As the summer nights start to cool and Labor Day is nearing, it must mean school is quickly approaching. This means it’s time for parents to find those back-to-school shopping deals and get their student ready for a great year. One of the most important purchases to make is a new pair of shoes. They must fit correctly, stay within the budget and most importantly (for the student) look cool.
When choosing shoes it is important to keep many factors in mind, as not all shoes are created equal. It is important to bring your child with you when buying their shoes. Every shoe fits differently and letting them have a say in what shoe they wear promotes healthy foot habits. Depending on their age and growth rate, sock and shoe sizes can change every few months. Again, having them with you will allow for the correct size to be purchased. A shoe that does not fit properly can aggravate the feet. This can cause irritation and lead to problems such as bunions and ulcers. It is an excellent idea to measure your child’s feet before buying and watch for signs of pain when trying on different styles. Buying shoes that do not need a “break-in” period is important. Shoes are now constructed to be comfortable immediately. Children rarely have the exact same size foot so make sure to buy for the larger foot. Handing down footwear from one child to another is not a good practice. Just because a shoe size fits one child doesn’t mean it with fit another. Sharing shoes can spread fungi like athlete’s foot and nail fungus.
Once you and your child have selected a shoe, apply this quick three step test. This test is designed to make sure the shoe will bend with the foot in the correct way. First, look for a stiff heel. Press on both sides of the heel counter and make sure it doesn’t collapse. Next, check the toe flexibility. The shoe should bend with your child’s toes not being overly flexible or stiff. Lastly select a shoe with a rigid middle. Using two hands grasp the toe and heal area attempting to twist the shoe, twisting is a bad sign. If the shoe fails one of these steps, try a different model.