How Can You Tell If Your Child Has Medium, Wide, Or Extra Wide Feet? – The Most Effective Foot Measuring Tool

Foot Measure Device

Have you been looking for the perfect pair of shoes for your child? I always explain to parents that it doesn’t matter how supportive, flexible, and lightweight the shoes that you provide to your child are, if you don’t get the correct shoe size (by this I mean the correct shoe length and the correct shoe width), your child won’t get any of the benefits that the shoes have to offer. What’s even worse, you will end up creating several foot issues such as blisters, calluses, and corns.

All feet are different, people with the same foot length often have different foot width.

I have been fitting children’s shoes and orthotics for ten years at a premier children’s shoe store specializing in proper fit for over forty years. We specialize in children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fitting as well. It’s important for us to carry top quality shoes that are available in different widths, since that’s the only way we can guarantee to FIT every single child.

In order to get your children the correct shoe size, you must provide them with the correct shoe length and the correct shoe width. For example, if you leave the proper amount of growing room in front of the shoe but the shoe is too narrow, then it doesn’t matter how much space your child has in the front of the shoe since his small toe (pinky toe) will be squeezed against the side of the shoe. This means that your child will outgrow the width of the shoe faster than the length, and you will end up replacing the shoes faster than you expected. On the other hand, if the shoe is too wide then your kids’ feet will end up moving too much inside the shoe, and that constant rubbing will also lead to different types of foot issues.

My point is that you can’t possibly provide your child with the correct shoe size if you don’t know his or her foot width. Parents please remember that shoes come in different widths for a reason!

It doesn’t matter how narrow, wide, or extra wide your kids’ feet are, there is at least one shoe style out there that will fit the shape of their feet perfectly. TRUST ME, I have helped children with the narrowest and widest feet find the perfect pair of shoes.

There is an important question that all parents should know how to answer: How can we tell if our kids’ feet are medium, wide, or extra wide widths?

I always explain to parents how it’s better to take their children to their local children’s shoe store where a shoe fitter can properly measure their feet and find shoes that FIT. However, several parents have contacted me concerned about how most family owned children’s shoe stores have been closing down and they have nowhere to take their children to be fitted for shoes.

If you are one of those parents how must purchase his or her kids’ shoes online, I will describe exactly how to make sure you provide your child with the correct shoe size (which involves getting the correct shoe length and also the correct shoe width).

In this post I will describe the best way to find out your child’s correct shoe width and provide you with a selection of  shoes that are available in different widths!

Child Foot Measure

The Most Effective Way To Figure Out Your Kids’ Shoe Size!

I created a shoe size chart that if used correctly it will show you exactly your child’s foot length size and the correct shoe width. As far as amterials go, all you will need is a pair of scissors, tape, pencil, and your kids’ feet!

You can find that size chart  in the link below with all the details and explanations to easy figure out your child’s foot size. If you have any questions after reading the instructions please don’t hesitate to contact me and I will guide you through the process.

You can find the chart here:

The Most Effective Way To Figure Out Your Kids’ Foot Width

Please remember that in order to keep your kids’ feet and legs healthy you must provide them with the correct shoe size, and this involves the correct shoe length AND the correct shoe width.

Most parents are not aware that their kids’ have wide or extra wide feet, and they end up squeezing their toes in shoes that are too narrow.

If you just got new shoes for your children and you are not 100% sure they are fitting them properly, take a look at how the shoe is fitting them when is on their feet. For example, take a look at the picture below. Do you notice how there is a bump pressing on the side of the shoe? If you see the same scenario with your kids’ shoes, it means that they are wearing shoes that are too narrow.

Extra Wide Shoes For Kids

That bump that you notice is his or her pinky toe (small toe) being pressed against the side of the shoe by the other toes. This constant friction between your child’s small toe against the side of the shoe or the other toes will lead to blisters, calluses, and even corns (which are really hard to get rid of).

Shoes For Your Child With Medium, Wide, Or Extra Wide Feet!

After reading the foot measuring chart, you should be ready to measure your child’s feet and find his or her correct shoe size.

Now that you know your child’s shoe width and length, you are ready to make the most informative decision.

I want you to remember one thing though, it doesn’t matter how narrow or wide your kids’ feet are, there is at least one particular shoe style out there that will fit the shape of his or her feet perfectly and I will help you find it!

For example, did you know that cleats in wide and extra wide widths actually existed? I have helped several families that came to the shoe store saying how his or her child had to STOP playing soccer or baseball since they were constantly having blisters and calluses on their feet due to the shoes being too narrow. If you know of a family who has a child that is into playing sports and has extra wide feet, please let them know that cleats in extra wide widths do EXIST, and you can learn more about them in two articles I wrote called:

Wide Soccer Cleats For Kids – The Best Wide and Extra Wide Soccer Cleats For Children!

Wide Width Baseball Cleats – They Do Exist!

NEVER settle for longer shoes to compensate when your child has wide feet, or shorter shoes for when your child has narrow feet.

One of the most common mistakes I see parents make is that when their children complain about the shoes feeling tight around the width area they just get them a longer shoe until the child says they are not tight anymore. The same applies when a child has narrow feet, the parents start trying shorter shoes until there is no more gaps around the heel area of the shoe.

Both of these strategies will lead to foot issues and compromising your child’s stability. Longer shoes will make your child more prone to falling down and lead to blisters, calluses, and corns from your child’s feet moving too much and rubbing constantly against the shoe. Shorter shoes will lead to the same issues since your child’s toes will be cramped inside the shoe and rub against each other.

If you have been looking for an everyday shoe that your child can wear all day, below you can find a selection of the most supportive, lightweight, and flexible everyday shoes that are also available in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide widths!

The first row of shoes is made by Saucony and they tend to fit in the shorter side, which means that whichever size your child measures in the scale, you need to go a whole size bigger in the shoe size to allow for growing room.

The second row of shoes is made by the shoe company New Balance, and these shoes all fit “true to size” which means that whatever shoe size your child measures in the scale, you need to go a half a size longer to allow for growing room.

If you still have questions about how these shoe styles FIT please don’t hesitate to contact me and I will guide you through the process of making sure that the shoes fit the shape of your kids’ feet perfectly.

Do you happen to have a good children shoe store in your area that you TRUST? Parents are always contacting me asking where they can get their children’s shoes, so it will be very helpful if you can leave your location and the name of the children’s shoe store that you trust so all parents can benefit from your experiences!


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.

4 Comments on How Can You Tell If Your Child Has Medium, Wide, Or Extra Wide Feet? – The Most Effective Foot Measuring Tool

  1. Hi Juan
    Where are you? Id love to come and see you. My daughter is 5 years old and she has long narrow flat feet. However she has a bump on the top of her foot from me, due to having extremely high arches and also a pinkie toe that hasn’t quite turned out so become sore on her shoe. She has just started school and we got “fitted” at a rebel sports store but after just 6 weeks she has very sore feet. It was an asicis – can you help? we live on the Sunshine Coast,qld but happy to drive to Brisbane if you recommend anyone. Ive read your posts and I am trying to decide between the new balance or sacouny

    • Hello Rachel,

      The children’s shoe store I used to work in is called Shoe Train and is located in Potomac, Maryland. I am not there anymore but the staff is great and some of them have 25+ years of experience. I am not familiar with any good children’s shoe store in your area.

      Did you try shoelaces or velcro? Keep in mind that shoelaces will provide more support and stability and also fit the shape of her narrow feet much better than velcro.
      When it comes to dealing with her pinky toe there are certain orthotics that might help her specially if you put a toe rise, since it will help spread her toes more evenly.

      Where does her feet actually hurt? This will allow me to identify if the shoe is not supportive enough, or if it’s hurting on the top of her feet the shoe might not be deep enough which means that the top part of her foot is being pressured by the shoe. Let me know so I can give you better advise!

  2. Hi! My daughter is 8 and has Autism. She has always worn mary jane shoes. She was recently referred to a PT bc of her right foot turning inward. Her PT suggested a good, stable shoe. She is a 4.5. I plan on using your tool for measuring but i know she has a wide forefoot. I bought a pair of Saucony cohesion shoes. Prior to finding this website. My concern is that since she is already showing a deformity if i need to go on and get her orthotics. The right foot looks super flat and overpronated. She needs something super stable for her heel. I feel terrible. She was just really picky and likes velcro bc she can’t independently put on laced shoes yet. She is also in a size that you can’t find velcro shoes in. Idk what shoes have removable insoles (the saucony conhesions do not) and she is still a girl and likes pretty shoes. We have no shoe shops in our area for her to be fitted. Thank you.

    • Hello Gloria,
      It is frustrating when we don’t actually have a shoe store to take our kids to be properly fitted for shoes. I understand that your daughter prefers Mary jane shoes and she can still wear them, but I will definitely recommend she wears a pair of supportive, stable sneakers for most of the day.

      For the record, you always should get the orthotics first before purchasing shoes because the shoes need to accommodate the orthotic not the other way around. Saucony cohesion shoes are great in terms of support, you might have to use a screwdriver to remove the inner sole though.

      I would recommend you take her to your physical therapist to be evaluated for orthotics. I don’t know if she has expressed that she has foot or leg pain, but children with flat feet and overpronation normally do.
      I can definitely provide you with a selection of velcro shoes (probably 2 or 3 shoe styles) that come in her size and will be supportive enough to fit an orthotic.
      But please first find out what orthotic she needs. If I were you I would mention to the PT if they are familiar with CASCADE DAFO orthotics since I have fitted those before and they make a huge difference. I hope this helps and please folow up with me.

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