Back-to-school; a podiatrist’s guide on buying children’s shoes.

Back-to-school; a podiatrist’s guide on buying children’s shoes.

Buying children’s shoes can be a challenge! They can sometimes wear out their shoes in 6 weeks, grow out of them in one school term, or even lose them! With these following tips hopefully you can buy the appropriate shoe and get the wear and growth that is expected!

Buying children’s shoes can be a challenge! They can sometimes wear out their shoes in 6 weeks, grow out of them in one school term, or even lose them! With these following tips hopefully you can buy the appropriate shoe and get the wear and growth that is expected!

What to look for when buying a shoe:

1. Firm heel counter

2. Breathable leather-upper or mesh-upper material

3. Flexible toe box; no flex should be in the mid or rear portion of the shoe’s outsole!

4. Lace or Velcro

5. EVA midsole

6. Non-marking/ non-slip outsole

Cross-Trainer, Running Shoe, Court Shoe or Casual Shoe – what do I purchase?

It depends on what the shoe will be used for… For example, a cross-trainer is usually a leather-upper, durable sports shoe for multiple activities; running, court sports, general PE and everyday wear.A court shoe is for tennis, netball, basketball and general court sports. However, it is the most durable shoe on the market and because of this is a popular option for a school shoe or PE. A running shoe is usually the lightest (mesh-upper) and most comfortable shoe (and the brightest for those kids seeking the extra wow-factor). It is appropriate for walking,running and athletics and forward-motion sports. Beware; it will wear out a lot faster if worn as a tennis shoe or netball shoe!


Rules of the fit:

1. One thumb width between the end of longest toe and the end of the shoe (should be tested during stance NOT sitting)

2. Correct width in rearfoot, midfoot and forefoot – no gaping and no buldging

3. Ask your child if they feel comfy! They’re the best judge of ‘feel’

Do I get a supportive shoe or neutral shoe?

Some shoes are available with added support through ‘the arch’, but it honestly depends on your child’s foot type to know whether they need the added support of not – check with your podiatrist before purchase. If an orthotic is to be fitted into the shoe, go a NEUTRAL option.

Expected growth at different ages:

There is no right or wrong here! It varies with every child. Growth occurs most rapidly in the first year of their life. In all, children’s feet grow very quickly between birth and 15 years old (sometimes older!) and their shoe size may need updating every few months.

 

Tips for extended shoe life

– teach you child to unlace their shoes after wear, and not to simply slip them off! This extends the contour of the heel counter.

– clean with a damp cloth and soapy water

– choose a shoe for the correct purpose (court shoe for court sports)

-the more expensive the shoe, the better the quality. Aim for $50-$90…

 

For more information on this article or to book an appointment with our Podiatrist call (08) 8232 2268

Leave a Reply

Close Menu