Ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached had their origin in the fetish footwear community or industry. They were primarily sold by prominent fetish footwear retailers, including the Little Shoe Box in London (United Kingdom), Pierre Silber in California (United States of America) and Solanj in California (United States of America), who sold them in the 1980's.
I asked Helga Silva (a teacher who proclaimed herself and her students in Portugal to know everything about shoes) about the exact origin of ballet boots. She wrote me back saying "They were amazed with this type of shoes and and they had never heard of such a boot! "
It is probably reasonable to assume that the designer of the first pair of ballet shoes or boots with high heels attached was a fan of pointe ballet dancing. The history of pointe ballet and pointe shoes is very murky and possibly, dates back to 1823.
Nowadays, women and girls, who do Clogging (an Irish form of dance) also get up on pointe. Here is a picture of the incredible Clogging move and its awesome look.
PAIN & INJURY
For most women, wearing ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached is a very painful experience. The wearer will usually experience considerable pain in her toes, feet arches and calf muscles.
Furthermore, the toes can easily be damaged to the point that it becomes impossible for the person to walk in any high heel footwear ever again. This should be the main concern for anyone, who tries to walk in ballet shoes or boots with high heels attached.
The pain is usually due to lack of physical attributes needed to wear heels so high and/or the lack of proper training needed to wear heels so high. Not every girl or woman has the physical attributes to learn pointe ballet dancing. Any qualified pointe ballet dance instructor can spot and weed them out. Similarly, not every women has the physical attributes to stand and walk in ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached.
Improperly-fitted ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached can also cause pain and injury. For women who try to stand and walk in ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, it is very important to use only properly-fitted ones.
Individuals who are most suited to wear ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached and not have a painful experience are those who:
- are underweight (as opposed to overweight)
- are physically fit
- have legs that are equal in length
- have feet that are equal in length
- have some previous training in pointe ballet dancing and are capable of doing simple pointe ballet moves (like getting up on one's toes)
- know and understand how to use toe padding
- have properly-fitted (or custom-fitted, if needed) ballet shoes or boots with high heels attached, that allow for the use of toe padding
- always have their toe nails properly trimmed (Ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached can wreak havoc with toe nails. The toes can bleed.)
Pointe ballet dancing is done on wooden floors only. The toes, feet, ankles, knees and hips simply can not take the pounding on any type of flooring that is harder than wood, like concrete.
Also, toe padding is commonly used in real ballet pointe dance shoes for pointe ballet dancing. Spook mentioned using padding on her website back in 2001. (More about Spook later.) It is strange and very disappointing that all of the shoe retailers, who sell ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached via the Internet have mentioned nothing about toe padding.
Lamb's wool (which is available as a Dr. Scholl product in most drug stores) or special pointe ballet toe pads are used to cushion or soften the impact on the tips of the toes. However, since toes need air circulation, one usually needs to air out the feet every few hours or so when using toe padding.
NOTE: There is one retailer that makes a special style of ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, in which the toe boxes do not allow the toes to touch the bottom of the shoes. The toe box is shaped more like the letter "v" (rather than the letter "u"), so that the toes are pinched together and unable to reach the bottom of the toe box. This design is a very thoughtful one, as it eliminates most of the pounding that the tips of the toes would take otherwise.
Unfortunately, this style is more likely to lead to Merton's neuroma and/or metasarglia (which are very painful foot problems involving the nerves in the front portion of the feet), if one stands up in them for long periods of time. Either of these problems (Merton's neuroma or metasarglia) can make it too painful and impossible for a person to walk in any high heel footwear ever again. So, for those who wears this style of ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, they should try to limit the amount of standing and walking in them to short periods of time only.
Pink satin pointe ballet dance shoes can be mesmerizing by themselves, when girls get up on their toes in them. Adding high heels to these pointe ballet dance shoes adds to the mystique, but eliminates the beauty and sexiness.
Regular shoes and boots with ultra-high 5 to 7 inch high heels (without platforms) are undeniably ultra-sexy (or erotic) as well as beautiful (or pretty). The first emotion or reaction to seeing a woman wearing such footwear is usually that of "joy" or "pleasure" and men may also get a strong sexual reaction.
However, ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached do not provoke the same feelings, as they are not as beautiful nor as sexy. Instead, one usually reacts to the sight of women wearing ballet shoes or boots with high heels attached with "awe". The first emotion or reaction is usually that of "amazement" and one says "wow". Remember that the Portuguese instructor said her students were "amazed".
NOT SUITED FOR NORMAL USE
Although it is possible for people (who have the appropriate physical attributes and desire) to train to wear ultra-high heel fetish footwear (with heels over 5 inches high and without platforms) as their normal everyday footwear (especially, in the right environment), it is generally inappropriate or unsuitable to wear them in most public places, especially during day-time hours. This applies especially to ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, that have the highest possible heels (about 8 to 10 inches high) without platforms.
Also, ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached are generally not suitable for outdoor wear (except where the ground is flat and level). While wearing ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, one can fall face-forward or backwards, when trying to walk downhill or uphill, respectively. This makes them far more dangerous than other styles of high heel footwear.
Furthermore, as mentioned previously, while it is possible to walk up staircases wearing ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached, it is not possible to walk down staircases wearing them. One can easily fall down with serious injury and possibly, break her neck.
So, the use of ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached is usually limited to BDSM scenes or under BDSM conditions. However, as I have mentioned on numerous other occasions, there are always some exceptions or extreme cases. In regards to every skill or talent that mankind possesses, there always appears to be some outliers or people at the extreme ends (either with no skill/talent or have/develop exceptional skill/talent).
In this case, there are some exceptional women who have actually ventured out into the public wearing ballet boots with high heels attached. One of them was a young woman nicknamed "Spook", who even wore her ballet boots with high heels attached 24x7 for a few months in 2001.
Last year, I received an email about a web site that shows two other women walking in ballet boots in a mall. One woman is named Mistress Nathalie, who walks in ballet boots, but has a few scary (or unstable and possibly, painful) steps with her right foot. The other woman is named Serena, who appears to walk better in her ballet boots than some people do in flats. Personally, I think her skill has something to do with her technique. It seems that Serena "shuffles" her feet and appears to glide along the floor. Also, her ability to turn with relative ease is simply amazing.
Like many people, I do not like thick platforms because they make the shoes too heavy and difficult to walk in. Walking in any footwear with thick platforms usually makes one look awkward, as if walking on stilts.
However, this style of ballet shoes/boots has no heels -or- are almost heel-less, making the footwear lighter. In fact, the retailer has the shoes modeled by some woman, who is standing up in some of the pictures. Also, the folks at www.afterdarkfashions.com.au indicates that it is possible to walk in this style of ballet shoes/boots for small distances.
The design of the toe boxes with this style of "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots is more tolerable or favorable for the toes than other styles of ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached. Pressure is placed more on the bottom of the toes rather than on the tips of toes.
However, this style of "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots has super-high insteps (equivalent to about 6 inch high heels), usually making the feet flex downwards over 90 degrees (or to the maximum). Standing up in them is equivalent to getting into the very difficult position that a pointe ballet dancer gets into when she gets up on toes on one foot and raises her other foot as high as possible. In ballet terminology, this position is referred to as "high arabesque".
Walking in this style of "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots is going beyond anything done in pointe ballet dancing. There is no equivalent dance move in pointe ballet dancing.
With the extreme degree that the feet are flexed into by these "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots, there can be extreme pressure placed on the ankles, knees and hips when one tries to walk in them. In other words, there is danger of injury to these body parts while walking in these "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots, unless one is very careful and does not over-stride (or take steps that are too long).
Nevertheless, this style of "heel-less" ballet shoes and boots is more sexy and beautiful than other styles of ballet shoes and boots with high heels attached. This is especially so with the ballet shoes with ankle straps style. In the retailer's picture of these shoes, the woman's feet (specifically, the front of middle part of the feet) can be seen to be arched or flexed downwards over 90 degrees, producing a look that is undeniably ultra-sexy as well as beautiful.