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If there’s one thing you’re concerned with as an Irish dancer, it’s shoes. It’s pretty much the only wearable item that I spend a lot of money on. Not only is it simply heaven to step into a pair of comfy sneakers after a long day dancing, but if your dancing shoes aren’t up to par, you won’t be either.

When you have oddly shaped feet, the quest for Irish dancing shoes that fit well – and remain well-fitting – is neverending. I have found a decent pair of hard shoes – the type that make sound when you dance – but soft shoes? Nah.

A few years ago I bought the Corrs Champion Split-Sole, but I never ended up using it. I tried and tried in vain to break them in enough to be able to dance in them, but it never worked. The breaking point came when I walked on demi-pointe for a little while – just to stretch them a little – and there was a sound from my big toe, leading to toe problems for well over a year. (However, judging from later development that might have happened anyway.) And so I ended up buying another pair, the Elite by Antonio Pacelli. They are very, very soft, so breaking them in wasn’t a problem at all.

Turned out that remaining well-fitting was a problem, though. The leather never quite stopped stretching, and the heel stretched at the wrong place and kept nearly falling off. It was quite the distraction from, well, dancing. Not to mention the fact that they really were too narrow, and completely out of shape despite not having used them all that much. I’m terrible at using my shoes…

Yesterday I tried on the Corrs again, just for fun, and they were very nearly possible to dance in! I would never have expected it. They were tight, of course, and slightly painful around the toes, but not nearly as much as I remembered. Some walking around the house with them and using them for at least a dance or two for some dance classes, and I think I’m set. It’s definitely the best solution for my wallet, and while I might soon have to buy new shoes anyway and the heel is kind of too low for me, I don’t have to hurry anymore.

Of course, what will be my excuse for getting the new Hullachan Pro now?

On another note, a friend of mine and I did interval running yesterday. Uphill. Do I feel sporty or do I feel sporty?