What is a Beam Shoe?:
Beam shoes are tight slippers, often made of leather with some traction on the bottom to keep you from slipping. They are worn by gymnasts, usually at the higher competitive levels, to help protect their feet from the pounding of tough skills on the balance beam.
Should I Get Beam Shoes?:
Beam shoes are a matter of personal preference.
The Pros: They can really help to cushion your feet if you perform a lot of flipping skills, leaps and jumps, or are practicing beam almost every day. If you take a hard landing on the beam or land on the edge of the beam, a beam shoe will protect your foot and make the landing less painful.
The Cons: Some gymnasts dislike having something on their feet, or think they lose the “feel” of the beam if they wear a shoe. Also, wearing a beam shoe can attract more attention to your feet in general. If flexed feet are a problem for you, wearing beam shoes can make it that much more obvious.
Before You Buy: Check with your coach before you purchase a pair of beam shoes. Some coaches dislike the way they look in competition and would prefer their gymnasts to perform with bare feet. Others have a brand they would like their gymnasts to use.
The Best Brands: These three brands of beam shoes are the most well-liked among top gymnasts:
Tiger Gym 10 Shoe: This is probably the most widely-used and favorite beam shoe of competitive gymnasts. These shoes are flexible and move with your foot, but have enough cushioning to protect as well.
Fun Fact: Dominique Moceanu wore these shoes at the 1996 Olympics!
Bleyer Elite Gym Shoes: Another great shoe. This one is a little bit bulkier but offers great protection.
Pegasus Beam Shoe: Very solid and sturdy shoe that lasts for a long time.
Poll: Do you wear beam shoes?