A Pole Dancer’s Guide To Pleasers
For the past couple of years, I’ve been captivated by the sexier side of pole dancing. Sensual movement paired with dynamic kips and jumps and gymnastics style dance has become the defining aspect of most of my training and teaching.
One of the best parts of that?
Whatever you’re goal, your first pair of Pleasers is in an investment into your dance and a new tool that will help you take your movement to different places. With each new heels purchase, the first question to answer should be ‘What is my goal?’. Here are my top 5 favorite pleasers shoes and boots based on the answer to that question.
Goal: I want a functional first pair of shoes for dancing low flow and slow, beginner movement such as pirouettes, spins, and walking.
The Pleaser Kiss is a 6 inch heel with a 2 inch platform meaning that there is about 4 inches of length that the arch of the foot steps on. It comes in a variety of styles and is a good beginner heel because it is relatively small and lightweight. Additionally, starting with heels (not boots) will require the ankle to do more work – strengthening the ankles in the process of dancing in them.
Pole dancer and blogger, Peach Lee Ray writes “You must be aware that the Pleaser Kiss is a gateway shoe, and once worn you will quickly fall into the hole of pole dance shoe addiction.”
Disclaimer: You have been warned!
Goal: I’m trying to dance more on my toe box and perform Russian Exotic style of movement.
For Russian Exotic style movement, I recommend working with a boot instead of an open toed shoe. Partially, this is because you’ll spend a lot of time pushing into your toe box with this style of movement and if you incorporate more of the dynamic, kip style throws into your dance, then you will want to have your toes covered. The alternative is to dance in heels with socks. In my mind, that’s cool…but it’s cool in like a socks with sandals kind of way. Another thing, I once saw someone kip in shoes with an uncovered toe and they landed with their big toe pulled back so hard that they broke it. That was enough to scare me into only kipping in covered boots.
One other thing that I’ve personally found is that it is actually easier to push into the toe box in a heel with a taller platform. An 8 inch heel feels easier to push into the toe box in than a 6 inch heel does. In fact, even now, I struggle with staying on the toe box in 6 inch heels.
The boots also go up higher on the ankle so that they kind of hug you and feel like a continuation of your foot rather than something attached to the foot that you need to control. That said, they are heavier.
The 8 inch Flamingo in Matte is hands down my favorite.
Think of the Flamingo as your basic boot. There are lots of different sparkly styles that you can get in the patent boot but I love the matte finish because it slides along the floor easier than patent and allows you to flow a bit better when you’re doing toe drags and skating on the toe box. The only thing that I don’t like about this boot is that it has hooks for most of the lacing up instead of eyelets. My opinion is that the hooks waste time lacing when I could be dancing. With the eyelets, you just zip the side zipper on and off. This isn’t as bad with an 8 inch boot but it does become more annoying in a knee or thigh high boot where you have to lace really high so, something to think about. If you kip or land hard on the front of the boot you can also start to bend the hooks into the shoe and cause some discomfort in certain moves.They run about $90 on Amazon.
Goal: I want to look amazing for a photoshoot
Ok, can we talk about some of these custom heel makers! They are Ah. Maze. Ing!
My Little Pony Shoe from Sparklingpassions. These babies run about $228 and are a super fun heel. Warning, you will get a “WHERE DID YOU GET YOUR SHOES!?” everytime you post an Instagram video so just @ mention Sparklingpassions in your captions! Also, love that the ponies are actually pole dancing!
I’ve ordered two pairs of heels from NightshadeDesigns and I love that they’ll customize any of the classic heel finishes to a boot as well. They do a lot of custom glitter, prism moonstone and even a glitter heel take on a Louboutin with a red bottom glitter finish. Boots run about $200 and you can order in either a matte or patent finish.
A couple other things to note:
- If you plan on dancing in the shoes rather than just taking pictures in them, Love Pole Kisses gives great advice; avoid metal pieces that hang off the shoe so that you don’t slip or scrape the pole.
- In general, regardless of the height of the platform, the arch itself is generally between 3-4 inches. The difference in the arch is not dependent on the height of the platform. Your arch height will be mostly the same heel to heel.
- I think of heels like my outfits. I wear the ones that best surface my energy for the day. With that said, check out this cute video from Sydney Pole which go over the different types of shoes and a fun starting off point for thinking about heels.