Lockdown has been tough for parents, and most of us have discovered that our kids have outgrown something during their time out of school. You might not be surprised to discover that two thirds of all children are wearing shoes that are too small!
Blitzresults conducted a study and found that 67% of all kids are wearing shoes that are too small. Of these, 48% are one size too small and 19% are even two. Only 33% are wearing the correct size and only 10% of those have “room to grow”.
Improperly fitting shoes can cause hallux valgus. This is a foot deformity, it happens when the big toe starts to angle inward, which causes a swollen lump just below the big toe. A study conducted by the National Health Institute found that almost 30% of children had irreversible foot deformities, like hallux valgus.
To help parents make sure they are buying shoes that fit their kids properly, keep the following advice in mind:
- Go by the longer foot: The right and left foot are rarely the same length. A difference of up to half an inch is normal, that’s almost one whole shoe size. Therefore, parents should always go by the longer foot when buying shoes.
- Don’t rely on the shoe size: Shoe manufacturers label shoes with standard sizes, the ones we all know. But, there is no mandatory industry standard for shoe sizing, so each brand will vary. Be sure to try on every shoe carefully.
- Give ‘em room: Most parents are aware that feet need some room, but usually underestimate the actual room needed. At least ½ inch of additional room is optimal, it’s the only way kids can roll their foot properly when walking.
- Do a regular check: Tim Lilling, expert at blitzresults.com, tells us that, “Because the sense of touch isn’t fully developed in children yet, they have a tendency to squeeze their feet into shoes that are much too small, they don’t even notice it. Therefore, parents must measure their children’s feet every 2 months.” A measuring guide, useful conversion tools and a lot of information on how to choose shoes with the perfect fit can be found here.