Once Frankie started walking and it was time to get him real walking shoes, I had absolutely NO idea what the proper shoe was and after hours of doing research I finally got him a pair of shoes and hoped they were good for him. Guest blogger Maya Pande of the Pande Family Wellness Centre, has provided amazing information for all you moms and dads out there looking for shoes:
Baby shoes are so cute! Those little sneakers, and construction boots, and don’t forget the sparkly girls shoes! But how do you know if that cute shoe is the BEST one for your baby’s first shoe? And when do you start putting shoes on them?
Shoes for Infants?
It’s better if babies go shoeless until they start to walk. Socks or booties are enough until the weather gets cold. When it does get colder, a snow suit, booties and a couple of blankets tucked around them is enough to keep them warm.
Baby’s First Shoes:
Babies start to walk around the age of 10 to 18 months. Every child has a different start time; even siblings. Barefoot is best when a child starts to walk (indoors, of course!). Walking barefoot or in ‘grippy’ socks helps their foot muscles get strong and teaches them how to move and grasp their toes, which is very important for balance and security. Gently tickling and massaging the feet increases their dexterity and strength. As does walking on the sand. What a great excuse for a beach vacation!
When you’re outside, put them in lightweight, flexible, soft soled shoes. Winter boots should also be lightweight and flexible, with a rubber sole. Avoid clunky baby shoes like construction boots
Can I use hand-me-down shoes?
I never advise parents to use second hand shoes. Babies have fewer bones than adults so their feet can be easily squeezed into a bad fitting hand-me-down shoe. Because of the extra layer of baby fat they have on their feet, they won’t feel any pain from the shoe and won’t complain, so there’s no way of knowing if you’ve got the right size or not. For this reason, it’s very important to get your child professionally fitted for shoes at a child’s shoe store from the beginning and to re-size them every 2-4 months.
Using the wrong shoes or putting them in baby shoes too early can affect their pelvis and spine causing them to have problems walking or even with sports as they get older. Making sure they have the right pair of ‘first shoes’ can help your children get off on the right foot.
*Dr. Maya Pande is a gentle chiropractor who focuses on moms, children and moms to be. She practices in Toronto, ON. For more information, go to www.pandechiropractic.ca
I hope you find this information as useful as I did