Dance Trainers Guide

Dance Trainers Guide

Dance Trainers Guide

It’s important to know exactly which type of dance trainer will be the best choice for your dance style. Whether you are just getting started in the process of choosing your first dance trainer or searching for your next performance pair, the Bloch Dance Trainer Guide is packed with information to assist you in your search.

From the variety of dance trainer styles to choosing the most comfortable size, here is our guide to finding the best dance trainers for you.

What are Dance Trainers?

Dance trainers are trainers specifically designed to be worn for dance, such as hip-hop, jazz or Zumba. While there are many different types of dance trainers, each is engineered with different materials, soles, fastenings and shoe weight for a specific purpose, such as street or studio dance. 

Types of Dance Trainers

The different types of dance trainers are distinguished by the design of the sole: full sole, split sole or midsole. Each of these types of dance trainers will provide a different level of foot support and arch lift applicable for different dance styles and wear. The best dance trainers for you depend on your dance style.

Full Sole Dance Trainers

Full sole dance trainers are supportive because they have a continuous rubber sole that makes up the underside of the shoe.

A full sole dance trainer shoe doesn’t allow for much flexibility since the base of the shoe is coated in a rubber layer. However, this style of shoe includes more resistance beneath the arch of the foot. If you are looking for a shoe with a solid and sturdy appearance, the full sole style is a favourable choice. Additionally, full sole dance trainers are often good for children as it allows them to learn technique and dance moves more easily before introducing a sophisticated arch.

Full sole dance trainers are a good choice if you are looking for a pair that can be worn in or outside the studio. Because it’s not recommended to wear ballet, jazz or tap shoes outside of practice, these trainers are a great option to wear to and from practice as they are lightweight, designed for dancers and can be carried easily in your dance bag.

Split Sole Dance Trainers

A split sole dance trainer only has rubber under the ball and heel of the foot. The noticeable gap of rubber on the arch of the foot makes the shoe more flexible and emphasises a dancer’s arch, point and line of foot. The flexibility of a split sole dance trainer is seen as an advantage because it allows the dancer to execute correct foot technique and form more easily. However, split sole shoes do offer less support beneath the foot. This makes split sole dance trainers a bit lighter in weight than other sole options, and an optimal trainer for executing turns.

While some full sole and mid sole dance trainers are suitable for outdoor use, such as street dancing, most dance trainers with split soles are designed to only be worn for dancing inside studios. For example, Bloch split sole dance trainers are made with a specific non-marking sole, meaning the shoes will not damage dance studio flooring, and wearing the shoes outdoors can damage this non-marking lining. In addition, Bloch split sole dance trainers are dance trainers with spin spots on the sole of the shoe, which allows the dancer to spin and slide with further ease.

Mid Sole Dance Trainers

Midsole dance trainers are a hybrid between full sole and split sole trainers. These trainers have a continuous rubber base like a full sole; however, they provide a unique and supportive arch lift like a split sole. Unlike split sole options, these trainers can be worn on the street as the rubber will provide traction while the design will allow for quality dance technique.

If you like the structure of midsole dance trainers, but you are looking for a trainer that provides easier turns or less traction, BLOCHspot stickers can be added to the base of your dance trainer. BLOCHspot stickers, an innovative product by Bloch, are stickers that can be applied to the bottom of any trainer to create a spin spot. BLOCHspot stickers are complimentary with every purchase of the Alcyone midsole dance trainer.

What are Dance Trainers Made of?

While dance trainers are inspired by the look of a classic trainer, they are engineered to support the dancer in ways that traditional trainers are not. Below are some elements you will find in a standard dance trainer.


The dance trainer's upper is the material that covers the top of the foot. The upper part of a dance trainer is often made of flexible mesh material to allow for breathability and bending of the shoe for a range of movement.


The outsole of a dance trainer is the material that comes in contact with the ground. The outsole of a dance trainer should be shock-absorbing and offer a level of traction. A split sole dance trainer’s outsole should consist of a material that is optimal for turning and will not damage studio floors.


The insole of a dance trainer is the material on the inside of the shoe that supports the bottom of the foot. The design of the insole will differ between the split sole, midsole and full sole dance trainers; however, the material should be cushioned with impact protection to offer the best comfort while dancing.

Heel Counter

The heel counter of a dance shoe is the material on the back of the shoe which will stabilise and support your foot. Dance trainers should have a padded internal heel counter to hold your feet securely in place and prevent blisters when dancing.

Collar or Topline

The collar or topline of a dance trainer, which is where you insert your foot, is often made of a padded and stretchy material to allow dancers to move their feet freely while providing enough ankle and foot support.

Toe bumper

The toe bumper, or toe cap, of a dance trainer is an extension of the outsole that covers the very front of the toes. Dance trainers should have a durable toe bumper in order to protect your toes when dancing and withstand the natural wear-and-tear that comes with dancing in trainers.


Dance trainers often come in a lace-up or slip-on fastening. While a slip-on dance trainer will give a visually smoother appearance, a lace-up trainer will allow the dancer to tighten or loosen the shoe to their comfort. Lace-up trainers are more common because dance trainers are meant to mimic the design of regular trainers and because many dancers prefer the option to adjust reinforced laces.

Choosing the Best Dance Trainers for Dance Class

When it comes time to decide which type of dance trainer is best for you or your child, there a few considerations to make.

  • If you’re looking for a dance trainer to wear to dance indoors only, and one that can be worn with dances that require turns and perfect technique, then a split sole is a great option.
  • If you’re looking for a dance trainer to wear in-between and to-and-from dance classes that offers comfort after even the most intense practices, then a full sole dance trainer is the one to go with.
  • If you’re looking for a shoe that can do both, we’d recommend a midsole hybrid. Midsole shoes will allow you to dance in the studio or street with the best functionality possible.
  • If you’re just getting started in dance or if you’re not quite ready to make an investment in a new dance trainer yet, BLOCHspot stickers can be applied to the base of any trainer to instantly create a spin spot.

If you’re still not sure which dance trainer is best for you, it’s always a good idea to ask your dance teacher or instructor for advice and recommendations.

How should dance trainers fit?

Like all dance shoes, dance trainers must fit accurately in order to serve the dancer properly. Dance trainers should feel snug on the foot without compromising comfort. If the shoe is hurting the side of your feet, that is a good indicator that the shoe is too narrow. If toes are bending, curling or overlapping when a dance trainer is worn, that indicates the dancer needs to try a bigger size. If there is extra material in the shoe, especially near the toes, then the shoes may be too large.

When choosing a pair of Bloch dance trainers, please refer to the fit advice on the product pages for each dance trainer, as we provide different advice for each style of trainer. For more information on sizing and conversion charts, visit our BLOCH UK size guide.

Where to Buy Dance Trainers

With so many options, it can sometimes feel overwhelming when deciding where to purchase a dance trainer that’s going to provide the quality and fit that you desire. However, taking the time to conduct research into the different retailers and dance shoe brands should be the first step before diving into a purchase.

It’s important to purchase dance trainers from a trustworthy and established dance shoe brand that understands the industry and the different needs of dancers. This will ensure that dance trainer you buy will be made of high-quality materials and excellent construction. After all, if you’re investing in a new pair of dance trainers, you’ll want a pair that can stand the test of time.

For example, Bloch shoes are perfectly designed and customised to provide for any age and proficiency level. With a complete collection of dance trainers for adults and children, we aim to create confidence, stability and beautiful lines for any dancer.

What are the Best Dance Trainers?

The best dance trainers are going to be the ones that leave you feeling comfortable, confident and courageous when you step onto the dance floor. That’s why here at Bloch, we strive to equip dancers with the absolute best selection in dance trainers – all made with premium materials and artisanal construction.

As the innovation leader in dance shoes for nearly a century, every Bloch dance shoe is designed with the dancer in mind – ensuring that we provide dancers with the high-quality shoes they need in order to dance their absolute best.

About BLOCH Dance Trainers

Bloch dance trainers can be found on the feet of professionals in the dance industry across the globe. Bloch provides a superior craft in dance shoes – perfect for students, teachers and masters.

We lead the way as the ultimate dancewear destination. Our materials, such as our revolutionary moldable suede, arch-hugging neoprene or breathable mesh, combine with revolutionary technology to meet the demands of any modern dancer.

Bloch offers a wide selection of dance trainers, including full sole, midsole and split sole, for men, women and children. Many of our styles also offer a variety of material, colour and lace options. Browse Bloch adult dance trainers and children’s dance trainers to find the perfect pair today.

Have additional questions about dance shoes? Explore our blog, The Pointe, for different dance shoe guides and more.