When It’s time for a visit to the shoe shop to get new shoes for the start of the school year. Before you go, remember these facts:

Children spend around 1500 hours a year in their school shoes so its very important to provide them with a shoe that is both supportive and cushioning to handle the various activities that your child will be doing in them.

It is wise to get your child’s feet measured when buying shoes to ensure that their shoes fit properly and will allow for all the activities they plan to do. It is particularly important to make sure there is enough room at the toe of the shoe to allow your child’s toes to move freely without being squashed from either the sides or above. Also, it is wise to allow around a 1cm space between the end of their longest toe and the end of the shoe. This will give them time and room to grow into the shoe rather than growing out of them too quickly. Also make sure that the shoe fits well around the heels to prevent slippage and future blisters.

When looking at the shoe on the shelf, place your thumb and second finger either side of the heel counter at the back of the shoe. Press your fingers towards each other. If the heel counter collapses, then this is not a good shoe. A strong heel counter is important for supporting the rear foot and preventing excessive rolling in or pronation. The shoe should bend slightly at the ball of the foot area to allow easy forward transition of the body weight at toe off. Also check that the upper is free of stitching or rough areas inside the shoe lining over the toe areas of the shoes to prevent blisters and corns on your child’s toes. Where possible, try and avoid shoes made from mostly synthetic materials as those little feet sweat more when your child is busy playing and running around the school yard. Bacteria is more likely to be present in moist, warm areas which is what creates those smelly shoes!

If you are unable to get your child fitted before purchasing their shoes and your child starts to complain about painful feet, sore toes, rough or itchy areas of skin, bumps on their heels or you notice they are limping, tripping or wearing the soles of the shoes in an unusual way, then it is a good idea to ring Armadale Podiatry for a consultation to prevent further and more serious problems developing with your child’s feet.

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