How Ballerinas Customize Their Pointe Shoes

  • Published on Sep 8, 2018
  • Olivia Boisson is a corps de ballet member with New York City Ballet. Boisson has been with NYC Ballet for seven years. As a corps member, Boisson dances 10 to 12 hours a day, six days a week. She showed us how she customizes her pointe shoes for performances.
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    Following is a transcript of the video.
    Olivia Boisson: Hi, I'm Olivia Boisson. I'm a corps de ballet member with the New York City Ballet. Every dancer is trying to make their pointe shoe a part of them, so they wanna mold it to their foot as much as possible. So there's a lot involved to make that happen. It's really important, because we have them on from 10:00 a.m., to 11:00 p.m., so you wanna make sure that there's nothing bothering you. So you fix them and fix them until they're right.
    If I'm performing and rehearsing a lot, it could be up to three pairs a day. They aren't very strong when you're working with them all day. So, they typically do die pretty fast. Regular ballet flats are just, very soft. They're usually canvas, or leather. You can't go up en pointe with them. Pointe shoes are normally a bit harder so that you can get up on your toes. And men typically wear the ballet flats, and women normally wear them to warm up, but not always. Pointe shoes are around $80 to $90 a pair. At least that's how much they were when I was growing up. But the company gives all the pointe shoes for free, so we have as many as we need.
    Every dancer sews their pointe shoes differently. All to support your ankle in different ways. I put mine a little bit further forward, probably like an inch away from this seam. I'm just gonna smush the box. The box is where your toes go, and it's typically pretty tough, and pretty hard when you get a new shoe, and so you want it to be a little bit more malleable so that you can move your toes inside the box. So, I'm gonna smush them.
    I need to be able to move that part, so I'm gonna stick my heel in the middle, and pop it like that, so that, now I can bend this part of the shoe. This is called the shank. It's kind of like, your arch support. But you want it to bend, so that you can point your foot. So now they bend in here and they bend here, so it's a little easier for me to get my foot in there. Now I'm gonna bang them, because they're still pretty loud. And when you're dancing, it's very distracting. Alright.
    I usually will put a little Second Skin. They're like little gel squares. So, I usually put them at the tips of my big toes, 'cause that is where most of the pressure is when I'm en pointe, and then I tape them so that they stay on. And then I'm gonna put an elastic here, and then I'm gonna put my paper towels on. I just wanna get a good bend in my shoe, which is why I'm like, pushing them out like this. They feel pretty good.
    Alright, so now the bottom of the shoe is all, not as smooth, so it's harder to like, slip. So, this is rosin. You can like, smash it and it becomes powder and you kind of, just wipe your foot. Like, the edges that are slippery, and it's a lot less, slippery. Sometimes the very tip here will get very soft. So then I will use this hot glue to harden it back up again. That way you don't have to like, sew a whole new shoe. You can sort of make this last a little bit longer.
    Some dancers will put it on the outside. Sometimes they do that, to give it a little bit more support at the top, so that it's not so soft when you get up. With a new pair, it just really keeps you all the way up. With a dead pair, it'd get really soft in here. Everything would just be much more soft. So it's harder to dance hours and hours when the shoe isn't keeping you up. You have to do a lot more work.
  • EntertainmentEntertainment

Comments • 6 880

  • Angelina Brunko
    Angelina Brunko 2 hours ago

    Her: bangs shoes against the wall
    Me: Did I do something?

  • Zoe Hannah
    Zoe Hannah 3 hours ago

    Black ballerina??? Never seen that...
    Is she always a black swan?

  • kate the weeaboo
    kate the weeaboo 4 hours ago

    How ballerinas customise their shoes

    ... Are you sure they aren't destroying them to fit their feet XD

  • kamille seven
    kamille seven 8 hours ago

    Ok Nike let's get it going. All this great equipment for every sport. What about great toe shoes that dont require all of this for dancers?

  • Kody Shu
    Kody Shu 11 hours ago


  • Priss manu Fm
    Priss manu Fm 14 hours ago


  • hdb80
    hdb80 14 hours ago

    And also, it's almost $300 a day to dance at her level. That's crazy.

  • hdb80
    hdb80 14 hours ago

    This girl has the prettiest legs I've ever seen.

  • ella murphy
    ella murphy 16 hours ago

    imagine never having to pay for your pointe shoes ever again.
    that would be _heaven_

  • Wahyu Aji Bagaskoro
    Wahyu Aji Bagaskoro 18 hours ago +1

    "and just beat the devil out of it" 0:02

  • Amanda Afrilla
    Amanda Afrilla 20 hours ago

    the way she bang the shoe :D

  • sheila flores
    sheila flores 22 hours ago

    She has nice feet for being a ballerina

  • kat treasure
    kat treasure Day ago

    ballerinas when they get new point shoes:
    *I’m about to end this man’s career*

  • Daphne Cooper
    Daphne Cooper Day ago

    I do point but I go through two pairs a year lmao

  • Gunny
    Gunny Day ago

    someone needs to do a point shoe crackng asmr

  • Caramel Yummy
    Caramel Yummy Day ago

    I feel really bad for that shoe

  • Claudia Blane
    Claudia Blane Day ago

    beautiful leggsss

  • Alli’s Corner
    Alli’s Corner Day ago +1

    *voice cracks* *voice cracks* *voice cracks*

  • Lauren Hastie
    Lauren Hastie Day ago

    3.47 those r tied really high

  • Sunshine studios

    0:02 when you see a spider on the wall

  • Megan Stewart
    Megan Stewart Day ago

    i’m getting my first pair of pointe shoes soon, but i’m 14 and i’m worried i’m going up on pointe to late

    CASTE Day ago

    Now we know why they die pretty quickly

  • Molly Matsie
    Molly Matsie Day ago

    I find it sooo satisfying

  • aleksandra bello
    aleksandra bello 2 days ago

    Ma il muro nn si spacca...

  • karthika murugan
    karthika murugan 2 days ago

    Remember when they told us black girls can't be ballerinas? How they will all grow up to have big boobs and butts... 😂😂😂

  • Fátima Legorreta
    Fátima Legorreta 2 days ago

    Mal, mal , mal ella prácticamente venció sus puntas

  • Lady TekNo
    Lady TekNo 2 days ago

    Why has this process not been made any easier over the decades and Decades of beers ballet is been a thing

  • •Amber The Midnight Wolf•

    When your neighbors are having a party and you knock on their door to tell them to stop or lower the sound 0:02

  • _Lin_Al
    _Lin_Al 2 days ago +1

    For all y'all who are saying she's destroying expensive shoes : you need to break pointe shoes you cant use them if you dont do all that stuff it's like trying to wear someone else's braces ( I know weird metaphor) but my pointe ( lol) is that it doesn't feel good for your feet .

  • Dina Hassan
    Dina Hassan 2 days ago

    Oh la la 😊you r so pretty

  • caitlin
    caitlin 2 days ago

    beat the devil out of it

  • Rajlakshmi Debi
    Rajlakshmi Debi 3 days ago

    I’m a ballarina

  • Srijana Basu
    Srijana Basu 3 days ago +1

    That girl be destroying her shoes😂🤣😂🤣

  • Help me Hobi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only J-Hope

    I didn’t know ballerinas use rosin, but the purpose of it is the complete opposite compared to how string instrument players use it

  • Help me Hobi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only J-Hope

    i’m not a ballerina but HOW TF SHE HAS VERY NICE TOES

  • R.Destiny Hall
    R.Destiny Hall 4 days ago

    I only clicked this video because I love African American ballerinas.

  • liverpool Never walk alone

    0:02 My mom when I say no to her.

  • Îlayda Илайда but I was born in Germany

    *aggressiv smashing at wall*

  • Jasmine Bellisima
    Jasmine Bellisima 5 days ago +1

    This was an asmr for me, if it was for you too, click this

  • Nikki Lynne
    Nikki Lynne 6 days ago

    Two words shoe toucher

  • blìzzárd
    blìzzárd 6 days ago +2

    How ballerinas -customize their pointe shoes- break their point shoes

  • jenna crowell
    jenna crowell 7 days ago

    how are her feet so nice most pro ballerinas feet r destroyed

  • Adventures with PAULSOL


  • Rachel Ong
    Rachel Ong 8 days ago

    Professionals: Yup that's the way to do it
    Not professionals: It's amazing how the shoes never break or get broken from all that

  • Aki Haru
    Aki Haru 8 days ago

    0:03 what I do with my homework

  • Jannah Bint Al Yusuf aka Jannah225

    She has beautiful feet. With and without her pointe shoes on. It’s clear that she has this down to a fine art.

  • Miss Tiff
    Miss Tiff 9 days ago

    She's a very beautiful girl

  • Cristina Belloso
    Cristina Belloso 10 days ago

    I love how the 2nd thing I see in the video is her smacking her shoe into a wall

  • Billie Eilish
    Billie Eilish 10 days ago

    I'm 10 but i have flats and i'm in grade 4 Ballet. and in grade 5 we usually are capable of getting them...wish me luck peeps

  • H & N Gamers
    H & N Gamers 10 days ago

    *So they kill the shoe COOL*
    me: **trys and the shoe breaks a two piece part** oops maybe I ruined.... It...

  • Kat Playz
    Kat Playz 10 days ago

    2:25 when she pushed it down three times
    _oof oof oof_

  • Natalie Andrew
    Natalie Andrew 10 days ago

    god i wish I still did Ballet.

  • Yagirl Zion
    Yagirl Zion 10 days ago

    I’m so dead

  • HowCome Seriously
    HowCome Seriously 11 days ago

    I don't get the idea of pointing your tiptoes It's not natural and painful to watch

  • Christen Krug
    Christen Krug 11 days ago

    0:03 When you can’t get the conditioner out of the bottle.

  • Panic! Trash
    Panic! Trash 11 days ago

    Bruh if you go through 3 pairs a day you shouldn’t break them in that much. I mean break them in just enough but banging them against a wall like a hammer is a lil much sis

  • Vitoria Bortolazzi Monteiro Pereira

    É louca de fazer isso

  • Tsuki
    Tsuki 11 days ago

    I danced for like 4 years and I never got my point shoes cause I was too young. I miss dancing but the teacher I was with doesn’t teach anymore and I loved her she was a awesome teacher but I want to teach myself so I can create my own style.

  • Diana Villasenor
    Diana Villasenor 11 days ago

    4:25 the rosin abuse hurts me inside. (I play Viola and we use rosin on our bows to make sound)

  • Avril Rodriguez Pastore

    Y acá vemos: como maltratar pintas a nivel dios

  • dadica b
    dadica b 11 days ago

    So basically you just need to smoush the shit out of them

  • khadija Desouky
    khadija Desouky 11 days ago

    So elegant

  • Ethel
    Ethel 12 days ago

    Exactly ... professionals.

  • shamimi iman
    shamimi iman 12 days ago

    How ballerinas customize their Pointe shoes
    " Just beat the shit out of it " 😂


    Her feet look so nice, how?! Mine always had blisters and broken toenails

  • Kawaii Potato
    Kawaii Potato 12 days ago

    It sounds like she’s breaking a bone.

  • Khrystal Morales
    Khrystal Morales 12 days ago

    3:31 if I use paper towels for my feet when I take pointe class I would LITERALLY die

  • Gemma Sherman
    Gemma Sherman 12 days ago

    Damn she really destroys them. Most dancers soften them a good bit but my goodness she just MURDERED THEM

  • Mickey Johnson
    Mickey Johnson 12 days ago

    I love how the end result is a all beautiful and graceful but getting there is literally destroying the shoe and your feet

  • Tara Djekic
    Tara Djekic 12 days ago

    Soooo satisfying

  • Meipee Zheng
    Meipee Zheng 12 days ago

    If you break the shank then you can't go up on point because there is no support

  • Totally Not Becca
    Totally Not Becca 12 days ago +1

    *insert collective omg at how nice her feet are*

  • Sophie's ASMR
    Sophie's ASMR 12 days ago

    I know every dancers worst nightmare: wearing white costumes on your period

  • helloo moto
    helloo moto 13 days ago

    This looks better than secs.😊😊😍

  • Elizabeth Hung
    Elizabeth Hung 13 days ago

    Rosin?!?! Isn't that for orchestra? Oh well, I guess I can pick up a new hobby now!

  • All around Aurelia Gamer worlds

    I love watching this because the crack is so sadisfaingxXx⛸⛸

  • Margrethe Lundblad
    Margrethe Lundblad 13 days ago +1

    You are NOT supposed to crack the sole, her elastic band is WAY to big and all ballerinas need to wear pads on their foot tip!

  • THE Unicorns
    THE Unicorns 14 days ago

    I like her body

  • Cookies Love
    Cookies Love 14 days ago

    3:00 can we talk about HOW CUTE HER TOES ARE

  • Monique Rodriguez
    Monique Rodriguez 14 days ago

    That poor shoe 😂😂

  • Victoria Robertson
    Victoria Robertson 15 days ago +1

    Oh wow 😮 I’m lost for words... very interesting

  • AdrianZeAwes
    AdrianZeAwes 15 days ago

    She’d be a really good chiropractor, I want to be that shoe

  • AdrianZeAwes
    AdrianZeAwes 15 days ago +1

    How do they not get foot cramps or calve cramps?

  • Bella Blanchard
    Bella Blanchard 15 days ago +2

    I wish I could dance en pointe. I have been taking ballet since I was five, but was never able to pick up the vocabulary no matter how much I try. I took my points exam in September and failed. I started to take pre pointe but I honestly wasn't learning shit and I was with a bunch of eleven and twelve year olds on their first year of dance. I'm embarassed to go back in September but this is my DREAM. what's a girl to do...

  • Em Blenn
    Em Blenn 15 days ago

    1. Get shoes
    2. Rip bottom

  • Sophia Luo
    Sophia Luo 16 days ago +1


  • Deeya Kumar
    Deeya Kumar 16 days ago

    who else knows what rosin is because they are in orchestra.

  • Єлизавета Платонова

    Говорят , русские пуанты самые лучшие , они через 2 занятия привыкают к ноге балерины из за натуральных материалов , у них насок (пятак) не пласмасавый , из за этого ногти остаются целыми .

  • Jordan Bailey
    Jordan Bailey 17 days ago

    TVclip: recommends this video
    Me: ok bored nothing else to watch
    Me: watches the video and gets shoes and starts beating them, crushing them, sawing them
    Mom: very concerned and calls the ambulance

  • charliefoxx81
    charliefoxx81 17 days ago

    3:30 - so the paper towel...I'm guessing that's for all the blood? lol

  • Ana Luísa
    Ana Luísa 17 days ago

    2:58 how to break your wall lol

  • Gio Ga
    Gio Ga 17 days ago

    Can’t they just manufacture pointe shoes that are just right

  • ChunkyYetFunky Yep
    ChunkyYetFunky Yep 18 days ago

    Ballerinas are perfect and graceful

  • Vlatiania TheWolf
    Vlatiania TheWolf 18 days ago +1

    Me in my mind : okay, okay let's watch this and see how ballerinas customize their sho-

  • Aine Whelan
    Aine Whelan 19 days ago

    What she should do is do ballet without doing this

    HOWABOUTNOW 00 19 days ago

    Muy bien

    HOWABOUTNOW 00 19 days ago

    Muy bonito y complicado a la vez

  • Itz_Lexi Crystal
    Itz_Lexi Crystal 20 days ago

    I’m starting my first pointe class today 💗😁

  • Kirnjot Toor
    Kirnjot Toor 20 days ago

    Poor pointe shoes this is just sad rip

  • LaLa Lisa
    LaLa Lisa 20 days ago