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Club Foot and Pointe?
By lacey_lou Comments: 148, member since Wed Jul 13, 2005
On Mon Dec 04, 2017 04:48 PM

I have a dancer at my studio who has been working really hard all year. She takes 4.5 hours of ballet a week on top of taking jazz, tap and contemporary. She is 11.5 and is strong enough technique wise to go on to pointe next year, the problem is she has a club foot. One foot is almost a size and a half smaller than the other foot and it is formed differently. Is it even possible for her to be on pointe? Would the difference in the size of feet cause issues while she is up on her toes? I have never seen this issue before and I need to figure out what would be best for her.

Some of the other students in the class will be going on pointe starting in January, and I know she is not ready to make this step so soon. I would love some advice on this issue if any of you have dealt with this before. If it won't be possible, I need to start to get her excited about dance in other ways so it won't be such a blow to her ego if she can't go on pointe.

3 Replies to Club Foot and Pointe?

re: Club Foot and Pointe?
By lacey_lou Comments: 148, member since Wed Jul 13, 2005
On Mon Dec 04, 2017 04:53 PM
I need to add that her club foot is not as bad as it could be, she has had corrective surgery and the foot is properly aligned. She also has incredibly strong ankles and legs.
re: Club Foot and Pointe? (karma: 1)
By Lb54321 Comments: 30, member since Mon Aug 29, 2016
On Mon Dec 04, 2017 05:39 PM
Number one I would let her feet grow and develop more. At eleven, her feet are not nearly done growing and it is still considered fairly early for pointe work. I would wait, in her case, until she is thirteen.
Second, I would have a doctors advise. Not just any doctor, but a doctor who has experience working with dancers.
If her foot is aligned and not malformed I would imagine that it is possible for her to safely work in pointe shoes BUT she may be very unbalanced and you would have to take special care that she stays properly aligned.
re: Club Foot and Pointe?
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6867, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Mon Dec 04, 2017 06:42 PM
^ All excellent points.

If she has already had corrective surgery I would be SURE to get a doctor's approval before even considering this. I also agree that I would not even begin to consider this until her shoe size has not changed for at least a year. Under the circumstances I would say an x-ray is a must.

Talk to her parents. I usually lend prospective students my copy of The Pointe Book by Janice Barringer Image hotlink - 'https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1328863620l/179287.jpg' and sometimes the Eliza Gaynor Minden book as well Image hotlink - 'https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41HVbV-%2BI-L._AC_UL320_SR254,320_.jpg'

I would start the discussing with the parents with an assurance that you love the child and want to make sure you don't do anything that would hurt her. Be sure to tell them what a beautiful dancer she is and make sure they understand that if the doctor does not recommend pointe at this time, or in a year, or two, or three...if doesn't make her any less of a dancer.

Good luck

Keep On Dancing*

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