My First Pair of Pointe Shoes

By on July 11, 2016

I remember the first time I wore pointe shoes PointeShoes_SR2like it was yesterday. I was ten years old when I asked one of the older girls in my class if I could try on her pointe shoes. She said yes! (They were three sizes too big but I didn’t care.) Instead of trying something simple like a relev√© at the barre, I started turning! For a second I thought I was flying… and then… my feet cramped! The girls in the studio laughed and told me to take off the shoes and massage my feet. I was so embarrassed that I couldn’t handle the pain and cramping that I quickly hobbled off the dance floor and took their advice.

My teacher had warned me that pointe shoes are a lot of responsibility and they are very dangerous if you are not careful. Boy, was she was right! I had to wait another year before I was ready to get a pair of my own. Although that year felt like an eternity, I worked hard at building the strength I needed to wear pointe shoes. It was well worth the wait. I don’t take pointe shoes for granted because I know how hard I have worked to be able to wear them.

With the strength I need and the technique that I spent years building, I am free to dance any way I want to. Sometimes I actually feel like I am flying and it reminds me of my very first time wearing pointe shoes – without the cramping, of course!

Do you remember your first time wearing pointe shoes? What was your experience?

About Shannon Marie Rugani

After dancing with the San Francisco Ballet for eleven years, Shannon Marie Rugani is currently making her Broadway debut as an original ensemble member in An American In Paris and is the understudy for Lise Dassin. Shannon is a native California girl hailing from South Lake Tahoe, California and has been in love with ballet since she was six years old.

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