Big Baby Steps – Choosing The Right Baby Shoes

by Louise Pearce Hogan,

Is your baby crawling or cruising?

In a blink of an eye they will be up and wobbling from one place to the next and your heart will be in your mouth!

It’s time to think about some kind of shoes, especially if you have wooden floors and tiles as these can be extremely hazardous in socks!.

We all know that bare foot is best; however it’s just not practical most of the time. Professionals such as Paediatricians, podiatrists and Chiropractors alike all recommend shoes with a very flexible soft sole should be worn by babies when beginning to walk up until they are steady on their feet and able to walk unaided.

The reason for this is that babies have soft pliable bones in their feet and if these are restricted they won?t form properly.

The soft soles on the shoes allow the child to gain their own balance and posture naturally as they grip and steady themselves allowing healthy development of the bones and muscles in the feet and legs.

Typically these types of shoes have a lovely wide fit, are made from a breathable material and are so light the baby will hardly notice they have shoes on.

Shoes with hard soles don?t allow this and the child can be pushed into a false posture which, can affect the development of the foot and leg muscles and intern have other postural knock on effects. These harder heavier shoes too early in the learning to walk period take a lot of getting used to so best to master the latter first.


Choosing Pre-walker

Choose one with fabric or leather, a breathable material that will be soft and comfortable and allow feet to be warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

Pick a brand that has a non-slip / anti-skid sole. Some brands have a suede or leather sole but so thin and soft it’s as good as bare feet.

Preferably choose a brand that has elasticated ankles so they don?t pull them off and they fit comfortably. All babies are different so this allows it to fit snugly but gently around their little leg.

Measure your baby’s foot heel to toe while their foot is on the ground/standing so it’s spread out flat. Add 1 centimetre for room at the top of your measurement to allow room to wiggle and grow. Then revert to the size guide of the chosen brand and find your size. take care the shoe isn?t too big and roomy at the front as this could cause your baby to trip and hurt themselves, which can lead to a loss of confidence. Re Measure your babies feet around every 6-8 weeks

Don?t spend a fortune! These are indoor only shoes which your baby will crawl drag along the floor, possibly chew and undoubtedly will grow out of in 6 weeks. You can buy soft leather baby shoes at for ?15.95 . A valuable investment as they learn to walk.

Once your child has mastered the art of walking in the soft shoes for a couple of weeks you can consider harder outdoor shoes.

Have your Child’s new shoes fitted in a shop by a member of the fitting team each time you visit for new shoes and re measure your baby’s feet around every 6-8 weeks.

I tried to minimise the time my children wore the hard shoes by taking them off once we got back to the house and wore the soft soled ones indoors to give the feet a rest- we did that up to the age of 3 wearing SHOOBEES as slippers!

SHOOBEES Baby Shoes are available from 0-6, 6-12, 12-18, 18-24 months (UK 0-7) at ?15.95 and at Selected Mothercare Ireland Stores