Could it be that one part of a child’s development is overlooked by most parents or perhaps it is noticed, but not thought of as a great concern? Shoes with a proper fit are of utmost importance for a growing child. With all the children’s footwear trends and types, how does one determine what is best for his/her child?
First, parents need to get educated about kids’ footwear, and the important role that shoes play in kids having foot problems when they become adults, as most of these problems originate in childhood. Adults who know the pain of calluses, ingrown toenails, foot corns, bunions and hammertoes would appreciate that parents should be armed with this data.
What is more, the ultimate point is to make sure that a child’s shoe is properly fit for his/her foot. This should only be done by someone that has been trained well for fitting shoes on young children who are rapidly growing. A good rule of thumb for beginning to wear shoes is a need for them.
Usually, only booties are needed until the toddler starts walking well alone, but some parents use baby shoes for decoration. As long as the baby’s feet are free to move without restriction, and the feet are warm in cool weather, it is fine. Remember that the main reason shoes are worn at all is to prevent injury.
In any case, a baby one and a half years old will grow half a foot size about every two months. At that age upward to two years it stretches every three months or so. Two to three years old will grow by half a foot size about every four months. Once kids are three years and up, about every half a year they can increase half a foot size.
Indeed, children’s footwear trends and types change almost as fast as their feet do. Be careful in making sure that the fit is accurate, and use the proper type of shoe that is age appropriate.
That said, many kinds of shoes do not fit small feet well. Caretakers squeeze little chubby toes into cute dress shoes for feet that have never stood on their own yet. That same parent may freak out if the child had a pair of eyeglasses on his face that looked good, but he/she could not see well out of them.
In fact, look at how shoes are made for children. There are four parts of that any shoe is made of: the upper, insole, outer sole and the heel. Materials used today with mesh, canvas or leather are ideal. Materials that breathe are a must, as kids feet do sweat a lot.
Likewise, material that absorbs is needed, and padded shoes are really comfy. No need for arch supports because tots have flat feet and do not gain an arch till they are about seven years old. Beware of thick outsoles because they can make walking inept enough to cause a fall. Heels aren’t for children until they are older, but not over an inch.
In addition, most children need wide width shoes, and males wear E size with most females needing a D width. Moreover, the depth of the shoe needs to not press on the top of the foot or toes anywhere. Choose a rounded toe for comfort in the ability to move the toes inside the shoe, but not too much, as the foot can cramp toes in the shoe.
The latest collection of children’s footwear for boys and girls from toddlers to teen:
- Moccasins are comfy shoes for infants, and they are cute. They slide on with easy tab at the heel and are made of leather.
- Ballerina Slippers are a traditional shoes made of polyurethane with bows on the top.
- Casual Sneakers slip-on style canvas ordinarily have leather soles. Come in high tops, low cut, and a delightful array of colors and designs.
- Sandals are made in many different styles with an open toe, open heel and round toes with rounded edges to prevent falls. They come in leather and many cheaper versions.
- Casual Dress Shoes come with delicate cut-out details, they can be shiny, and leather with a rubber sole is common as are classic Mary Janes and Ballet shoes for girls. Boys can find dress shoes that can make them look like little men. The Classic Oxford in the big guy’s collection are now available for boys. The Penny Loafer is another.
- Boots come in many styles and various heights, such as ankles, mid-calf and knee. Leather is a popular material, and boots can slide on or have buckles, laces and snaps.
Basic education about children shoes is a must for every parent. Taking care of the materials and types is very important. It is also essential to understand how poor fitting shoes in childhood can cause painful problems later in life.