FAQ - Frequently asked questions when choosing shoes for kids
When to buy your baby's first shoes?
At Bosa Stópka, we always advise parents who ask when the first shoes for a child should be: "the later the better". Learning to walk should be barefoot. This allows the foot to move naturally and strengthen muscles. The time for the first baby shoes comes when barefoot walking is no longer possible. Most often, when the weather conditions are not conducive to it or the surface and circumstances are not suitable for it, the toddler begins to take his first steps without support. As long as the toddler is crawling, it is worth protecting his feet against cold or moisture by using socks, flexible slippers for children or waterproof shoes covers.
The first shoes for a child must be a well-thought-out purchase. Baby's feet are very delicate. A healthy child should be taught to walk barefoot so that nothing interferes with the natural movements of the foot. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, each, not only the first shoes for a toddler, should meet the requirements imposed on "bare" shoes, such as:
Preferably a company that produces shoes with the barefoot principle. Such shoes in our store receive a special label - "100% barefoot", which means that they meet all the requirements imposed by the American Academy of Pediatrics. In order to offer a wide range of children's shoes, Barefoot has introduced less barefoot shoes, but those that, compared to classic children's shoes, are still much more flexible, light, and their careful workmanship and appropriate materials ensure the comfort of small feet.
It is worth buying your first baby shoes from a store that offers barefoot shoes for children, i.e. those that meet the requirements of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Such children's shoes do not limit the natural development of the child's foot, they are flexible, with a completely flat sole, made of natural materials. If there is no such store in your area, it is worth buying baby shoes online. If you have doubts about how to do it, read our guide, where we will tell you step by step how to fit and choose children's shoes in our store.
Only humans have mastered the ability to walk on two legs among all mammals. Primitive people did not wear shoes - they walked and ran barefoot. Children should be taught to walk barefoot, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, among others, but it is not always possible and comfortable.
Comfortable - this is what a pair of walking shoes should be like. Your baby cannot feel pressured or uncomfortable in walking shoes. The child should not want to take off the shoes they are wearing. It is good if they do not feel the big difference between walking barefoot and walking in walking shoes. It is important for a child's development that the foot can work naturally in walking shoes. The right choice are barefoot shoes - barefoot, which as closely as possible reflect feelings similar to those during walking barefoot. Thanks to this, children's feet will have complete freedom of movement and will be able to grow strong as naturally as possible.
It is important that shoes for a child who walks independently still allow their feet to move freely, undisturbed. The feet should work as if they were barefoot not only in the first years of life, but also later, when the toddler uses the shoes outside more often. Baby barefoot shoes will not contribute to abnormal gait or posture patterns. As early as 1991, this was pointed out by the American Academy of Pediatrics, which issued guidelines for children's footwear.
How to choose the size of shoes for a child?
In order to choose the correct size of shoes for a child, its feet should be correctly measured. On our website you will find several ways to effectively measure your child's feet. Also, be sure to add adequate ‘wiggle room’ so that children's shoes are slightly larger than his feet. Just as important as the length of the foot is its width and type. It's worth taking a look at your toddler's feet and see if they are plump, narrow, normal, or with a high arch.
The sizing of children's shoes may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. This is why you should measure your foot properly before buying baby shoes. We should never buy shoes tight fit but also remember to add adequate ‘wiggle room’. In addition to length, let's also take into account, among others, the width and type of the foot - whether the foot is, for example, slim, plump, or has a high arch.
Slippers or soft soleecotuppies are another term for soft slippers for children. If you are looking for slippers for a child, at Bosa Stópka you will find flexible models with a completely flat sole along the entire length that meet the requirements imposed by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Soft SoleEkoTuptusie are kids slip onchildren's slippers without velcroproduced by the Polish company Fiorino. They have been tested by many children, which is why they were appreciated by their parents. They work well as slippers for home, kindergarten or nursery. They are suitable for most children, and babies who are crawling or just starting to take their first steps, can also wear them outside on warm and dry days.
Not all children are eager to try new things, and tying children's shoes can be a real challenge for the little ones. There are different methods - poems, learning on shoes that are cut out of cardboard together, associations with various animals. However, nothing will encourage kids to learn more than independence. It's worth taking advantage of this approach. So how to get started? From completely independent putting on your shoes. Then it is worth considering children's Velcro-fastened shoes. The current technology allows them to be made in such a way that they ensure a good fit and at the same time are easy to put on. This is a great introduction to learning how to dress shoes by yourself and then tying them with laces.
Can baby shoes make him gait abnormally?
American athlete Jessi Stensland says, "From the moment children put on their shoes, they walk badly." Jessi Stensland explains that the foot is designed to process an enormous amount of sensory data and is designed to move in a variety of complex ways. When you place an 18-month-old baby in a supportive shoe, you deprive them of the ability to use their feet properly, potentially for the rest of their lives. Caleb Wegener, Adrienne E Hunt, Benedicte Vanwanseele, Joshua Burns and Richard M. Smith are the authors of another interesting scientific publication entitled "Effect of children's shoes on gait: a systematic review and meta-analysis" which confirms that inappropriate children's shoes can change a child's gait. A significant finding was that wearing the shoes reduced the movement of the inner muscles of the foot, possibly contributing to weakness in those muscles. In fact, eight of the nine ranges of movement variables that measure foot movement were reduced in shoe wearers compared to the control group. That is why it is so important to give the child the opportunity to learn to walk barefoot, and when we have to put on shoes, the ones that restrict the feet as little as possible and work on the basis of the barefoot model. Because a child's foot ossifies up to around 8 years of age, and develops up to approx 18 years not only the first but each subsequent shoes affect the development of the child's feet.
Can children's shoes restrict the movements of his feet?
Blocky children's shoes with inflexible soles act as a corset for a toddler's feet. Wearing such a corset for many hours a day can contribute to deformation of the feet, just as a regular corset deforms the ribs and internal organs. When walking on the feet, the weight of the entire body is transferred. In improperly selected children's shoes, this is not possible. The appropriate width, flexibility and weight of shoes are necessary for the formation of correct gait and posture patterns.
Can children's shoes restrict the natural movement of the toes?
Dr. William Rossi, a podologist, took the position that toes that are left untrained become unformed outgrowths. A should be agile and strong fingers with gripping abilities. He described it in his article. The fingers should have enough space to work freely. That is why children's shoes can be neither too small nor too large, and sufficiently wide at the front so that there is enough space for the free work of the toes.
Should kids shoes have a profiled insole?
The soles of the feet in children are practically flat, but it is a physiological condition. The use of profiled insoles in children's shoes may be counter productive. When they support the arch of the sole, the toe gets used to this position. When we remove the shoes from the legs, the feet, used to being supported on the entire sole, will seek this support. Scientists have shown that children who wear shoes are more likely to develop persistent flat feet *. You can read about it here.
*Flat feet in children is a natural condition and may persist until the age of 5.
Should children's shoes have a stiff heel counter?
Should children's shoes have a sole that is only flexible at one point?
Appropriate children's footwear should allow the foot to move almost as if walking barefoot. This is what the American Academy of Pediatrics points out. Children's feet are largely made of cartilage. They ossify until around the age of 8, which is why they are more delicate than adult feet, and therefore prone to deformation. Feet will develop properly if properly stimulated. This is what happens when the child walks barefoot. The sole is a basic element of both children's and adult shoes, when it is too stiff, the foot cannot move like it would when barefoot. For the feet to develop naturally, the shoes should not restrict their movements and the reception of external stimuli. For this reason, the sole of a child's shoe should be flexible not only up and down, but also to the sides.
Should children's shoes be equipped with a shock-absorbing sole or insole?
The feet of young healthy children will be able to develop properly if nothing interferes with this development. The American Academy of Pediatrics points out that the function of children's shoes is to protect against cuts and possible infections. Referring also to other scientific studies, there is insufficient evidence that profiling inserts affect the disappearance of physiological flat feet (which is natural up to about 5 years of age). We are convinced that healthy children's feet will do the best when left to themselves. The feet should be stimulated to grow stronger. If we start to amortize them, we do not allow them to develop a natural force adequate to the child's body weight.
Can children's shoes be slightly raised on the heels (have a heel)?
Dr. William Rossi in his article points out that even low heels can cause abnormal gait patterns in children. It leads to posture disorders and disrupts the natural balance. Feet on which shoes with a heel, wedge or platform are put on will in the future show anatomical and functional abnormalities - like a young tree planted on a slope, it grows crookedly. No child should wear shoes on a platform. However, this fact is eluded both by doctors and manufacturers of children's shoes.
Can kids shoes cause deformation of the feet and affect the mental development of a child after prolonged walking?
The foot has a complex structure. It has 200,000 nerve endings only on its underside (roughly the same as the length of the entire spine). In addition, there are 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments in the foot and ankle. Changing the movement of this complex network of structures would cause a wave of changes not only in the feet, but throughout the body. Scientists say that since one foot has more than 200,000 nerve endings, the feet must be involved in creating new nerve connections. Therefore, it is important to stimulate the toddler's feet on various types of textures (mud, grass, sand, etc.), and experiencing the surrounding world with the feet contributes to the intellectual development of children.