It seems hard to believe but all the back to school sales have started which means that soon it will be time to send the little darlings back to school. (And quiet will reign in the house again!)
Back to school shopping can mean more than just school supplies. It is probably time to check on your child’s shoes to make sure that they are ready to start off a new year. It is particularly important if you have a child starting school for the first time.
What kind of shoes should you look for?
Kid’s shoes come in lots of patterns and cool colors. There is an amazing array of shoes. You need to be able to look at all the choices and find the shoes best for your child’s foot. There are some things needed for their developing feet.
Like adults, children’s feet do swell during the day. Do your shoe shopping later in the day to get the best fit.
If your child is less than interested in going shoe shopping, take them to a children’s shoe store. Children’s shoe stores are set up to keep children occupied and busy during the shopping experience. The staff should also be trained to help you with the experience.
You will need to have their feet measured by someone who knows what they are doing. Getting the right fit each time is important because you don’t want them to outgrow the shoes any faster than they will normally. Both feet need to be measured to see if they are the same size. (Not all people’s two feet are the same size!) You need to buy shoes to fit the larger foot.
The fit is really important. You don’t want to buy shoes that are too big or too small. Too small will hurt your child but too big can cause them to walk in a way that is not normal and it will affect their foot development. So make sure the shoes fit correctly. One note about when your child is trying on shoes – make sure that they are not curling their toes inside the shoes when they try them on. You need to get the foot flattened out to check the fit.
Don’t be tempted to buy shoes that your child will “grow into”. They need to have the shoes fit and be comfortable when they try them on. Don’t think that they will “break in” their shoes. The shoes should feel good immediately.
Look for shoes with flexible soles so that they will bend with the foot.
Good Housekeeping magazine has tested some back to school sneakers. You can find the results here:
Child’s shoe Dos and Don’ts
Children’s shoes should have some sort of fasteners on them – it can be Velcro, snaps, or ties but they should fasten for the best fit
Look for a textured sole for traction. Let’s keep those kids upright as much as possible!
The souls of the shoes should be thick enough to prevent punctures but the need to be flexible.
Children’s shoes should be flat. Children’s feet still need to grow and develop. Heels on shoes do not allow for normal development.
Children’s shoes should have backs and should not be slip on shoes. These types of shoes are not as supportive as your child’s foot needs.
Children need to have breathable materials. Go for canvas or leather. Do not buy plastic shoes. They don’t allow the foot to breathe. Buy plastic shoes and you will have some smelly shoes before you know it!
Since you have some many things to check on to make sure it is the best shoe for your child, after checking out to make sure the shoes are good, let your child pick out the pattern or color of the shoe itself. After all, they are going to wear it and they need to have some fun when shoe shopping!
Are you sending your child off to kindergarten? Do they know how to tie their shoes? There are several YouTube videos that can help. Here is one:
The Foot Blogger Chick
If you have questions, don’t hesitate to send them to firstname.lastname@example.org or leave them in the comment section below. I am not a doctor but I check with one before answering questions.
Trivia Question of the week– What is the one thing that children wear out faster than shoes?
Find the answer on our Facebook page – Evanston Podiatric Surgeons – on August 9. While you’re there, please take a moment to “like” us.
Follow us on twitter – @EvPodiatric and the answer will be tweeted on Friday morning as well.
If you live or work downtown Chicago and would like to see one of the friendly podiatrists there, don’t worry! You can head over to the office on the “Magnificent Mile” in Chicago. Stop in and say “Hello”. They would love to meet you. They are really that friendly!
Mag Mile Foot and Ankle Institute
333 N. Michigan Avenue Suite 1825
Chicago, IL 60601