How will I know when my child is ready for shoes?
There is something so adorable and precious about soft squidgy feet isn’t there? It’s no wonder so many parents get a twinge of excitement at the prospect of buying their baby’s first pair of shoes and why so many go on to keep this pair as a memento. But, when is the time right to take this step and move from bare feet to shoes?
Below are five pieces of advice from the experts and if you would like to read more detailed information please head to our friends at Start-Rite Shoes.
Many of us don’t know that ill-fitting shoes can compromise the development of the foot and cause long-term damage – even into adulthood, so taking good care to get this right for your little one is very important.
Tip 1: Let children go barefoot as much as possible.
Children learn about the world around them through exploration, balance and position through all the different nerve endings in their feet and in some situations outside, children will need to protect their feet. Loosely fitting socks should be fine, but if you opt for pre-walking shoes they must be completely flat with a little grip, soft, flexible and roomy at the forefoot so the little developing foot isn’t hindered at all.
Tip 2: Introduce first shoes when the time is right.
Once children are exploring further outside, moving faster, and especially mastering jumping it’s time. These will feel different, stronger and sturdier to the child and most likely will enable them to feel more confident in going fast
Tip 3: Quality shoes do matter.
Quality shoes will come in multi-width fittings plus small enough increments in size to enable a precision fit that allows for growing room and provides just the right amount of support to enable to foot to develop healthily.
Tip 4: Buy shoes your child likes.
A child will love the comfort and confidence a pair of shoes gives them, so if they are constantly taking them off, look for signs such as redness or rub. Perhaps they are tripping more often or bumping into things? These are all signs that the shoes aren’t fit for purpose.
Tip 5: Have regular refits.
When your child is in first shoes, start by having their feet checked every six to eight weeks, then every two to three months. The growth usually slows down so, once they are around school age, checks could be every three to four months.
This is a guest post from Start-Rite.