A new year means new school shoes, and we all know you want to send your children back to school in a pair of supportive, comfortable and durable shoes that will last them the entire year.
A pair of good school shoes will not only ensure your child is comfortable each day, but they can reduce your child’s risk of injury, while also preventing tired and aching legs after a long day, and other foot problems like bunions from occurring.
It may sound complicated, but buying the right school shoes is actually super easy once you know what to look for. To help you out, we’ve put together this helpful guide of things to look for when buying the right school shoes.
Pick up the shoe and try to bend the front of it by pushing the toe upwards. We want the ball of the foot to bend but nothing further. A shoe that allows this will provide support through the mid-foot. A regular foot only bends at the ball of the foot, so therefore the shoes should only bend at this point too. This allows your child to push off with their toes while keeping the middle and back of their foot stable and well supported.
As above, shoes that don’t twist through the last will support the foot through the mid-foot. If the shoe twists, this means your child’s foot will be able to bend and twist too, so we want to ensure it only bends through the ball of the foot.
Laces or Velcro makes it easier for kids to get their foot into the shoe. It also means the shoe can be tightened onto the foot to provide additional support, reducing any heel slippage that could occur.
If your child has orthotics or will be needing orthotics to fit into the shoes, having a removable innersole gives the shoes extra depth for the orthotic to fit into.
When trying on shoes, remove the innersole and place your child's foot on the innersole while standing — this is a more accurate measurement of your child’s feet. Ensure their toes sit approximately a thumbs width from the end of the inner sole, as this allows enough wiggle room and makes sure their toes don’t bunch up at the end of the shoe.
This allows for breathability! With all the running around they do, kids shoes can get sweaty, so these natural fibres help with reducing sweaty feet, which also reduces their risk of getting ingrown toenails. Plus, it keeps the skin integrity healthy and protects against athlete’s foot.
To check if the heel counter is firm enough, give the heel counter a squeeze on both sides, if the counter is firm it won’t collapse on itself.
If you need help deciding what school shoes to get your kids, book in to see one of our podiatrists. They can complete a range of assessments and give you solid recommendations on what school shoes will be best for your child’s feet.