Do you have a child with extra wide feet and you always seem to have the hardest time finding shoes that fit the shape of his/her feet? Did you know that if you provide your child with shoes that are too narrow you can make your child more prone to developing blisters, calluses, and corns?
The good news is that I know which shoe styles will fit a child with extra wide feet better.
I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store for the last ten years, where we specialize in children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. I have fitted hundreds of different shoes and I am familiar with which shoe brands and which shoe styles are wider than others.
The most common mistake parents make when trying to find shoes for their kids with extra wide feet is to assume that choosing a shoe that comes in extra wide widths (“XW”) will automatically fit the shape of their kids’ feet.
There are two key features that the shoes must provide and parents might not be aware of them. The shoes must be DEEP and they must come with a ROUND TOE-BOX.
Let me show you what I mean by “deep” shoes. A deep shoe will allow your child’s feet to fit deeply inside the shoes, and prevent the top part of your child’s feet from rubbing against the top part of the shoes. Let me show you the difference between a deep shoe and one that is not. Both of the shoes below have an orthotic fitted inside of them, do you notice how much deeper the orthotic is fitting in the New Balance shoe style (grey and pink)?
The picture below shows it more clearly. Do you notice how the orthotic fitted in the Asics shoe style (all black) is fitting further up than in the New Balance shoe style?
A pair of deep shoes will allow your child’s extra wide feet to sit more comfortably inside the shoes.
Shoes what come with a rounder toe-box are also really important since they will prevent your kids’ toes from rubbing against each other or the side of the shoes. Let me show you what I mean when I mention shoes with rounder toe-boxes. Do you notice in the picture below how the New Balance shoe style has a much rounder toe box than the Asics one?
Do you happen to have a child that has extra wide feet and a high instep? Do you know what the instep of the foot is? The instep is the top part of the foot, and when it’s high then we must find shoes to accommodate the instep. Take a look at the picture below which shows the foot of a child with a high instep:
If you happen to have a child with extra wide feet and a high instep then we must find a shoe that is labeled as extra wide (“XW”), but that is also deep and that comes with a round toe-box. The issue is that shoes don’t come labeled as “deep” or with a “round toe-box”, so there is no way for you to know which ones to choose.
The good news is that I know exactly which kids” shoes provide these features and I will show them to you below.In this article I will describe the best shoes for extra wide feet.
Do you Have Children with Extra Wide Feet? – Don’t Panic!
The million dollar question I am asked by almost every single parent who comes to the store with a child who has extra wide feet is:
Are his or her feet always going to stay extra wide?
My answer is: It depends on each child. In most cases the child’s feet tend to narrow down with age, but in certain cases children keep their extra wide width feet all their lives.
Fitting your child in the correct pair of shoes starting from an early age can prevent foot issues in the future. Most parents ignore the importance of fitting the width of their kids’ feet, and they focus only on the amount of space they have between the end of their longest toe and the end of the shoe.
Please keep in mind that it doesn’t matter how much growing room you leave for your child’s feet, if the shoes are not wide enough for their feet they will outgrow the width of the shoe faster than the length, and you will have to replace the shoes sooner than you expected.
Most parents don’t realize that there are shoes for extra wide feet available. I have heard plenty of moms mistakenly say “my child cannot wear dress shoes because his/her feet are too wide” or “my child cannot wear sandals because his/her feet are too wide”.
While it’s true that there may be limited shoe styles available, I want you to remember that there is always at least one shoe style that will fit the shape of your kids’ feet, and I will HELP YOU find them.
I have fitted kids with extra wide feet in dress shoes, sandals, soccer cleats, boots… you name it! There is no reason why you should avoid buying a particular shoe style for your child just because you believe it won’t fit your child’s extra wide feet.
Extra Wide Shoes for Kids – The Features!
Besides fitting the shape of your child’s extra wide feet, the shoes I will describe in this article will provide the following features:
- Arch and ankle support: This will minimize the impact that your feet take every time they come in contact with the ground, keeping your kids’ feet healthy.
- Lightweight and flexible: The shoes must be supportive, but lightweight and flexible at the same time. This will prevent your kids’ feet and legs from easily getting tired.
- Breathable: This feature will prevent your kids’ feet from sweating too much.
I always recommend that parents have their children’s feet properly measured at their local children’s shoe store, where a shoe fitter can find the perfect pair of shoes for your child. The issue is that most parents don’t have a local kids’ shoe store in their area, and they must end up purchasing their kids’ shoes online.
I created a map that describes the best fitting children’s shoe stores by state, so you should START by taking a look at it to check if there is one in your area:
If you still can’t seem to find a store in your area, then proceed to reading an article where I describe the most effective way to figure out your child’s foot size from home:
Now that you know what features the shoes must provide and how to make sure you provide your child with the correct shoe size, let’s take a look at a selection of the best shoes for extra wide feet.
The Best Shoes for Extra Wide Feet – The Secret Revealed!
Below you can find a selection of the best kids’ sneakers that come with a round toe-box, are deep, and that also come in extra wide widths.
These shoe styles 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 standard shoe measuring scale (Brannock device) in order to allow for growing room.
STOP hurting your kids’ feet! Provide them with the correct shoe size in order to prevent foot problems and foot injuries in the long run!
Do you happen to need a pair of extra wide shoes for yourself? I have also fitted several moms that came to the store with extra wide feet in deep shoes with a round toe-box. I am familiar with which are the best shoe styles for women with extra wide feet, and I can show you which are the best styles in an article I wrote called:
Wide feet in children are common.
Don’t panic! You are absolutely not alone. Over the years, I have seen hundreds of children who come into the store with feet that are very wide, however we always find the right pair of shoes for them. Whether you need an everyday sneaker, dress shoe, hiking/snow boot, a pair of Mary Janes or soccer cleats, I will help you find the right extra wide shoe style for your child.
After working for years in a specialty shoe store for children I’ve grown into an expert in this area, if you cannot find your child a pair of extra wide shoes, contact me and I will help you find them.
What are the Risks of Fitting your Child in Shoes That are too Narrow?
If your child is wearing shoes that are too small or too narrow, you are putting him/her at risk of developing serious foot deformities such as bunions, corns, or blisters.
When a child is trying on shoes and tells the parents that they feel too tight, the parents often respond by purchasing the child a LONGER pair of shoes.This is one of the most common mistakes parents make!
It is important to NOT purchase longer shoes to compensate for the width as you will end up compromising your child’s stability and make him or her more prone to falling down.
Adding length might temporarily help with the width, but in a month or so the child will start complaining again about the shoes feeling too tight. It’s the width parents! The width! NOT the length…
The most common problem I have seen is the development of corns. The hard corn usually starts as red skin, followed by a coating of callus, which develops into a hard corn. Most hard corns form on the side of the little toe (thus the importance of shoes coming with a round toe-box), but are also found in other places where there is steady pressure and abrasion.
The goal is to prevent the corn since they are hard to eliminate and can recur.
The other main problems of shoes being too narrow are:
My Child Started Playing Soccer – All the Cleats are too Narrow!
Did you know there is one particular soccer cleat style that will fit a child with extra wide feet? Most parents don’t even know that this soccer cleat exists!
If you are interested in learning more about where to get these wide and extra wide soccer cleats, please take a look at an article I wrote called:
I provided you with a selection of the best extra wide shoes for children, so you can STOP pinching your kids toes and keep their feet healthy!
Do you have a child that has extra wide width feet? Are you having the hardest time finding a particular shoe style that fits? Certainly contact me via e-mail or in the comments section with further questions.