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Best Shoes for Metatarsus Adductus – Be Proactive and Don’t Play the Waiting Game!


Editor’s Note: This post has been updated and revised for accuracy on May 2022 and reflects an up-to-date selection of the best shoes for metatarsus adductus.

Have you noticed your child walking with the feet turned inwards instead of straight? Has your child been diagnosed with metatarsus adductus (MTA)? Metatarsus adductus is a common foot deformity that causes the front half of the child’s foot (forefoot) to turn inward.

Are you tired of being ignored by your medical professional even though you have pointed out several times that there seems to be something wrong with your child’s feet? Let me tell you that the earlier you take action, the better. I always suggest that parents take a proactive approach when it comes to treating MTA. Waiting for the condition to resolve on its own can only lead to the condition getting worse!

The main issue that children face when they walk with their feet pointing inwards is the compensation that occurs in the foot. When foot posture is not in alignment then your child’s body will have to recruit more muscles for each movement, which leads to an increase in muscle fatigue, tightness and strain.

To protect the foot and stop that compensation I recommend trying straight last and supportive shoes. Depending on the degree of your child’s foot condition we might have to try an orthotic as well, but it all starts with wearing the correct type of shoes.

My Experience Fitting Children’s Shoes 

I have helped several children treat MTA by fitting them with the correct type of shoes. For the last 10 years, I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store that focuses in helping children with foot and leg problems. Over the years I became familiar with the best shoes and orthotics for children with MTA. I have seen and helped several children with MTA walk and run straighter, and I believe I can help your child too.


I always tell parents how the correct type of shoes can make a world of difference!

I want to clarify that I am not a doctor, but I have seen several children with MTA and experienced firsthand the positive impact that the correct pair of shoes can make. Hopefully, all your child needs is a pair of well-fitted and supportive shoes to avoid a more stressful solution such as serial casting.

How to Figure Out if Your Child Has Metatarsus Adductus?

I have noticed that some of the most common signs of children with MTA are having a high arch and a wide gap between the big toe and the second toe. Tripping is also a common sign of MTA.

Let’s take a look at an image of a child with a high arch:


Let’s take a look at an image of a child with a wide gap between the big toe and second toe:


How effective the shoes can be to help treat MTA depends on your child’s age and how severe the condition is. Keep in mind that most medical professionals suggest that children with MTA don’t need treatment because the foot might straighten out as the child grows. It is a fact that in some cases the foot does straighten out as the child grows, but in some other cases, it doesn’t.

Children with MTA may require help controlling lower extremity alignment and base of support. I have noticed that children who walk and run with their feet turned inwards tend to stumble and lose balance more often.

How to Treat Children with MTA? – Be Proactive!

MTA can be flexible or nonflexible. If your child’s forefoot can be aligned, your child has flexible MTA. If it is hard to align with your hand, your child has a nonflexible, stiff foot.

In simple words, if you can straighten your child’s feet with just a little pressure with your hands, it’s highly likely that your child’s forefoot will likely improve with the correct type of shoes or even without any treatment.

As children get older, it’s more likely that they develop a nonflexible foot, which is a lot harder to treat. This is why I am always emphasizing to parents to not play the waiting game, as it just makes it harder to correct.

What Makes the Shoes I Recommend Effective for Children with MTA?

I have fitted certain shoes that provide substantial outsoles for a stable base of support at the medial arch and forefoot, as well as a firm heel counter for optimal ankle and heel support.

Straight Last: This is one of the most important features that your kids’ shoes should provide. You need to stay away from shoes that have an excessively curved last as this can exaggerate the deformity. Take a look at the image below for better visualization purposes:


✅ Substantial Outsole: This feature is going to provide a stable base of support at the medial arch and forefoot. Can you tell how the shoe on the right has a more substantial outsole compared to the shoe on the left?


✅ Firm Heel Counter: This is the part of the shoe that provides ankle and heel support. Take a look at the difference between a shoe with a soft heel counter versus a shoe with a firmer one. Always press on the heel counter of your kids’ shoes and make sure it feels firm instead of soft:


✅ Correct Amount of Flexibility: Your kids’ shoes should bend with your child’s toes. The shoes shouldn’t be too stiff or bend too much in the toe box area. If you can bend your child’s shoes like a spiral then it’s highly likely that your kids’ shoes don’t provide the correct amount of support:


Before I show you a selection of the best shoes for Metatarsus Adductus we need to figure out your child’s exact foot length and foot shape, that way you can order the shoes in the correct size.

How to Retrieve Your Child’s Exact Foot Length and Shape

It’s important to note that shoes that don’t fit properly can aggravate your child’s foot condition. If you don’t order your kids’ shoes in the correct size your child won’t get any of the benefits that the shoes have to offer.

For example, do you know whether your child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet? Do you know if your child has a high instep? If you are unsure of your child’s foot shape I strongly suggest that you start by reading the article below:

How to Measure Your Kids’ Foot – 2 Simple Steps to Determine Foot Length and Foot Width

All of the shoes I recommend below are available in different widths such as medium (M), wide (W), and extra wide (XW), so make sure that you choose your child’s shoe width accordingly.

Best Shoes for Metatarsus Adductus

How effective the shoes below will be in helping straighten your child’s forefoot and improve your child’s walking gait and overall posture directly depends on how severe your child’s MTA is. Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.

Unsure About What Shoe Size You Should Order?

In each of the descriptions of the shoes I indicate whether you need to order a half a size or a whole size bigger than your child’s foot size to provide the correct amount of growing room.

Are Any Other Shoe Choices Available?

Do not hesitate to contact me directly at my e-mail if your child has narrow feet and needs different shoe recommendations. My e-mail address is:


Shoes with shoelaces always provide better support and stability compared to shoes with velcro closure. I understand that it can be a challenge for parents to provide their children who don’t know how to tie their shoes yet with a pair of shoelaces, but trust me that they make a big difference. I suggest that you apply the following shoe lacing technique for your child to get maximum support and stability from the shoes. Even if your child is not wearing orthotics yet I suggest that you apply the following shoe lacing technique:

How to Tie Shoes with Orthotics – Stop Heel Slippage

Remember to please be proactive as children with MTA may have an increased risk for developmental dysplasia of the hip. Keep in mind that children with very rigid or severe MTA may need surgery.

I speak with parents of children with MTA frequently and some of these parents had MTA themselves and now they have to deal with terrible pain because of it. These parents are always telling me how they wish their parents did more when they were younger, but back in the day, they didn’t know how to treat it.


I created this webpage to help parents understand the importance that shoes have in healthy foot development and how they can prevent foot problems in the future.Join the rest of the parents who are taking care of their kids feet and get my guide for free: 10 Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Buying Shoes for their Kids.

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20 Comments on Best Shoes for Metatarsus Adductus – Be Proactive and Don’t Play the Waiting Game!

  1. Hi
    My 13-year-old son has a flexible metatarsus adductus. He doesn’t have a complaint now; however, you can notice the problem when he steps on his feet. He also has narrow feet. We are looking for a shoe brand and cannot decide between Brooks and New Balance. His foot number is 6.5. Can you please give us an advice?

    • Hello Gokhan,

      Since your son has narrow feet, I believe he will benefit from wearing certain shoes from Asics or Saucony instead of Brooks or New Balance. However, not all shoes from Asics or Saucony provide the correct amount of support and straight lasts. I saw that you also sent me an email so I will send you specific shoe recommendations to your email.

  2. Hi Juan,

    I think my 10 year old son has mild MTA. I haven’t seen a podiatrist yet, but I will ask for a referral from our pediatrician in 3 weeks. Is it possible for his MTA to be corrected at this age by just wearing the correct size shoes?

    • Hello Sinette,

      I am not a medical professional, but I believe that for a child who is 10 years old we can help treat the condition, not correct it. The idea is for your son to be able to perform his daily activities without any pain or discomfort.

      To help treat MTA you need to find shoes that provide supportive outsoles, firm heel counters, and straight lasts. The shoes need to be worn in the correct size in order for the child to get the full support and stability that the shoes have to offer.

      Is your son complaining about any foot or leg pain?

      • My son is autistic and non-verbal. He doesn’t understand how to communicate pain through his iPad yet, nor specify where and what type of pain he is experiencing. I notice that he often rubs his feet and would always drag his feet when he walks. His gait seems a little off. I wonder if serial casting would be effective at his age. I’m really hoping we can see the podiatrist soon so that he can give me some answers. I’m just upset that I didn’t catch this condition sooner. I will send you a separate email with pictures of his feet and measurements so that I can at least get him to wear correct shoes. 2 years ago, a former employe of a shoe store told me that my son has wide feet just by looking at it. So 2 years ago I started buying him new balance shoes with the wide width. When I got his feet measured today at a shoe store, they told me he actually is a medium width. So for the past 2 years, he has been wearing shoes too wide for his feet. Could this have contributed to his MTA? Have you ever heard or seen a child’s foot shape being affected by shoes being too wide?

        • Hello Sinette,

          The good news is that you will meet with a podiatrist soon, so hopefully you will get some answers.

          As far as shoes are concerned, wearing shoes that are too wide won’t contribute to your son’s MTA. However, wearing shoes that are too wide can lead to other complications such as compromising your child’s stability. Shoes that are too wide can also lead to blisters and other foot issues as the foot will move too much inside of the shoes. I will wait for the email with the images to confirm your son’s foot shape.

  3. Hello Juan! I just would like to ask, where can a find a shoe like on the first picture with red color?
    (My 5 years old boy has MTA, he wear the right pair of shoes on his left foot when he was smaller, but now I try to find a good shoe for him). Thanks for your answer!

  4. Hi Juan,

    I am in the UK and we have been told that my 2 year old has MTA and to get her supportive shoes. Her feet are narrow, are there any you would recommend within the UK market? Thanks

  5. what can you recommend for an adult with size 15 feet? I had this as a child, but either it never fully corrected or got worse in old age (now 58.) Now it’s bad enough that have to wear 4E or wider. The problem is that most shoes have plastic protective layer around the toe box, and of course my big toe quickly gets sore.

    • Hello Amos,

      Does the front part of your big toe rubs against the front part of the shoe?

      I usually don’t recommend shoes that I haven’t fitted before, but after doing some research online, I have found two styles that might work for your feet. The first style is available in extra wide widths and provides extra depth, and the other one is available in XX-Wide and also provides extra depth.

      Option 1

      Option 2

      I hope this helps.

  6. I am a mother of a 50 year old adult male who 5 months ago was diagnosed with MTA !! He Never had this problem as a child!!
    He is on his feet 12-15 hours a day……….has had equipment dropped on his feet, about a year ago. An exray last year showed broken toes that (they said) had not heeled !! The Orthopedic Dr diagnosed him with MTA and wanted him to be fitted for a boot. The Dr told him his metatarsal bones would keep on braking if he did not do that!!! (the boot). being 50 miles away from the Orthopedic place he has neglected to do that…plus he is totally dependant on his income to eat!!
    I am leary of this diagnosis since ev erything I read is for children!! That Dr took xrays……he should know…
    His bones stick out on the left side of his right food and it now curves……kind of like the look of the MTA in children, but, I wonder if that is just from the broken toes and metatarsal bones!!!!
    What would you suggest ?? A second opinion. WE live in a rural area and he has been to 3 drs….. it was pathetic
    The last Dr is in Cumberland MD a group of orthodedic DRs.
    This is all….. Thank you so much for this site and the chance to write you

  7. Hi Juan Pablo,

    My son is 9months old and has been diagnosed with MTA. He seem to have a flexible type of MTA too but as recommended by his doctor, during his 6th or 7th month he underwent serial casting to try correct the condition. It improved ever so slightly but still curving inwards. We stopped with the casting but was advised to just continue stretching therapy. I feel that he may need to wear shoes to help but we are finding it hard to look for the right one as he has small and narrow feet. Can you help recommend the best shoes for his case? Thanksomuch

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