubins. There was no denying that they made dd's feet look much better. She didn't like how they felt though, but agreed to try them. They were harder and at first they slipped off dd's very narrow heel, even though they were the right length and the narrowest width available. The hardness was causing some pain in the big toe area, but DT showed her how to manipulate that part of the shoe with her hands when they were brand new, and then they felt much better. To combat the heel slipping off, I just redid the ankle elastic and made it way tighter. DD still had to get used to the shoes as I think they had a smaller platform than the Grishkos, but after a few classes, she loved the shoes. It's been 3 years, and she is still in the Rubins. She tried one other pair once when the store didn't have her size, and went right back to the Rubins the next time. DD has small feet too. She wears a 36 in RP and a 5 in street shoes. She's 15.
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joriebelle

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Quote:
Originally Posted by meatball77
I thought all the locations were full weeks ago, how could you still get her in what's an obviously super full category?

I think getting new shoes (and a different brand all together) just for a performance is a horrific idea.  However, if she perhaps needs to find a more flattering shoe that's fine.  Go try the Gaynors or the russian pointes (or better yet, take her into a store with a good supply and try everything on her).  You really should go in and have a fitting every year or so even if you're happy with your current shoe just to see if there's somthing better out there.  My daughter was fantastic in her last shoe but we went and had her try them on again and she found one she liked even better with a shorter break in period and a much prettier shoe.



I sent in my registration a few days ago, told I was waitlisted, and yesterday I got an email with the title simply saying "Congratulations!" and she was moved over from the waitlist to the competition.  Someone must have dropped out.

We're going in today to have some shoes fitted.  It probably is a good idea to have a fitting every year or so.  Helps to get familiar with other styles of shoes too, I think.
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tendumom

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Reply with quote  #14 
Actually, a child that young with a growing foot and a changing foot (they all change as they progress), should have a fitting more than once a year. Try on everything.

When dd made the switch from Grishko to Freed, she had to retrain herself to get used to them. She added beginner pointe for a few weeks until she completely adjusted Gaynor's are also very different and may require an adjustment period.
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joriebelle

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Thanks tendumom.  We'll do that.
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camercad

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DD wears Russian Pointes, and Freeds are her back-up pointe shoe brand. At her SI last year, one of the teachers told the girls that she prefers not to have anyone wear RPs because of the hard shank. However, she told DD that she was the exception because she has the opposite problem of most girls - working the shank too hard. 
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joriebelle

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How old is your DD?  
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5678StarMom

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Quote:
Originally Posted by camercad
DD wears Russian Pointes, and Freeds are her back-up pointe shoe brand. At her SI last year, one of the teachers told the girls that she prefers not to have anyone wear RPs because of the hard shank. However, she told DD that she was the exception because she has the opposite problem of most girls - working the shank too hard. 


Super interesting! My DD14 is in Russian Pointe rubins, hard shank or medium if we can't get hard. And they die in the shank and the box. I'm trying to figure out if shellac will help, because she's a sweaty foot kid. She wasn't even getting a few hours out of the Bloch or Suffolk that she has also tried. I didn't know that this was unusual.
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cynmckee

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5678StarMom
Super interesting! My DD14 is in Russian Pointe rubins, hard shank or medium if we can't get hard. And they die in the shank and the box. I'm trying to figure out if shellac will help, because she's a sweaty foot kid. She wasn't even getting a few hours out of the Bloch or Suffolk that she has also tried. I didn't know that this was unusual.


She needs to rotate at least 2 pairs of shoes (preferably 3).  They need to totally dry out between uses and it sounds like that isn't happening.  Get anti-perspiration spray (not deodorant) for her to spray her feet with before each class.  There are these little talcum powder packets that we get here that you put in your shoes after use to help them dry out (I can't find them online...it's weird.)

My dd blows out her box way before her shanks are done because she is a sweaty foot person too.
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ballerinamom13

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Reply with quote  #20 
I know people will disagree with me - go for it - but Freeds really are the way to go if you're serious, and I know you guys are.  If you have a Freed fitter in your area, she should try them - you will never go back to anything else.  Yes, they are expensive. Yes, they can be a pain to get your maker.  It's all worth it. There is a reason almost all Companies wear Freeds.  
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camercad

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Reply with quote  #21 
DD is 15 - she was wearing Freeds exclusively for her first year. But, as soon as she increased her pointe work per week, it became cost-prohibitive for us because she was going through them so quickly - even with rotation. I do try to save Freeds for performances and auditions (knowing the shoe will only last the weekend). But, at this point, she says that she feels the most comfortable in RP Muse, and therefore, more confidant. She has a high arch, wide metatarsal but narrow heel. So, there were only a few types of shoes that worked for her.  
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Bonbonmama

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Reply with quote  #22 
DD is one of the few girls at our studio that the SO is OK with wearing RPs because she can correctly work through the shoe (not pop herself up en pointe which is a common user error with them).
While I agree that Freeds in general look pretty, I do not think they are the end all, be all shoe. They are certainly not the best shoe for DD, neither in looks, fit or durability..! [wink] we have had good luck with Suffolk, RPs and Mirellas. Some Grishkos, and yes for a while she was in Freeds....having an obscure maker didn't help, of course.
Our studio does not allow Gaynors, neither did our former studio so we have zero experience with those.
Side note, she has been en pointe since she was a young 9?? That's really early, no..?
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #23 
Well, we went to the pointe shoe fitting and she came out with a pair of Russian Pointe Muse that she loves. I didn't know RP came in half sizes; we ended up with a 34.5.   They didn't have Rubins in her size to try, although the bigger pair that she tried on she really liked.  .  We may try those next time.

Yes, she has been en pointe since she was 9.  Nine years and 2 months, to be exact LOL.  When she began, she was only allowed to wear the shoes if she was in class with the SO.  As she got stronger, she was able to wear them in all of her classes.
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prancer

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Reply with quote  #24 
Joribelle, I hope the shoes work well and she gets the placement she wants this time. If she doesn't, remember leveling up in age is a big deal. I realize it isn't the same thing, but if it helps: my dd13 received scholarships from every BTF convention she attended as an 11 and 12 year old. But she wasn't selected at her BTF convention this year (she moved into the 13-15 age group). She is still a better dancer than last year, but her competition is better too - as it should be.
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joriebelle

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Quote:
Originally Posted by prancer
Joribelle, I hope the shoes work well and she gets the placement she wants this time. If she doesn't, remember leveling up in age is a big deal. I realize it isn't the same thing, but if it helps: my dd13 received scholarships from every BTF convention she attended as an 11 and 12 year old. But she wasn't selected at her BTF convention this year (she moved into the 13-15 age group). She is still a better dancer than last year, but her competition is better too - as it should be.


Thank you Prancer!  And you're right about keeping things in perspective.  Just to keep improving every year.  Scores and placement at YAGP mean nothing in the long run, and I do think she's improved since last year.  

What is BTF?  That is great that your DD has received scholarships at every one of their conventions!
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