We all love how cute kid shoes are, they are just so small and adorable! But, are they doing more damage then good?
Yes they are.
A stiff soled shoe forces the crawling child to progress with a "toe in" or "toe out" gait pattern and may delay the onset of walking for weeks.
A stiff soled shoe may also increase the torsional deformity in the walking child. Whenever possible the use of shoes should be discouraged as barefoot activity strengthens the foot and encourages a natural, healthy gait.
The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery surveyed 2300 children on the influence of footwear on the prevalence of flat foot (which can lead to many issues in the foot, ankle, knee and hip) and their conclusion was "Shoes have been shown to inhibit the development of a functional medial longitudinal arch, the use of stiff shoes and sneakers should be avoided and barefoot walking should be encouraged."
So free those little piggies, let your kiddos go shoe-free and enjoy the world BAREFOOT!
Any questions? Give me a call, shoot an email, or stop on by.
(2nd photo cred to Dr. Conley at Gait Happens)