August 02, 2019

FIRST SHOES - WHAT TO LOOK FOR.

We asked Paul Thompson, The Barefoot Podiatrist/The Barefoot Movement, what are the most important things a parent needs to look for in a first pair of shoes?

Here's what he had to say. 

 

5 THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN A FIRST PAIR OF SHOES. 

As parents we all want to know that we are doing everything we can to raise the happiest and healthiest kids possible. With such conflicting marketing out there...sometimes that feels easier said than done, especially when it comes to buying footwear.

Children can be in shoes close to 3000 hours per year, so it is essential that we must get their footwear right in order to build feet that support our children and their activities.

With that in mind the top 5 features I look for in shoes to help keep young feet growing and developing as naturally as possible are :

 

  • FLAT  Avoid a heel raise. Many shoes have a hidden 1-2 cm raised heel built in. 

 

  • FLOPPY – Not too rigid through the sole of the shoe

 

  • WIDE AROUND THE TOES  Check by pulling the insole out, (if you can) making sure it matches the shape of the natural foot in a standing position. 

 

  • UNCUSHIONED – Remember the body is able to adapt to different surfaces and absorb shock. Cushioning can alter natural feedback.

 

  • KEEP THE TOES FLAT Try and find shoes that are flat under the toes and do not have what is referred to as toe spring. Ensure the toes to sit flat on the ground. If the shoe curls up at the end (when the foot is in the shoe), it can change the natural function of gait and posture.

 

As much as I believe our kids are best left out of shoes as much as possible, I also understand that there are times when footwear is a necessity for safety or where socially required. When our children do require footwear, Look for shoes such as PaperKrane footwear that allow for natural function and movement for healthy growth and development.