Your children’s feet will spend most of their growth period in school shoes. Even if your child is not that active, they are always on the move in some way, therefore, it is important the shoes they spend the majority of their days and week in, fit well.
Finding the best school shoe that is trendy, feels great and meets the uniform requirements can be a challenge, so we’ve put together a checklist of what to look for and what you should do when buying them. What makes a good school shoe?
5 FEATURES TO LOOK FOR:
A Podiatrist can help ensure your child’s school shoes fit correctly and are appropriate for their foot type and needs. Identifying foot type is crucial in ensuring you pick the right shoe. Taking into consideration how active they are, previous or current injuries or problems and whether their foot is flat or high arched.
🏃♂️ Lightweight – pick up the shoe and feel how heavy it is, remember your child will be lifting these during the day with their legs so avoid ones too heavy.
🏃♂️ A wide toe box – look and feel if space is available for the toes at the front of the shoe.
🏃♂️ Flexibility – the shoe is an extension of the foot so has to be able to move naturally with their feet.
🏃♂️ Adjustable fastening mechanism – laces or velcro provide greater stability and support for kids feet.
🏃♂️ Removable supportive liner – for those children that may have orthotics or require more padding.
Have you noticed the following?
A check-up with a Podiatrist is especially recommended if you notice traits and/or changes such as;
Uneven shoe wear on the heels’.
If pain is reported or your child has skin rashes, hard skin, lumps, bumps or itching on their feet.
Ongoing pain in their feet or legs, especially as activities increase at school.
If your child is constantly tripping or falling and not keeping up with the other children.
Your child walks on their tip-toes.
Their walk favours one side.
You notice your child walking “inwards”, sometimes known as pigeon-toed or in-toeing.
If you child walks noticeably with feet turned outward.
What is a footwear script?
It can be a daunting task going into a shoe store and trying to remember all the recommendations your Podiatrist has made after an assessment. This is why your Podiatrist will write down a footwear prescription for you, customised for your child’s needs, which you can then take into a specific store.
Your script will include information regarding particular materials (upper and sole), perhaps to cater for a sweaty foot type or if your child is active and requiring something durable and suitable for certain terrain. The script will also highlight whether inbuilt arch control is necessary, or something stable and neutral. Of course, shoe size, width and density of heel counter and forefoot will also be considered. Your Podiatrist can recommend particular footwear styles and brands to best suit their growing footcare needs.
Important things to remember when fitting shoes
It’s important to remember that all shoes should protect your children’s feet – but particularly school shoes, since children spend so much time. It is essential to also continually monitor the fit as your child’s feet grow.
· Your child’s feet should be measured regularly for length and width
· Make sure there is about 1cm growing room between the end of their longest toe and the end of their shoe.
· All shoes should fit comfortably around the heel, and not be too loose or too tight.
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