Glam challenge: 96 competitors in Paris stiletto race

The only rule is to be perched on heels at least eight centimetres (three inches) high -- the prize is boxes and boxes of shoes.

(AFP) -

The only rule is to be perched on heels at least eight centimetres (three inches) high - the prize is boxes and boxes of shoes.

A total 96 shoe addicts, a common condition with fashionistas, have signed up for Friday evening's National Stiletto Championship, taking place after office hours on an indoor track in the old stock exchange building in central Paris.

"The finalists are training very seriously," said Caroline Gentien, who works for the online shoe-sale site that came up with the idea, Sarenza.com. "Walking on heels is no piece of cake."

The finalists hail from all over France and made it into the glam challenge after a series of regional races.

"We came up with the idea just two years ago, and this year 400 candidates signed up for the regional races," Gentien added.

The prize is 3,000 euros worth of shoes.

The race, being run at around 9:30 pm (2030 GMT), is a three-part relay over 180 metres (yards) involving 32 teams of three with names such as "Yes We Can", "Sexpistols" or "Superwoman".

Volunteers from the Red Cross will be standing by in case of accident, but last year's competition wound up without a single twisted ankle.

Winners of the 2008 edition will be competing again this year, a TV journalist, a psychologist, and a lawyer competing under team name "Talk To My Foot (Parle A Mon Pied)".

"We all love shoes and we love having fun," said journalist Dorothee Kristy, 29. "The only training we do is running to catch a train or a bus every day."

Also taking part in the event is stilleto school "Talons Academy", a private business that doles out tips on how to walk in heels without hurting one's back or one's ankles.

"A lot of women love high heels but don't dare wear them," said school founder Marine Aubonnet. "Or else they cheat. They go to a rendez-vous in flat shoes and put their stilettos on at the last minute. It's true that it is harder to find your balance on heels."

The trick for Friday's contestants, she said, was "mastering the half-turn. Turning is a key, you have to get it right for each foot. Stilettos is all about technique."

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Chiropractic Assistant

    £16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Chiropractic Assistant is needed in a ...

    Recruitment Genius: Digital Account Executive - Midlands

    £18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

    Recruitment Genius: Web Developer

    £28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides coaching ...

    Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application Developer

    £30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...

    Day In a Page

    Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

    The secret CIA Starbucks

    The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
    Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

    How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

    The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
    One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

    One million Britons using food banks

    Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

    The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
    Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
    Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

    Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

    They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
    Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
    The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

    The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

    Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
    How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

    How to run a restaurant

    As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
    Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

    Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

    For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
    Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

    Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

    The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
    10 best tote bags

    Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

    We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
    Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

    Paul Scholes column

    I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...