When buying shoes for your child there are a few things to consider. In this post I’m talking about shoes they are going to wear the majority of the time. Those special occasion shoes don’t fit into this category!
You want to have your child try on the shoe to make sure it fits. If they use inserts or braces on their feet, make sure you have the braces/inserts with you so that you get the best fit. Sometimes you have to take the insole out to give a better fit.
Beware of big toe boxes on shoes. This can cause your child to turn their toes in more (if they tend towards this pattern already), and it can also increase tripping. If you watch your child walk and they don’t seem to have any problems then this is not something you have to worry about. Just be warned that walking on a flat surface usually found in the shoe store can look very different than walking over uneven terrain such as grass or sand and your child’s walking may change. This is why its always a good idea to make sure the shoe store you buy from has a good return policy!
Make sure there isn’t a lot of space on the sides of the shoe where your child’s foot can wiggle. This creates instability especially for those kids who are low tone or have some difficulties with walking. You may need to ask your shoe store if there are shoes that come in narrow sizes so they have a snug fit all around. It makes it that much more difficult to maintain balance and form if you have to carry a shoe around but your foot can’t stay stable in the shoe.
Look at the weight of the shoe. Some shoes are heavier than others and this can be a good thing but you need to see how your child responds to it. You can also find nice sturdy light weight shoes too if your child can’t handle the weight of a heavier shoe. If you aren’t sure and you don’t feel like you can tell when you watch your child try it on, see if you can get both pairs and have your physical therapist look at how they are walking and give you input. You may also want to ask their opinion before you go shopping because they may be able to steer you towards brands and styles that they have experience with and know will work well with your child.
Just a few things to consider when buying your child’s shoes! Of course I didn’t even cover personal preferences such as color and light up and such!