Find Out Why Children with Foot Conditions Must Remove their Shoes Properly
Is your child dealing with a foot condition that requires him or her to wear supportive shoes? Have you noticed that the back part of your child’s shoes gets stretched out faster than expected? When children take their shoes off without undoing either the velcro straps or shoelaces, they stretch out the back part of the shoes, sometimes to the point where it doesn’t provide good support anymore. Some families invest money in providing their children with supportive shoes that are made from high-quality materials, but when the shoes are not taken off properly they get stretched out which defeats the whole purpose of wearing supportive shoes. Sure, wear and tear is expected throughout time, but it shouldn’t be within the next times of wear.
Children who suffer from foot conditions such as flat feet, rolled ankles, overpronation, plantar fasciitis, or any other foot condition that you might think of can strongly benefit from wearing supportive shoes.
What Happens When Children Take Off their Shoes Without Undoing them Properly?
The back part of the shoes (heel counter) will get stretched out and worn out faster. Let’s take a look at a couple of images for better visualization purposes.
In this first example, we have two New Balance shoes that are the same size in length. The shoe on the left has never been worn and the shoe on the right has been worn for 2 months. Do you notice how the heel counter of the shoe on the right image is all stretched out? This is from the child not undoing the velcro strap before taking the shoes off.
The difference between the new shoe on the left and the worn shoe on the right is pretty incredible!
The second example shows two Asics shoes that are the same size in length. The shoe on the left is new right out of the box, while the shoe on the right has been worn for one month. Do you notice how the heel counter of the shoe in the right image is already stretched out? This most likely happened because the child didn’t undo the velcro strap of the shoes when taking the shoes off every time.
Keep the Support of the Shoes Intact by Taking the Shoes Off Properly!
The heel counter is the back part of the shoes that provides heel and ankle support, and the firmer it is, the better support that it provides. However, when children kick off their shoes without properly undoing them, the heel counter of the shoe gets stretched out and becomes less supportive.
Let’s take a look at an image that shows the difference between a shoe with a firm heel counter versus a shoe with a soft heel counter:
You should always press on the heel counter of your child’s shoes to make sure that it feels firm and sturdy.
I have noticed how most children don’t properly undo their shoes before taking them off. I always emphasize to them the importance of undoing the velcro straps or shoelaces of the shoes before taking them off.
Did you know that the proper fit of the shoes is just as important (if not more important) than the support or the material that the shoes are made of? I also suggest that you check whether you have a good local fitting shoe store where you can take your child to be properly fitted for shoes.
Common Signs that Your Child is not Removing His/Her Shoes Properly
Have you noticed wear and tear on the side of your child’s shoes? Take a look at the image below, does it look familiar? Some families believe that this is a manufacturer defect, but when they bring the shoes to the shoe store, they are surprised to hear that wear and tear in that area is from the child using their opposite foot to remove the shoes.
Below is another image for better visualization purposes:
Children Should Always Outgrow their Shoes Before they Fall Apart!
Getting your child into the habit of properly removing his or her shoes will not only conserve the support of the shoes, but it will also help make the shoes last longer. Since children outgrow their shoes pretty quickly, they should always outgrow their shoes before they are ready to be replaced.
Sometimes we don’t undo our shoelaces when we are rushing out of the house or when we come home from the gym. It happens to the best of us! However, for children who have foot conditions, we must make sure that they are removing their shoes properly, as it can make all of the difference when it comes to properly supporting their feet.
Additional Advantages of Properly Removing the Shoes
Parents should know that there are other additional benefits of encouraging their children to take their shoes off properly:
- It helps them to perform their tasks independently and promotes patience
- It helps in strengthening the finger muscles
- It increases concentration
- It helps to develop order and hand-eye coordination
How many times have you asked your children to take their shoes off properly by undoing the velcro straps or the shoelaces? I know it must be frustrating to keep reminding them but this is important, especially if your child has foot issues and wears orthotics inside the shoes. In addition, buying good quality and supportive shoes is an investment, so have your child get the most out of the shoes by showing them how to take their shoes off properly!
If a child is not able to remove his or her shoes independently parents will need to step up and help them, just make sure to undo the velcro or shoelaces before taking the shoes off.
Don’t hesitate to contact me if you are having trouble finding a specific pair of shoes for your child’s foot condition or unique foot shape. It doesn’t matter whether your child’s feet are really narrow or extra wide, there is always a pair of shoes out there that will fit the shape of your child’s feet perfectly, and I will help you find them!
Do you have a child who takes the shoes off without undoing the velcro straps or the shoelaces? Have you noticed that the shoes get stretched out or worn out faster than expected? Share your experience in the comments section below as I am sure other families can relate to them.