Musicians have their instruments, athletes have their sports gears - what about Latin dancers? They have their Latin dance shoes, of course! Because the feet are the most crucial part of a dancer's body, the dance shoes could make or break a performance. That’s why most dancers take their time shopping around for the perfect pair of dance shoes, they don’t just grab a pair and hope for the best.
If you’re a beginner, you might be wondering what essential factors should you keep in mind every time you’re shopping around for a pair of Latin dance shoes. That’s what this guide is all about!
As you know, Yami Shoes offers a comprehensive selection of dance shoes, there’s literally a pair for everyone. And to help you find the dance shoes of your dreams, consider the following first:
The Type of Dance Shoes
You’re spoiled with options when it comes to types of dance shoes to choose from. You can get the pump-style, strappy, full-lace up heels and booties. So whether you’re into booties, lace-ups, or strappy heels, there are styles that will be perfect for every outfit. That said, the type of shoes to get should be suitable for your feet shape.
Strappy dance shoes, particularly T-strap style, are perfect for narrow feet because of the adjustable straps and the narrow footbed. Just tighten the straps so the shoes won’t slide off. Peep-toe (booties and pumps) and cage heels are a must-have for people with wide feet. The feet are nice and secure in these styles, giving you the support you need and comfortable wear to boot. On the plus side, open toe shoes are best worn for dances that require more toe pointing and articulation of the feet. The opening of the shoes lets you execute footwork with precision.
… and speaking of boots, if you want the best of both worlds - shoes that will suit wide and narrow feet alike - we highly suggest the lace-up booties. Lace-up booties are practical, comfortable, and versatile. They’re a joy to wear and are quite stylish!
The heels take the brunt of the body weight when dancing so it’s one of the first shoe components that break down. When it comes to shoes, quality is everything. Cheap shoes are made with cheap components. If the last thing you want is for your shoes to fall apart in the middle of a performance then invest in a pair of shoes that will last.
Be sure that the heels are firmly fitted to the heel of the shoe to maximize stability and support. Also, the heels should be made with quality materials so they won’t break easily. The heel height is a matter of preference but it’s best to start at a height that feels the most comfortable for you.
Dancing shoes are different from your average walking shoes because they have suede or microfiber soles. Regular rubber soles are too grippy and dancing with regular shoes might lead to an injury. Suede and microfiber materials are designed to grip the dancefloor without limiting the range of movement. These materials allow the wearer to slide, spin, twirl, etc. on the dance floor.
Traditionally, suede material is used for the dancing shoes’ sole but here at Yami’s we use microfiber material for the soles because we are a cruelty-free brand. What’s great about microfiber is that it’s a breathable, durable, and low-maintenance material. It works just as great as suede leather but it does not harm the animals or the environment.
Some of our shoes also come with “street dance soles,” these are soles that could be worn on and off the dance floor. Regular shoes aren't meant for dancing so most dancers tend to pack a change of shoes with them. With the street dance soles, there’s no need to pack an extra pair of shoes. Wear the dance shoes as they are. Our Street Dance Sole collection consists of shoes that look like regular high heels but are made for dancing and walking. Thanks to the chic designs, you are literally getting the best of both worlds.
Latin dance shoes are different from ordinary walking shoes because the heels have a solid steel shank that runs through the heel, soles, and foot bed. This added feature provides stability and support to the foot. And unlike walking shoes, dance shoes with steel shank won’t soften over time nor break off from dancing. You get all the support and stability you need to execute the most elaborate footwork with confidence while also getting more wear from the shoes!
Latin dance is all about the footwork so you need a pair of dance shoes that could keep up with your frenetic pace. Again, you get exactly what you pay for. If you bought a pair of cheap dancing shoes then it will only take a few uses before these shoes wear down. High-quality Latin dance shoes, on the other hand, are made with durable materials. These shoes will last you a long time and you can stretch their life even further through proper care.
Flexibility is also an important factor that you should consider when buying a pair of Latin shoes. The shoes should mold with your feet, it should move with you - not limit your range of movement. It’s normal for new leather shoes to feel rigid when worn for the first time but after several uses, the wear becomes more comfortable. But because dance shoes should provide a snug fit, the first few uses will lead to pain, cuts, and blisters.
Latin dancing shoes that are crafted with vegan leather - such as Yami Dance Shoes - do not require breaking in. The material is thinner than genuine leather but just as durable. We use top-quality vegan leather for our shoes because we are against animal cruelty. Vegan leather is also prized for being low-maintenance and flexible, the material won’t hurt your feet at all.
Because dancing puts the brunt of your body weight to your feet, your dancing shoes should be comfortable. Of course, different dancers seek different levels of comfort. A beginner may be comfortable with low-heel dance shoes while a professional might be comfortable wearing 4-inch stilettos.
But comfort isn’t just about the heel height. The fit, the arch and ankle support, the insole, the shoe style, and the overall quality of the dance shoes play a critical role when it comes to the comfortability of wearing dance shoes.
Dancing for hours often leads to forefoot pain, leg fatigue, and an aching back because of the way that the bodyweight shifts while dancing. A pair of dancing shoes that come with cushioned insoles help alleviate forefoot pain and other discomforts associated with dancing for an extended period. The cushions distribute the body weight evenly on the foot while providing better arch support.
Every pair of Yami dancing shoes come with built-in cushions. The cushions absorb peak impact while improving the fit and wear of the shoes. That’s the secret why you can dance with your Yami heels 4 times longer than ordinary dance shoes! These shoes also improve ankle support for better posture and performance.
But don’t take our word for it, try a pair today and see why Yami Latin dance shoes are getting rave reviews from professional dancers and newbies alike.