There are three main options for pole dancing footwear; bare feet, dance/training shoes or heels.
Bare feet enable you to point your feet and have a more natural look, but provide no protection against bruises or hard landings. I find that my feet get fairly sweaty too, so I find it hard to grip, especially at show time when I’m nervous.
Dance/training shoes offer protection and additional grip but can appear clumpy and make maneuvering into some moves more difficult. I did find some great jazz shoes from Bloch that I’ve been using for a while now though.
Heels – often referred to as ‘stripper heels’ – will lengthen the line of your legs to make them look slimmer and more sexy and offer some additional protection. In terms of moves, they make some easier because you have the heel to hold onto, but there’s always the danger of spiking yourself; like I did the other week… twice. They’re also fairly heavy and difficult to walk in in you choose 5 or 6 inches, but I must say that I think they look great.
Whichever option you like, it’s advisable to practice in whatever footwear you’re going to use for a show. This is to make sure you’re used to the slight differences using different footwear and allow you to perfect different grips and how to move smoothly and safely between positions.