MDM Intrinsic : A Review

A lot of you have been curious what my feelings are on the MDM Intrinsic split sole shoes are. I couldn’t wear them immediately and give a fast review after having my injury. I’ve had the opportunity to wear them now for at least a week of classes on two surfaces.

First impressions:

They’re a little short. They recommend getting your street size and a 7.5 usually fits me fine. I’m afraid though if I go up to an 8 it may be too baggy. The 7.5 M I purchased gave me enough space in the toe area, width wise, to actually allow my toes to splay out while standing instead of being suasaged. While your foot doctor may appreciate this it does cause a lot of fabric wrinkling when I point my toes. I don’t know if I’ll change it to a narrow or not in the future.

I was also immediately at ease with the front foot pad. I’ve had much trouble with flat shoes in the front or heel pad. Either they’re bulky, in the wrong spot for me to turn, or in the wrong place for applied pressure when standing. These were nicely placed at the ball of my foot and heel. What was also nice was there was reduced bulk so I felt the floor immediately. My toes could feel the floor without excessive bulk from gathers. I was also excited for the pad because it’s suede type allowed me ease in turns. Some of my other shoes would drag. I had traction with this pad, but I also had transitional ease into turns.

The studio upstairs has polished wood floors. They are deadly slippery. I have yet to dance full force in these shoes on this surface because of my injury, but still wearing them I had controlled turns and I didn’t fear too badly my feet would slip from under me.

Wearing them for the first time I was intrigued by the unusually feeling of something lining my arch. It feels a little uncomfortable at first, only because I think a lot of us are not used to this feeling. I wear prescription orthotics that were casted to my feet so I’m used to the specific feeling of that, but this sewn in arch insert was nothing like that. I was hoping dearly that this arch support would not grow to become irritating.

They come with pre-sewn “criss-cross” elastic and depending on your foot it may fit right or you may need to adjust it. It doesn’t fit snuggly, it fits comfortably for me. If a little ill fitted because there’s rumpling in the elastic but it’s more of an aesthetic issue than a real fit for me. I’m sure you can adjust it if needed.

These shoes do not come with ties. they are finished off and there’s nothing to allow you to tighten to the foot. Some may feel this is a draw back, but the overall construction of the shoe fits my foot without worry of needing to tighten it’s grip around my foot. They feel securely on if not more trouble to get off than my normal shoes.


Thoughts after dancing in them:

I usually mark shoes left and right. I know some people are in the belief that you should wear them on both sides but because my anatomy is strikingly different for each side I just go with R and L. This method is helpful in these shoes. I believe the arch support will adjust to your arch for each foot specifically after time. If you keep changing the shoes they may never feel comfortable. Give them a week of dancing to start feeling the relief of the arch support.

They don’t do anything for my arch visually. While it creates a clean line from my heel to the balls of my feet where the insert ends, there’s a specific crease that ends just before the balls of my feet. It’s actually not very pretty. It makes me look like I’m not pointing my foot much at all opposed to shoes that gather and bunch more under my arch. When I point my foot I can feel my arch pressing against the insert. I guess this is there “controlled resistance”. While my arch is pressing against it, and I’ve taken mental note of it. I don’t notice too much concerning it. Maybe it’ll help rehabilitate my injured foot, but I think because it doesn’t reach to where my toes are pointing it’s not full resistance like a full shank pointe shoe would feel like. I’ve done pas de bourres with them and have felt no difference in my feet being tired from them. Actually it’s been a while since my feet were actually tired from dancing.

At rest when standing, I haven’t noticed too much significance when I’m without barre and relying on my foot muscles to work. I still get foot cramps but but not as bad I guess. I’m still not sure about this part. I do feel something against my arch, but I don’t know yet if it’s the full arch support we may be looking for. At least it’s a little compared to none?


  • ease in turns
  • padding is great for both grip and ease of turns on wood and tiled flooring
  • arch support (?)


  • aesthetically unappealing
  • not sure if the arch support is really supporty?

Things to take into consideration: I am injured. I love degages and tendus, this makes my arch muscles very strong. I’m no professional, I don’t dance for 5 hours + every day a week.


Inconclusive. I really like them for turns. Aesthetically I’m not fond of them. They are comfortable though. I guess the jury is still out on these.

3 thoughts on “MDM Intrinsic : A Review

  1. I’m not a fan of these shoes. I found that they seemed to stick to our dance floor making turns more difficult. I do not like the way it looks on my foot and I definitely do not like the color. I haven’t decided if I’m going to keep them as back up shoes or just try to sell them. Glad to see they seem to work a little better for you! 🙂

    • They work okay and they’re the best shoes I’ve found for turns so far but otherwise I could care less for them. I’ll keep an eye out for new models in the end of summer/beginning fall.

      Good luck on your recital!

  2. I just got these and I agree they’re incredibly aesthetically unappealing. I got a 10, which gives me just enough room in the toes when I’m flat/doing a plie, but as soon as I point, they are baggy and unsightly. I do also like them for turns, however.

    I also feel that the vamp is incredibly deep. I feel like it comes more than halfway up my foot – also an aesthetic issue for me. Is this just me?

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