The Best Kids’ Shoes for Orthotics – Supportive and Comfortable Shoes
Are you having a hard time finding pair of shoes to accommodate your child’s orthotics? Have you tried several different shoes but none of them seem to be deep or wide enough to fit your kids’ orthotics? I have put together a selection of the best kids’ shoes for orthotics based on my many years of shoe fitting experience.
My Experience Fitting Children’s Shoes and Orthotics – Over a Decade of Experience
I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store for over 10 years now that specializes in children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. We carry some of the most supportive children’s shoes and orthotics, and I am familiar with which shoe brands and which shoe styles are capable of accommodating orthotics.
Several pediatricians, physical, and occupational therapists refer families to the shoe store that I work for to be fitted for supportive shoes and orthotics.
Is Your Child Dealing with a Specific Foot Condition?
If your child has been diagnosed with flat feet, overpronation, toe walking, low muscle tone, or any other foot condition that requires wearing an orthotic inside the shoes, you need to find shoes that provide good support and are capable of accommodating the orthotic at the same time.
The Importance of Fitting Your Child’s Orthotics Correctly
Orthotics can improve your children’s foot posture tremendously by preventing their feet from collapsing and aligning their feet and legs, helping them walk and run straighter. However, if your child’s orthotics are fitted in the wrong pair of shoes, your child won’t get any of the benefits that the orthotics have to offer.
Full-length orthotics CAN take a lot of extra space inside the shoes, so the shoes need to provide extra depth and be available in different widths such as wide (W) and extra wide widths (XW), as this allows for extra space for the orthotics to be fitted inside the shoes.
What Makes the Shoes I Recommend Effective for Orthotics? – 6 Key Features!
1️⃣ Extra Depth: This feature allows the orthotic to fit deeply inside the shoes and prevent your kids’ feet from being raised by the orthotics. The depth of the shoes plays a key role, as it’s important for the orthotics to fit deeply inside your kids’ shoes to not give your child the impression that their feet are coming out of the shoes.
Let me show you what a tremendous difference a shoe that provides extra depth can make. Below is a picture of an orthotic fitted in a pair of shoes that provide extra depth (image on the right) and a pair of shoes that don’t provide extra depth (image on the left). Do you notice how much deeper the orthotic is fitting inside the shoe on the right?
Below you can find another example with a different orthotic:
2️⃣ Substantial Outsoles: The shoes must provide a substantial outsole to hold the orthotic in place and reduce the impact that your child’s feet and legs take every time they become in contact with the ground. Let me show you the difference in support between one of the shoes I recommend and a different shoe:
3️⃣ Firm Heel Counters: The shoes must come with a firm heel counter to help the orthotic provide good ankle support. Shoes that come with a firm heel counter help strengthen and straighten your kids’ ankles. Let’s take a look at the difference between a shoe that provides a firm heel counter and one that doesn’t:
4️⃣ Flexible and Lightweight: The shoes must be supportive, but lightweight and flexible at the same time to prevent your child’s feet and legs from easily getting tired.
5️⃣ Rounder Toe-Box: This feature is going to prevent the orthotic from poking a hole in the front of the shoes.
6️⃣ Straight Lasts: This feature helps prevent the forefoot from pushing out. You need to stay away from shoes that have an excessively curved last as they lack heel stability. Take a look at the image below for better visualization purposes:
I only write reviews of shoes that I have fitted before, otherwise, I wouldn’t know how well-made they are, the amount of support that they provide, and how they fit.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the best kids’ shoes for orthotics. Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.
The Best Kids’ Shoes for Orthotics ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Please note that all of the shoes below are available in different widths such as medium (M), wide (W), and extra wide (XW). You should take a look at the description below each shoe to find out the additional features that each shoe provides.
What Shoe Size Should You Order?
This directly depends on what type of orthotic your child wears, as some orthotics take up a lot more extra space than others. For example, a full-length orthotic will take a lot more space than a 3/4-length orthotic.
If you are unsure about what shoe size you should order to accommodate your child’s orthotics I suggest that you use this free resource:
Are Shoes with Laces Better than Shoes with Alternative Closures?
I always recommend a pair of shoes that come with shoelaces instead of velcro closure for children who wear orthotics, as shoelaces help keep the orthotic in place. Shoelaces also provide better support and stability, and they will push your kids’ heels back supporting and securing them against the back of the shoes.
There is a specific shoe lacing technique that I like to use for children who wear orthotics. You can learn about this shoe lacing technique in the article below:
Do You Have a Specialized Children’s Shoe Store in Your Area?
I always recommend parents take their kids to be properly fitted for shoes at the local shoe store that they trust, where a shoe fitter can properly measure their feet and find shoes that fit. However, not all parents have a good fitting children’s shoe store in their area. That is the reason why I decided to create a resource where I describe the best fitting children’s shoe stores by state:
Not Sure What Orthotic to Order for Your Child? – Let’s Find Out!
I have fitted several different types of orthotics through the years, but there are two particular ones that I have found to be the most effective ones when it comes to treating and preventing flat feet, rolled ankles, and overpronation. These orthotics also make a tremendous difference in improving a child’s overall posture.
The reason I recommend these two particular orthotics is that they provide excellent arch and heel support, and at the same time, they are not as invasive as other orthotics. This means that the orthotics allow the child’s foot and leg muscles to develop on their own while supporting them.
Between the two orthotics that I recommend the one that will work best for your child depends on the degree of your child’s foot condition:
In that article I describe the orthotics I was telling you about which provide optimal arch support, come with a heel cup to help strengthen and straighten your child’s ankles, and are made from comfortable materials.
Are Any Other Shoe Choices Available?
Do not hesitate to contact me if you are having trouble finding a different pair of shoes other than sneakers to fit your child’s orthotics:
Have you tried a particular shoe style that has worked well in accommodating your child’s orthotics? Please share your findings below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.