Dance can be costly, no matter what level of dancer you are. From classes, competition fees to dance shoes, leotards, tights, and even basic hair supplies, like hairspray, bobby pins, and hairnets, the costs can add up quickly. Raising money for your dance fees through FlipGive is a great way to ease the financial burden. FlipGive lets you raise money by earning cash back on your daily purchases. From the top brand stores to restaurants and hotels, FlipGive makes these fees seem less of a burden. With the money that you raise it is best to invest in quality dance items that are bound to last longer. Below are a few tips on how to stretch your dance dollar as far as it can go!
Being fitted for that first pair of pointe shoes is one of the most exciting and important moments in a young ballerina’s life. With this great reward, comes great responsibility. However, pointe shoes are arguably the most expensive and shortest-lived item a dancer will buy. Averaging about $100, pointe shoes are one of the most costly dance accessories that are purchased. For a beginner, this first pair can last up to a year given the dancer’s foot doesn't grow or change. For a professional dancer, however, the average life of a pointe shoe is only about 12 hours of work! It is vital then that each dancer learns how to properly care for their shoes from the very beginning. With proper care and knowledge, each dancer can learn how to extend the life of their shoes. Below are a few tips and tricks for making pointe shoes last longer.
Have A Professional Fit You For Pointe Shoes Every Time
Arguably the most important thing you can do for yourself or for your child who is beginning pointe is to schedule a pointe shoe fitting with a well-trained professional fitter. Any local dance store that sells pointe shoes should have a trained fitter on staff. If not, it is worth the trip to one that does. A first time fitting can take up to an hour. This session will include measuring the dancer’s foot, assessing body alignment, technique and strength and trying on different brands and styles of pointe shoes. The right pointe shoe will fit your foot shape and size, work with the strength and flexibility of your foot, and put you in proper alignment. By nature, a proper fitting pointe shoe will last longer than an ill-fitting one because it will work with your foot rather than against it. It is also very important to remember that you should never buy pointe shoes with “growing room”. This can be extremely dangerous for any dancer as you can risk injury. A pointe shoe should fit the foot “like a glove”.
Take Care of Your Pointe Shoes
Since pointe shoes are a high-cost item with a short life, it is best to know how to properly care for them and make them last as long as possible. First, after each class or rehearsal, give your shoes time to dry out. If you simply stick them in your dance bag until your next class, they won’t properly dry out and the sweat from your feet will break down the materials of the shoe. Find a safe place where you can let them dry overnight. You can even stick a newspaper or paper towel in the box of the shoe to absorb extra moisture. Second, once you reach a more advanced age and level it can be a great idea to buy multiple pairs of shoes and rotate. Giving each pair time to dry and rest will help them last longer, especially for dancers who have pointe classes and rehearsals every day. Lastly, it can help to know tricks for extending the life of pointe shoes that are “dead” or near “dead”. For example, jet glue can help to re-harden a softbox or shank. For those who sew, darning the box of the pointe shoe can also help prolong the life and can be great for stability!
Many dance studios will supply costumes for performances but in some cases, the parents are expected to buy the costumes. This is especially true for dancers at a competition-based rather than a performance-based studio. For those who have to buy their own costumes, it is key that you take good care of your costume and have it properly cleaned after it is worn. Dance costumes can often be recycled and repurposed or sold once they are no longer needed. Be sure to invest in a sturdy garment or dance bag for transport to and from the studio and performance venue. For dancers cycling through many different costumes for performances and competitions, learning how to sew or knowing someone who does can be a great plus!
3.Ballet, Tap, and Jazz Shoes
Unlike pointe shoes, other types of dance shoes can have a long life if they are taken care of properly. Most dance shoes (ballet, tap, jazz and lyrical) are available in a variety of materials and as a rule of thumb the more you invest in your shoes the better quality they tend to be (and the longer they will last). For young dancers that aren’t finished growing, however, there is no need to spend top dollar on tap shoes that they will grow out of quickly. As long as the shoes fit well and are properly cared for, they should last a reasonable amount of time.
Best Tips for Making Your Dance Shoes Last
- Don’t wear your dance shoes outside of the dance studio, especially jazz shoes. Dance shoes were meant for the dance floor only. Wearing them outside of the studio can attract dirt and debris that can wear the shoes out faster. Additionally, surfaces not meant for dancing such as concrete can be hard on the materials dance shoes are typically made of (soft leather, canvas, etc.).
- Let your shoes dry out! As with pointe shoes, it is best to let your shoes dry out each day to help extend their life.
- Clean your shoes. When needed your dance shoes should be cleaned. Canvas shoes can be hand washed in cold water and air-dried. Leather shoes can be wiped down with a damp cloth for spot cleaning.
- Always wear socks or tights inside of your dance shoes. Wearing a barrier inside of any type of dance shoe is always a good idea to provide prevent the sweat from your foot seeping into the shoe. Sweat will break down your shoes and prevent them from lasting their desired lifespan.
4. Leotards and Tights
For most dancers, the standard class “uniform” is leotard and tights. These items can be pricey and may not last very long if they are worn every day. Usually, dancers need many shades and colors, such as tan tights or pink ballet tights which can increase the cost. As is true with anything, proper care will help your dancewear last longer. First, be sure to wash your leotards and tights after each wear. This is imperative for helping them last longer as well as ensure proper hygiene. Next, pay attention to the care instructions on the tags. Most leotards and tights should be hand washed or washed on gentle and hung to dry. Lastly, learn how to sew! Teaching yourself how to fix holes in leotards, runs in tights, and other problems will save money in the long run.
Keep Dance Cost Down With the Help of FlipGive
Let’s face it, dance is expensive! With the help of FlipGive, you can raise money for your costly dance expenses while you, your friends and family shop and dine like normal. If you’re staying at a long weekend dance event, FlipGive is partnered with top brand hotels and restaurants around the United States and Canada, so you can earn cash back for your dancer while participating in performances, events, and competitions. FlipGive can help get you started with raising money for all of the dance apparel, dance shoes and other fees that come with dance. With these 4 tips, you can be sure to look like a professional dancer while saving money! To learn more about how to fundraise for your dance with ease, contact FlipGive today. You can also schedule a coaching call to speak with an onsite FlipGive professional about how to successfully fundraise your dancing.
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