Sizing and fitting of dance pumps is different from that of normal outdoor shoes and will depend on their intended use.
Fitting is best done by actually trying on the pumps. If this is not possible then an alternative might be getting a sizing from someone with similar sized feet who wears toeandheelGOLD.
We recommend buying a couple of sizes to try, then return the unwanted pumps for an exchange or refund (https://www.toeandheelgold.com/returns/)
Dancers competing in high level competitions and Championship events will normally select pumps that fit the feet very tightly and we have prepared a sizing guide (below) to help.
Tight but not too tight
We know that competitors like tight fitting pumps but dancers should avoid selecting pumps that are too tight. If the pumps are too small then they will stretch out of shape and place excessive pressure in particular on the sides of the pumps, often resulting in bursting.
Our dance pumps are manufactured from soft leather uppers and outer soles and use custom insoles which provide impact protection across the whole foot whilst maintaining the soft and flexible nature of the pump.
The pump should be a snug fit on the foot when first tried on - a slight buckling of the toes should not be a problem as this will ease quickly when the pumps are stretched in. However, if the foot does not go into the pump and the pump and has to be forced on by excessive pulling on the back of the pump or laces then this is a good indication that the pumps are too small.
For new or young dancers
For individuals new to Highland Dancing, young dancers and those who participate in early level competitions or dance just for fun the same tight fit desired by competitors will not be required and outdoor shoe size will likely be a good starting point.
We suggest that a good fit is found then the foot fits reasonably snuggly in the pumps with no buckling of the toes but importantly no sizeable gap between the front of the toes and the front of the pump.
The pumps are made from soft leather and are designed to stretch fairly quickly and will grow to a certain extent with the dancer's feet. Gaping at the sides or front of the pump will result in a very loose fit and will detract from the point that the dancer works to demonstrate.