While specialized organ shoes are not widely available, many types of footwear have characteristics that make them suitable for use as organ shoes, depending on the needs and preferences of the individual organist. A lace-up ballet slipper, or capezio shoe can also double for an organ shoe for those organists who are on a budget. Like that of an organ shoe, the ballet slipper, or capezio shoe also allows the organist to "feel" the pedals, and play them without hitches because they are generally have the same characteristics of a specialized organ shoe: a leather upper and sole for flexibility.
Wearing appropriate footwear can protect organists from getting a "marching fracture", which is a type of incomplete fracture in bones. It is caused by "unusual or repeated stress" from some type of physical activity. This is in contrast to other types of fractures, which are usually characterized by a solitary, severe impact. Organists often keep their organ shoes in a box in a separate place from their everyday shoes, so that they will not get dirty. This reduces the risk of picking up grit or grime which could marr the pedals. Organ shoes for men and women are available from specialty stores such as www.organmastershoes.com and www.tictactoes.com.