I have been contacted by several parents and physical/occupational therapists with one common question: What are the best sandals to wear in the summer for children who walk with their tip-toes? The correct type of sandal can make a world of difference in treating and preventing your child’s tip-toe walking condition.
There is a common misconception that children will outgrow of toe walking. I have seen several cases where they actually did, but also several other cases where they didn’t. Either way, there is one thing that most doctors agree with: Early and prompt intervention is key when dealing with toe walking.
Every parent should be aware that prolonged toe-walking can create serious issues if not dealt with from an early stage.
Do you have a child that has been diagnosed with toe-walking and you are wondering about what to do during the summer season? Are you looking for a pair of sandals that will help treat your child’s toe walking condition?
There is a particular sandal style that has proven to be the most effective one when it comes to treating tip-toe walking.
There are certain children who may walk on their toes for most of the time for no apparent reason. The reason why children toe-walk remains unknown, but you need to take early action because this condition might lead to muscle shortening in the calf muscles. Some children simply walk on their toes because they like the sensation that they get when they do it. Whichever the reason may be, you need to take this condition seriously, and the early you take action, the better. I have heard several different stories from different families about how their children ended up needing casting because of their toe walking condition.
If your child is below the age of 2 years and toe-walks, there is nothing for you to worry about. If your child is beyond the age of three and you still notice that your child toe walks, you will need to provide your child with the correct pair of shoes, since early intervention is key when treating this condition.
Before you seek out intervention from a professional, I recommend fitting your child in the correct pair of shoes, since this might decrease the frequency of toe walking.
I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store for over 10 years now. This experience has afforded me many insights into children’s shoes and the way they fit. Our store specializes in shoes for children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. From my experience fitting thousands of kids, I have become familiar with the best shoe brands for children that toe-walk and the best styles among those brands.
If you want to learn how to correct toe walking in children, I describe a selection of the best everyday sneakers for children who toe-walk in another article. Go to the link below:
When it comes to summer shoes, the selection is very limited, since there are only certain sandals that will help prevent your child getting on his/her toes as much.
Sandals for Toe Walking – The 3 Most Important Features!
There are 3 key features that your kid’s sandals must provide in order to prevent your child from getting on his/her toes as much.
✅ The first feature is for the sandal to not be as flexible, which means that the sandals should provide a certain degree of flexibility but not too flexible since that means that the sandal won’t provide any type of support. Let’s visualize what I referring to.
The sandals that you provide to your tip-toe walker child should always bend at the ball of the foot but not any further.
In the first image you can find a sandals that provides the correct amount of flexibility.
In the second image you can find a sandal that is too flexible and will make it easier for your child to get on his/her toes.
✅ The second feature is for the shoes to provide a substantial sole instead of a soft one. This will support their feet and also prevent them from going on their toes as much.
The image below shows a pair of sandals that come with a substantial sole that will support your kids’ feet:
✅ The third feature involves providing your child with a pair of sandals that can be tighten properly. There are certain sandals that come with a toggle shoelace in addition to a Velcro strap that will hold your child’s foot in place and prevent your child from getting on his/her toes as much. It’s important that your children pull the sandals straps tightly, since this will provide them with better support and stability.
Children who toe walk for several years might develop muscular tightness and range of motion limitations. If your child’s heel cords get really tight, then your child might require bracing.
I have fitted this sandal in several toe walking children and we were able to notice a difference right away in the way the child was walking.
The particular sandal that has proven to the best most effective one is made by the shoe company Keen. I want to clarify that not all Keen sandals are effective for toe walking children, just one specific style.
It’s important to not provide a lot of growing room for children who toe walk, since when there is a lot of extra room in the front of the shoes that might make your child more prone to getting on his/her toes.
In order to get the correct sandal size, you need to be absolutely sure of your child’s foot size. Start by reading an article I wrote where I describe the simplest, yet most effective way to figure out your child’s foot size from home. Go to the link below:
Now that you know how to figure out your child’s exact foot size and what features these sandals will provide to your child’s feet, you are ready to take a look at a selection of the best sandals for toe walking.
The Best Sandals for Toe Walking ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Please note that I only review shoe styles that I have fitted before, since that is the only way for me to tell how well-made the shoes are, the amount of support that they provide, and how they fit.
Here you can find a selection of the best sandals for toe walking. Please click on the image to see all the different colors that the sandal is available in. The first two styles are for toddlers, and the two styles on the bottom are for older children.
Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.
These are the most effective sandal styles that have proven to help treat toe walking.
It’s important to note that Keen sandals are not available in half sizes, they are available in whole sizes only. Depending on how many months of summer you have left in your area, you will want more or less growing room.
Let me provide you with a couple of scenarios that will help you figure out what sandal size you need for your child.
If your child measures a foot size 10, you will want to get the size 11 sandal in order to allow for the correct amount of growing room. This scenario will work if you have 4 to 5 months left of summer.
If your child measures a foot size 10 and you only have 2 months left of summer, then you will want to get the size 10 sandal.
This sandal style will fit children with medium or wide feet only. If your child happens to have narrow feet please contact me directly and I will be able to recommend a different sandal style.
Always keep a close eye on your child’s walking gait. It’s important that your child’s feet don’t turn inwards or outwards, since this can throw your child’s whole body out of alignment.
Wearing the correct type of shoes can improve your child’s overall posture, allowing your child to walk and run straighter.
There have been cases where the child’s toe walking is not able to be corrected by wearing the correct types of shoes. If your child wears these shoes for 3 months and the toe walking condition doesn’t improve, you will have to consider orthotics.
I am always explaining to parents how there are no sandals that are capable of accommodating an orthotic, but you can definitely fit them in your child’s sneakers. Don’t try to fit a pair of orthotics in your kids’ sandals because they simply won’t do any good.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you feel like your child might be a candidate for orthotics: email@example.com
Have you tried a pair of Keen sandals for your child before? Have they been effective in treating and preventing your child’s toe walking habits during the summer? Please share your thoughts below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.