Choosing kids’ shoes can be a challenge which is made harder given the wide variety of options on the market. You need to make sure the shoe fits properly without being too loose or too tight and that it comes with the right amount of cushioning.
The shoe should be the shape of the foot so that it is comfortable to wear and use. There has to be a great deal of flexibility offered by it along with a good amount of support. Check if the shoe only bends in the areas that the foot bends. This should be at the front of the shoe. You need to make sure there is enough cushioning in the shoes so their feet are protected against rough surfaces. There are shoes that come with a heel cushioning system ensuring feet are protected from impact.
While Velcro is a great option when it comes to putting on shoes easily, there is a time you will have to transition into laces. Velcro can be used when your children are learning to walk so they are able to put on the shoe on their own. However, it is easier to loosen or tighten shoes with laces.
There has to be sufficient heel support to ensure their foot is secure inside the shoe. Look for strong heel counters that keep the foot in place without limiting the movement of the foot. Durability is a good characteristic in children’s shoes to look for as kids can get dirty in the blink of an eye. There is a lot of rough play so the shoes should last a long time without looking beaten up. However, you need to know when to replace footwear as well. The support provided by the shoe will gradually lessen over time with wear. So it is good to elect high quality shoes.
You don’t need to break the bank to get a quality pair of shoes. As children tend to outgrow their shoes quickly, a very expensive pair will easily get smaller in a short time. Some of the areas the shoes will wear over are in the outer soles and seams. Worn out outer soles will not give sufficient grip to the shoe. And if the seams are coming loose, then the shoe is coming apart and they are not getting the right support.
Flexibility of the shoe can be tested by its ability to fold in half. Make sure you select a shoe with a wide toe box. Tapered styles can cramp growing feet. Look for lightweight shoes. If the shoe is heavy or bulky, the child will be prone to more falls and accidents. Look for shoes that mimic the barefoot experience as much as possible allowing the child’s foot to develop naturally.
Having them go barefoot now and then is also a good idea. This will help them practice their foot muscles and develop a larger range of motion. If the shoes don’t fit properly, your child will experience different issues such as calluses and foot pain.