Choosing the best shoes for Tai Chi can be a challenge, but don't limit your options. Several footwear choices are available for your Tai Chi class or practice session, including fitness shoes and shoes intended for other disciplines. Tai Chi shoes should be comfortable, allow movement and provide traction.
Tai Chi Shoes
Traditional Tai Chi shoes are available inexpensively through a martial arts supplier. The shoes have a thin rubber sole and cotton surface. Tai Chi studios having a formal dress code may require you to wear traditional Tai Chi shoes, so be sure to check with your instructor or studio regarding appropriate or required footwear.
Soft, Flexible Fitness Shoes
Basic tennis shoes that allow movement and provide traction will suffice for your Tai Chi workout, but you can find even better options if you think outside the box. Try to find a shoe having a thin sole that allows you to feel the ground for better balance. Look for fitness shoes intended for yoga, wrestling, or other martial arts disciplines, as many provide the same features required in a Tai Chi shoe.
Studios Requiring No Shoes
Some Tai Chi studios request that no shoes are worn, but allow socks or slippers. Try lyrical dance shoes or gymnastic slippers, which are available through a dance retail supplier. They will provide traction and foot protection if you'd rather not wear socks or go barefoot, but be sure to get the instructors approval beforehand. Always inquire about dress code policy before making your Tai Chi shoe purchase.