Elastoribs are a fantastic invention for reducing the amount of tension on the achilles tendon, particularly if dancers tie their ribbons on far too tightly.

There are a few handy tips that are well worth considering before you start attaching elastoribs;

When you open up your elastoribs packet, you will see that the ribbons have been cut into four identical lengths, with a piece of elastic pre-sewn into it.  You will notice that the length either side of the elastic is not the same.  The shorter length should be the section that gets attached to your pointe shoe.

However, before you start stitching, you may need to shorten this section, as the elastic needs to sit right at the back of the achilles tendon to do it’s job effectively.  I have learned from my own personal experience, that if I don’t cut the shorter length of the ribbon on the elastorib, the elastic winds up at the front of my ankle, therefore it doesn’t alleviate the strain on my achilles tendon.  This all depends on the measurement around the ankle, so the amount you need to cut off will vary from dancer to dancer.

I also prefer to double my ribbon over before I stitch it on, for extra security, which will once again change the amount of ribbon you will need to cut from the shorter length.  It is a good idea to pin the elastorib to your shoe to see exactly how much needs cutting.

Another important point is to make sure the seam where the elastic meets the ribbon is on the underside and not on the outside, so the ribbon sits completely flat.

Written by Vicki Attard

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