Every parent we have ever met wants to have a smart child and be a smart parent. Raising a child is the most important responsibility anyone will ever have and can provide the most pleasure and reward.

SMART PARENT/SMART CHILD is the revolutionary philosophy that all children are incredibly intelligent from the moment they are born. When parents have learned understanding, respect, highly developed communication and relationship skills and development related expertise, it is amazing what a child can accomplish and, in fact, each child will achieve his maximum potential.

Our mission is to help you achieve that goal. The key to a child's education and success is a skilled, knowledgeable, informed and educated parent.

This blog addresses specific issues, to really be the best parent possible the book is a must!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Hand Me Down Shoes? Please Don’t!

Mary, David, Sam and Judy are the most recent children in the last year who have found themselves dropping out of outside playtime because their feet were hurting so much they didn’t want to even walk, much less run and play.

The outdoor heat and harder surfaces are much less forgiving, so the most discomfort I see typically occurs outdoors.

What did they all have in common? Each of them was wearing hand me down shoes at those moments.

There has been a huge cultural shift in how parents acquire shoes for their children. It used to be an unwritten responsibility of a parent to take their child to a store that specialized in children’s shoes where they would have their child’s feet measured and then purchase shoes that accommodated their child’s specific needs.

What we see now is that shoes are ordered online. At best, an outline of the child’s foot is provided, or the worst case scenario by guesswork. The other option is the child wearing hand me downs from friends or a resale store.

We realize that providing clothing for a child is a very expensive responsibility, however there are multiple solutions including discount stores, sales evens, resale stores and hand me downs.  All of these options are fine except for their footwear needs. You child should never wear hand me down shoes.

There are no two children who have exactly the same body structure and the same exact way of placing their feet on a solid surface, and handling the weight and rhythm of their body.

A few facts are extremely important.
     1. Their shoes need to be long and wide enough to accommodate the current size of their foot with a reasonable amount of space for growth. In the first three years of their life that could be from three to five months.

     2. They must provide proper support for their current needs.

     3. They must not have been previously worn and molded by someone else’s foots structure and walking style. This condition will force your child’s foot to adapt to the inner and outer shape of the shoe rather than their natural one.

We are repeated observing situations caused by poorly fitting footwear:

- Tripping if the footwear is too large or small.
- Limping because their footwear hurts.
- Developing an unbalanced walk as the result of the condition of their used footwear.
- Trying to ease the discomfort of a poorly fitting shoe by pushing their foot to the outside of the shoe and probably turning in at the same time.
-Showing signs of being flat footed because their feet are not being properly supported.
-Showing signs of weak ankles that are being overlooked and not supported and corrected.

The health of your child’s feet can have an impact on their entire body structure and should be a priority.


-Prioritize your child’s footwear from the time they are developed enough to be showing signs of early walking

-Check the size and fir of their footwear after three months. Their feet usually grow before you feel they need a new clothing size.

- Pay attention to the way your child walks! If they are walking as though their feet hurt, it is more likely a footwear problem than an injury.

-Make sure your child’s shoes have adequate support. We have had several children over the years (More than I would have thought) who required arch support. Whenever possible, let you child walk in their bare feet. It can be indoors or a safe outdoor area where they will not be injured, this will allow their foot muscles to strengthen and find their natural pattern.

-Find a store that specializes in children’s shoes where the sales staff is well trained. When you are investing in your first purchases they will give you good advice regarding what manufacturers are making footwear that is appropriate for your children. Then you can balance online shopping with store shopping.

-Try to have your child with you as often as possible when you are changing their sizes.

Do not:

-Short change your child with ill-fitting footwear ever! It can cause damage to their feet at a very early age!

-Expect your child to continue to wear footwear that is not fitting well.

-Poorly fitting footwear will shape your child’s feet and how they walk for the rest of their life!

I realize raising a child is a very expensive proposition and everyone is trying to control costs all the time! But please plan to save money on all their other needs but get them the most appropriate footwear every time! We have another great post on the importance of children's footwear!

No comments:

Post a Comment