Best Shoes For Orthotic Inserts- Don’t Ignore Your Children Feet Or Leg Pain!

The best Orthotics For Kids

Is your child suffering from foot or leg pain? I have been working at a specialized children’s shoe store for almost 6 years now, and we evaluate children with foot issues on a daily basis. These children are often referred by their pediatrician or physical therapist to be fitted in the right pair of shoes and orthoticsHas your child been diagnosed with flat feet and has been complaining about foot or leg pain? Has he been pronating or toe walking?

If this is the case with your child, then he or she might be a candidate for wearing orthotics. Keep in mind that we all have a certain degree of pronation or supination. However, when pronation or supination becomes excessive, children might start complaining about their feet and legs hurting.  How can you tell if your child is pronating excessively?

Make sure your child is standing straight and observe his feet and legs from the back. If your child’s feet lean inward or appear flat, these can be signs that your child is experiencing pronation.

Another way is to look at how the shoes are wearing. The picture below shows a shoe on the left that has been worn by a child that has been pronating, and on the right a shoe that has never been worn (keep in mind that these are the same shoes in the same sizes). Do you notice how the left shoe is caving inwards? That means your child has been pronating!

Kids Shoes Pronation

Let’s take a look at the most common causes of why a child might need orthotics:

  1. Pronation: this occurs when the arch collapses and the foot rolls inward excessively.
  2. Supination: this occurs when the foot leans to the outside.
  3. Sensory and stability issues: these occur among children who have low-muscle tone, tight cords,or severe toe-in.
  4. Foot pain: this occurs among children that might be experiencing cramping in the foot, leg, and knee.
  5. Feet and legs feeling tired: this occurs among children who are involved in physical activities.

All of these causes are believed to be genetics or hereditary.  Don’t panic! It’s common, and there are things you can do to help your child walk and run straight, and  prevent him from having feet, leg or back pain.

Orthotics and good supportive shoes are one of the best solutions to your children’s foot problems. It will always depend on how severe your child might be pronating to figure out whether your child might need orthotics, or just a good supportive shoe.

Has your child been complaining about having pain on the bottom or the top part of his foot? Keep in mind that just because your child is having pain, that doesn’t automatically translates into him needing orthotics.

Our Kids’ Feet Act As Shock Absorbers- Sometimes They Need Help!

Our feet are our body’s first shock absorbers since they help the body by absorbing impact and responding to uneven surfaces. When we are pronating or supinating excessively, the body’s natural shock absorbing capability reduces considerably.

Providing our children with good supportive shoes and orthotics will help them minimize the impact that their feet and legs take every time they impact against the ground!

Kids Orthotic Insoles

What Are The Benefits Of Wearing An Orthotic?

  • They will provide bio-mechanical balance by  redistributing body weight.
  • They will not only improve and correct your child’s foot position, but they will also affect the alignment of the ankles, knees, hips, and the low back, because everything is connected together in a bio-mechanical chain.
  • They will provide cushioning, support, stability, and/or relief to pressure areas of the foot.
  • They will provide relief to those muscles that are over working.
  • They will absorb the shock of each step that your child takes rather than passing on these shocks to the leg and spine.

I want to clarify that orthotics will NOT help your child develop an arch. It will provide all the benefits previously mentioned and MOST importantly, reduce or eliminate the foot and leg pain that your child has been experiencing.

There is a certain type of orthotic insert that is easier to fit than most and will provide great arch and heel support for your child. You can find out more about it in this post:

Insoles For Flat Feet – Say Goodbye To Foot Pain

Good Supportive Shoes – Eliminate Your Kids’ Foot Pain!

In the case that your child might need an orthotic, he must be fitted in a good supportive shoe, since the orthotics and the shoes work together. If you decide to invest in an orthotic, and you put it inside a shoe that is too soft or that doesn’t offer enough support, you will be THROWING your MONEY away!

Some parents also come to the store saying that they took their child to their pediatrician and even though the child showed clear signs of pronation and flat feet, the pediatrician told them that the child was fine and was going to outgrow the issue. Do NOT ignore your children’s foot or leg pain! Always get  a second opinion!

Making Sure The Orthotics Fit – 4 Steps To Get It Right!

Do you have a children shoe store in your area that you trust? It is extremely hard to fit orthotics and shoes for children if you don’t know what you are doing. I am only here to help parents who do not have a children shoe store in their area that they trust. I believe in supporting local businesses, specially those that hire specialized employees.

By a local shoe store I don’t mean chain stores such as Stride Rite or Nordstrom’s, since they don’t have qualified or experienced employees. I actually wrote a post explaining why you MUST STOP taking your kids’ to be fitted for shoes in those places. The post is called:

The Best Place To Buy Kids Shoes – Avoid Stride Rite, Nordstrom, Payless…

If your child has been diagnosed with flat feet and requires orthotics, the next step is to figure out which shoe will fit these orthotics best. Please keep in mind, not all shoes will work with the orthotics! You can follow the guidelines below to make sure the orthotics will fit properly inside your kids’ shoes:

1- It all starts with a shoe that has a removable insole. If the shoe doesn’t have a removable insole, the orthotic WILL NOT fit properly inside the shoe. You can find more information about this step in my post:

Shoes With Removable Insoles For Orthotics – Make Sure You Get The Right Fit

Shoes With Removable Insoles For Orthotics

2- The second step is to find a shoe with good support and structure. The shoe must have good support and a very firm heel counter in order for your child to get the 100% benefits that the orthotic has to offer. The picture below shows the difference between a shoe with a firm heel counter (first picture) and a shoe with a soft heel counter (second and third picture).

New Balance Shoes For Kids

Nike Shoes For Kids

Black Nike Velcro Shoes

3- The third step is to find a shoe that is going to be deep enough for the orthotic to fit properly inside the shoe. If the orthotic doesn’t fit deep down inside the shoe, it will give your child the impression that his feet are coming out of the shoe every time he walks. Let’s take a look at some pictures below showing the difference of shoe depth between two well-know brands such as New Balance and Nike.

Nike Velcro Kids Shoes

In the Nike shoe we can see how the orthotic is not fitting deep enough, whether in the New Balance shoe the orthotic is sitting much deeper inside the shoe.

New Balance Shoes For Orthotics

4- The shoe must be wide enough for the orthotic. If the shoe is not wide enough, you will end up hurting your kids’ feet. You will notice your child complaining that the shoes are too tight, and you will notice red marks along his small toe. Also, if the shoe is too narrow, the orthotic will end up making a hole through the shoe. Let’s take a look at an example of an orthotic in a shoe that is too narrow.

Nike Shoes For Kids

As you can see in both of these pictures the orthotic is poking out of the shoe. This will create friction between the orthotic and the shoe, which might lead to the shoe falling apart.

Nike Velcro For Boys

Finding The Best Shoes For Orthotic Inserts – Get It Right!

Fitting an orthotic inside a shoe requires a few steps, and even though these might sound like simple steps, it takes knowledge and experience to know which particular shoe will fit the orthotics best. There are certain shoe brands and shoe styles that will definitely work better for orthotics such as New Balance and Saucony. They are our top two selling brands at the shoe store, specially for children who have wide or extra wide feet.

These two brands come in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide widths. They also make good quality shoes with excellent support and firm heel counters.

At the kids’shoe store that I work for, I handle approximately 200 pair of fitting and try-ons per week. That is a lot of shoes folks! I know which are the best shoes in terms of support, structure, and durability. I also know which shoes are better suited for orthotics inserts.

If you don’t have a children’s shoe store in your area that specializes in shoe fitting and orthotics, below you can find a selection of the best fitting shoes for orthotic insert that also come in medium, wide, and extra wide widths!


The shoes in the first-row fit “short”, which means that you need to go a whole size longer of the size that your child measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.

The shoes in the second-row fit “true to size”, which means that you need to go a half a size longer of the size that your child measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.

I also wanted you to know that shoes with laces will provide more benefits than shoes with  velcro straps. Shoe laces will provide your child with more stability and support, and it will allow your child to completely secure the heel area of the shoe.

One of the main issues children have with wearing orthotics is the extra space that is found around their heels, since the orthotic are eventually raising your kids feet up, giving your child the impression that his feet are coming out of the shoe. A shoe that comes with shoe laces will allow your child to completely secure his heels in the shoe!

I created a post where I explain the importance  and benefits that shoe laces provide when wearing an orthotic. The post is called:

How To Tie Shoes With Orthotics – Stop Heel Slippage

Did you know that with early intervention orthotics can be a short-term solution to your children’s foot problems?

Have you found a particular shoe style that works better with orthotics? Is there a particular type of orthotic/insert that you recommend for kids’? Please share your finds in the comments section below so we can all benefit from your experiences!

STOP BUYING THE WRONG PAIR OF SHOES FOR YOUR CHILDREN.LET’S START TAKING CARE OF THEIR FEET!

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 kid’s feet and get my guide for free: 10 Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Buying Shoes for their Kids.

54 Comments on Best Shoes For Orthotic Inserts- Don’t Ignore Your Children Feet Or Leg Pain!

  1. My boys don’t have orthotics, but I do. And some of my shoes the orthotics fit fine, some I have to remove the insole, some I can’t. Others, I just have to go without because my orthotic won’t fit. Then I heard through my chiropractor that you can have the same orthotics made that are super thin and easier for smaller shoes, like dress shoes. I find that kids’ shoes allow the sole to come out much more often, so that helps.

    • Sarah,

      You are correct that most kid’s shoes come with removable insoles! Keep in mind that an orthotic that is super thin will not provide the same degree of support than the more substantial ones. Yes, they will fit in mostshoes, but if they are not providing the features of a good supportive orthotic, what is the purpose of wearing them? Thank you for sharing!

  2. I have kids but thankfully they don’t need orthotics. For myself though, I seem to have an arch high enough to need special support for. I found out the solution by accident when trying shoes that had arch support–they were especially comfortable for me. Now I make sure to look for such shoes when I need new ones!

    If I have a high arch but my children don’t look like they have them now, what are the chances they will have it when they are older? As you said they can’t grow out of such problems but how about them developing as the kids mature? Are there any kids shoe brands that cater for kids with high arches?

    • Regina,

      It depends on how old your children are, if they are older than 5 and they don’t have a high arch, then they most likely won’t get one. By age 5, all children arches should be developed. Children feet won’t flatten down as they mature, but wearing the right type of shoe will prevent them from having feet, leg or heel pain. There are no specific brands that cater to children with high arches, but there are certain shoes that will provide built in arches. Asics provide a lot of arch support, is that the brand you wear?

  3. My child wears orthotics and he always complains about his feet coming out of the shoe. I thought he was just complaining to complain, but now I realize he was right! I need to get him a pair of shoes with a deeper end ASAP, and probably switch to shoe laces! Thank you Juan!

    • You will see a huge difference once you get him a pair of shoes that fits with the orthotics. I would also advise you to get him shoe laces, that way you can secure his heel and let him run and play without feeling like his feet are coming out of the shoe!

  4. What great advice and help is available in this article. I always worry that with budget pressures families face these days, it’s very easy for people to buy their children’s shoes straight from the shelf without knowing if they are going to be right for their child. This really helps to explain why a good shoe is important for children, and gives good guidance about orthotics for specific problems. It’s important to think about these things so our children don’t develop longer term foot or leg problems.

    • Mara,

      Thank you! I believe feet are the foundation for our entire body, and we must take care of them! In order for children to not develop future back or leg problems, proper SUPPORTIVE shoes must be worn! Let me know if you have specific questions about any type of shoes!

  5. Juan!

    I love your passion. I did a quick look through ABOUT and viewed two other pages. The site is dedicated to providing information about shoes and foot care, especially for kids. The author has used his knowledge and experience working with an independent retailer of shoes, where he is mastering his skills and applying them, to build the site. He is deeply involved with the subject matter. And his employer/colleagues are committed to the “cause” as well. I like it that the author relates observations, insights and experience from daily retail work environment to facts on his pages. Readers’ comments support my view that author is authoritative.

    About this particular post, the author clarifies that depending on the degree of the problem, support shoes might suffice. The type of shoes required for orthotic inserts to be effectively used is well explained. The author also includes clear statements so as not to mislead reader who assumes a “cure” is being prescribed for some common foot problems.

    I will recommend this website to anyone with kids who needs advise on shoes and feet health.

    • Subra,

      The website goal is to provide parents with information about everything that relates to their children feet. My goal is for the parent to be able to make the most informative decision. Thank you for your kind words.

  6. I really like the rundown you gave for how shoes should work for orthotics. They obviously need to be long enough and wide enough for the orthotics, but I hadn’t thought about how deep they would need to be. Overall, this was great advice as I search for shoes that my son can wear with his orthotics. Thanks for sharing!

  7. Hi, my 3 year old has just received his first orthotics. After 10 minutes of wearing them he is crying and wants them out. Is this normal until he gets used to them. I’m dreading putting them back in tomorrow. Thank you very much.

    • Hello Jason,

      What are the orthotics made of? Children have a harder time getting used to orthotics made out of hard plastic. Please make sure he is wearing the correct shoe size and that you removed the inner sole of the shoe. I believe that if he is crying, something might be pinching him. Feel free to send me a picture of the orthotic and the shoes, that way I can give you better advice.

  8. Hello. My 11yr old daughter recently was fitted for orthotic hard cast braces for both of her feet. She has severe pronation and outward facing big toes. This has gradually became worse over the past 2 years. She works with PT and OT at her school daily but this concern is becoming worse for her. I have not bought her new shoes since she was fitted only because we are waiting on her braces to be made and delivered to us. After reading your post I feel more comfortable attempting to buy her new athletic shoes that will be best for her. Would you recommend going up a 1/2 size or staying at her current size? Her little toes turn outwards so bad anymore I always have her in athletic shoes for support. If anyone has any advice please feel free to let me know. Thank you so much!

    • Hello Kendi,

      Do not purchase new shoes until the braces arrive. Hard cast braces do take a lot of space, so even if you are buying a pair of sneakers that is wide enough and it has a deep end (the deeper the shoe, the deeper the cast will fit inside the shoe) you will probably have to go 1/2 or even a whole size bigger. The more you can have her in athletic shoes, the better. Did they give you a a toe rise pad to put in the brace?If fitted properly,, it can provide your child with more proprioceptive feedback at the toes and help “relax” the toes into more extension. Where are you located? Are there any good fitting shoe stores in your area?

  9. Great article. My son is nearly two and has to wear insert orthotic as his feet roll inward.
    I bought him sandals (start_rite brand) and he complains and hates putting them on (he seems to walk funny with them too). I just got him a new pair (bobux brand )popular by the podiatrist they said…anyways.
    It seems a lot softer yet not as hard on the heel and supportive as his previous pair, anychance i could send you a photo .. im a bit lost .

    • Alicia,

      I am not familiar with that brand, but if you send me a picture I can provide you with better advice. It will be ideal if you could find a pair of sandals with a built in arch. At the shoe store I work for, we see a lot f children that wear orthotics. Not wearing the right type of shoe during the winter or summer season can really set back all the money and time you have invested in orthotics. Are you looking for a pair of close toe or open toe sandals?
      If you are looking for a pair of close toe sandals you must get him Keen’s, they are the most supportive sandal in the market right now: Keen Sandal

      There are different type of styles of Keens, the one I sent you is the one which has more support.

      If you want to get him an open toe sandal, there is a style made by Teva which I found to be the most supportive one: Teva Tanza

      These are the two most supportive waterproof sandals. However, your child still needs to alternate with his sneakers. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  10. I am so happy to have found this article. Thank you!

    My 1.5 year old daughter has been walking “funny” to me since the beginning. We had her hips x-rayed and all is fine there. I noticed her toenails are curving with her toe. The doctor said that could be caused by trauma- she is curling her toes under when she walks and digs in with her toes considerably. I just went to a pediatric PT who ordered inserts for her to help push the toes up and also give her some arch support since her feet are flat.

    Now I know which brand of shoes to try when I have the inserts in hand. Thank you!!! Do you have any suggestions for house shoes/slippers?

    • Michelle,

      I am glad you got it all sorted it out!Now that you have the inserts, you need to find the perfect pair of shoes for her. You MUST make sure the shoes you get for her have a toe-box (front part of the shoes) that is wide enough. Since she tends to curl her toes you want to have enough room in her toe area so she can spread them out. A shoe that is too short or too narrow is going to force her to curl her toes.

      Do you have a kids’ shoe store in your area? Remember that if the shoes are not fitted properly your child won’t get any of the benefits the inserts have to offer.

      I wrote a post about slippers but I only describe the ones made with ” Star Wars” styles. I don’t think slippers will be a good idea since we want your daughter to start spreading her toes as much as possible. What I would definitely recommend is a pair of SEAMLESS socks. These type of socks will allow your child to spread out her toes, since there will be no seams constricting toe movement. Getting the correct sock size is also important since if you get them too short, you will be constricting her toe movement and the toes will be more prone to overlapping each other! You can find a post where I describe the best seamless socks for kids and how to make sure you are getting the correct sock size! Seamless Socks For Kids – Stop The Struggle Of Putting Socks On!

      Let me know if you have any other questions and good luck!

  11. My 8-year-old complains when we go on walks that his feet are on fire. I never listen to him, but now I think he needs help. I was fascinated to know that orthotics provide biomechanical balance by redistributing body weight! We will be sure to go get his feet checked to see how we can help his feet feel better!

  12. Hi, thank you so much for this article! I’m from the UK & unfortunately both my daughters (7&3) over pronate and have orthotic insoles. I am yet to find the perfect school shoe for either of them as non seem wide enough or deep enough! Summer is a nightmare with sandals as everything rubs the inside arch. Can you offer me any ideas on brands available in the U.K.? Please!

    • Hello Haley,

      I am not familiar at all with the shoe styles/shoe brands that are sold in the UK. I wish I could be more helpful. Take a look at this post where I describe the best summer sandals for children that have foot issues (you might be able to recognize some of the names and find them there). You can find that post here: The Best Summer Shoes For Kids – Get Them Ready For Summer Camp!

      For their school shoes, there is a mary jean shoe style sold here by the company named Stride Rite that comes in medium, wide, and extra wide so you can fit the orthotic inside the shoe. I describe that shoe style in this post: The Best Back To School Shoes – Ring The Bell, School’s In!

      I have written several articles about the best shoe styles for children who wear orthotics, and you can find them if you type your question on the homepage where it says “search”.

      Hope that helps!

  13. I’m a little confused you stress the importance of shoes with laces, but all the shoes you recommend don’t have laces… Are you just recommending the shoes just as advertising?

    • Hello Em,

      I am a confused as well, because the selection of shoes I recommend do have shoe laces. The first row of shoes have velcro, and the second row of shoes have shoe laces. You might not be able to see them if you are using an ad blocker. I hope this clarifies.

  14. We have tried about 30 shoes and they all are not deep enough for the orthotic to fit properly. Her heal keeps slipping out. Any suggestions for my 8 year old in a size 1.5 or 2? She is currently using her sisters old newbalance runners. I might have to drive to Phoenix to find something. Ugh.

  15. My grandson is autistic and toe walks, he has been fitted for braces as the muscle in his left foot had tightened to the point that he was unable to stand flat on that foot. The orthotic person recommended new balance sneakers. He measured his feet in the braces and said the size is 6.75″ long and needs wide width. Can you help me with an actual size? I need to order him sneakers ASAP. Thank you for your assistance

    • Susan,

      6.75 inches translate to a shoe size 11. Just so you know, your grandson will get more support and more stability from a pair of shoes that have shoelaces. Also, you might need to provide your grandson with a shoe size 11 1/2 since orthotics do take extra space. The shoe I recommend in this post are all available in wide and extra wide widths. I hope this helps!

  16. My daughter has flat feet and recently have been fitted with custom orthotics. The doctor stated she should wear some form of shoes with arch support even at home. We are always barefoot at home. Do you have any suggestions for slippers that we can put in the orthotics or some sort of indoor shoes with good arch support other than sneakers? Thank you!

    • Dear Sam,

      Orthotics work best in sneakers and you can’t fit orthotics in slippers. If you are looking for a shoe that your daughter can wear inside the house without the orthotic, you must provide her with a pair of good supportive shoes. Any of the shoes I describe in this post are supportive, flexible, and lightweight. It’s important that whenever your child is not wearing the orthotic she wear a good substantial, supportive sneaker.

  17. Hi, My daughter is 3 and is hyper mobile and her feet caved inwards and when trying to walk she would walk in the insides of her feet. She now wears orthotics and is doing a lot better. She currently wears New Balance runners but we live in Australia and it is quite hot now and she really needs sandals. What are the best sandals for children with orthotics?
    Thanks in advance.
    Kind Regards,
    Kristina

    • Hello Kristina,

      The right type of shoes with the correct type of orthotics do have a huge positive impact in the way our children walk. I am glad she is doing so much better!
      When it comes to sandals for children wit flat feet, the shoe brand Keen is the way to go. They come with a built in arch and a substantial sole. I wrote a post about the best summer sandals for kids and you can find it here:
      The Best Sandals For Kids – The Most Popular And Durable Kids Summer Shoes!

      Now when you get to the selection of Keens, please make sure you choose any of the styles that are named “Newport”, since these are the most supportive, durable styles made by Keen. I hope this helps!

      • Thank you for your reply. I really appreciate it. Are her orthotics able to go into the Keen sandals or is there enough support for her in these on the occasions she wears them?
        Kind Regards,
        Kristina

        • Hello Kristina.
          No, we don’t FIT orthotics in sandals. They just don’t. You can fit orthotics in everyday sneakers, dress shoes, and boots, but NOT in sandals. The sandals I recommend don’t have the same support as an orthotic (that’s why your daughter should still alternate and wear her sneakers). However, these sandals are the MOST supportive in the market. They come with a substantial rubber sole, built in arch, and great traction. I hope this clarifies!

          • Thank you for clarifying that.
            Which New Balance sneakers do you recommend for orthotics and toddlers with hypermobility and rolling inwards? Are the New Balance 574 good? In the laces or Velcro? My daughter has a narrow foot but has orthotics, which sneakers do you recommend?
            Thanks you,
            Kristina

          • Hello Kristina,

            Personally I don’t like to use the 574 style for orthotics. It’s more of a stylish, than a functional shoe to me. Plus there are many others more substantial, supportive styles.
            First of all if your daughter has narrow feet and wears orthotic, please provide her with shoes with laces. They will FIT her better (they hug the foot better), and they provide more support and stability.

            Does the orthotic takes a lot of room? What type of orthotic is it? My last question is, what shoe size does she wear? If you provide me with that information I can get back at you with which styles will be better for her feet.

  18. Hi, thanks for your reply.
    Her orthotic is a full length orthotic. It is 17cm long and at the widest point it is 16.5cm wide. She’s wears a US 9 toddlers. I am not sure what orthotic it is but I do know it is raised in the arch a lot. A lot more than most kids her age. Hope all this information helps. Looking forward to hearing your sneaker suggestions.

      • Hi I just wanted to thank you for your advice. We went and tried the Keen sandals on and it was the first time my daughter was so happy trying a pair of sandals on. She instantly loved them and was walking and running around the shop. I knew straight away that they must have been comfortable for her. I have also ordered her a pair of the New Balance shoes you recommended above.
        I would love some advice for my youngest daughter. She is 12 months old and has taken some steps. I would love your advice on what the best first walker shoe is to buy once she begins walking. She does not show any signs of hypermobility and she plants her feet perfectly.
        Thanks again.

        • Hello Kristina,

          I am glad she likes them!

          Remember that for your younger daughter we want to keep her barefoot around the house for healthy foot development. If you were thinking of taking her to the playground then that’s when a pair of shoes come into play. I actually wrote a post where I describe the best shoes for for a child that is learning how to walk and you can find it here:
          The Best Shoes For Babies Learning How To Walk – Allow Them To Take Those First Step With Confidence!

          Please let me know if that helps!

          • Hi Juan,
            My daughter has been wearing her Keen sandals and her New balance KJ888. Having laces has definitely made a difference. Thank you for your advice. The strange thing my husband and I have noticed is that our daughter walks so much better in the Keen sandals. Even her physiotherapist saw her in them both and was shocked with how much better she walks and how much more stable she is especially on uneven surfaces in the Keen’s.
            Why would this be? Wouldn’t she walk better in the shoes with orthotics?
            Would love to hear why this could be the case. Her physio would also like to know because she could not understand it, she even called them her magic shoes.
            Thanks
            Kristina

          • Hello Kristina,

            I am glad your daughter is doing so much better. I feel like it might be a matter of your daughter getting used to the shoes and the orthotics, but another reason might be that either the shoes or the orthotics are not the correct size.

            Did you try watching her wearing the sneakers without the orthotics? I would be curious to see what happens, because in this particular case when it comes to support less might be better. Don’t get me wrong, we still want a good supportive shoe, but maybe that’s all she needs. It’s really hard for me to asses why your daughter is walking differently without watching her walk.

            Please follow up with me and tell me how she does.

          • Hi Juan Pablo,
            My daughter has been wearing her Keen sandals and her New Balance runner you recommend. She loves them both.
            My husband and I have noticed that she walks so much better in the Keen sandals than the New Balance with her orthotics. Especially outside on uneven surfaces she looks so much better in the Keens. Our daughters physio also saw her in both shoes and was amazed how much better she walks in the Keens and she could not understand why.
            Do you have any ideas why this would be the case?
            Kind regards,
            Kristina

          • Hello Kristina,

            I responded to your message. If you are still concerned, you can send me a video of your daughter walking with and without the shoes, and then I can give you a better opinion. I can’t do much more without watching her walk. I would also like to see the orthotics she is wearing. Thank you.

          • Hi Juan,
            I will send you some videos which will hopefully make it more clear. I think the reason may be that the underneath of the keen sandal sole is quite wide than any other shoe she is worn and maybe gives her more stability due to the larger surface area?

            Also thank you for the advice for my youngest daughter. We got her the Stride rite soft motion pre walkers for daycare and playing outdoors. She has been walking now for 6 weeks. Just wanted to know how long should you keep them in pre walkers for and what do you recommend for her next pair of shoes.
            Kind Regards,
            Kristina

          • Kristina,

            That’s a good point. However, we are guessing since it can be more than one reason and we need to find out why so your daughter can walk and run comfortably.

            Is your youngest daughter stable when she walks now? Is she also running? If she is, the next pair of shoes should have a more substantial, supportive sole and a firmer heel counter.

  19. Hi Juan,
    Love your site! My 4 year old has worn smo orthotics since he was 1. His PT recently decided we should try cascade’s chipmunk insoles. They have a high arch. He pronates and his ankles roll in a bit barefoot. He has low tone. PT suggested shoes woth good ankle support to wear with the in soles. Do you have any high tops to suggest? His school won’t let him wear laces yet. Also any rain boit suggestions to use with insoles?
    Thanks!

    • Hello Piper,

      Chipmunks are great, we actually carry them at the shoe store and I have seen the positive impact they have when they are fitted properly. Chipmunks take a lot of room inside the shoe, so you MUST make sure you provide your boy with a shoe that is deep enough for the Chipmunk to sit deeper inside the shoe and don’t raise his feet up. I can definitely help you find the correct type of shoes but I need to know what is his shoe size and also if you are willing to provide him with shoelaces instead of velcro (shoelaces provide more support and more stability than velcro). I know you say the school won;t allow him but they should be able to accommodate if you explain them that he needs them for his orthotics. We don’t fit orthotics inside a rain boot since he won’t get any benefits out of them. A waterproof hiking boot will be different since it provides more support than a rain boot.

      Please get back at me with his shoe size so I can provide you with a better response.

  20. My son is 13 and very active in sports. He often has heel pain and his feet turn outward. Since his feet are growing, the podiatrist gave him off the shelf orthotics for his shoes. The few times he wore them, his knee hurt. Do you think the knee pain is related to the orthotics.

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