Have you noticed your child walking or running different lately? Has your child been falling more often? If your children have been diagnosed with knock knees there are simple steps you can take in order to improve the way they walk.
Knock knees which are scientifically known as Genu Valcum is a condition where the two knees touch each other while standing straight. It’ important to understand that knock knees are opposite of bow legs, since in the case of bow legs, the knees are far away from each other.
I have been working for a children’s shoe store for the last 10 years now, and we specialize in children with foot and leg problems. We carry some of the most supportive children’s shoes that come in different widths such as narrow, medium, wide, and extra wide, which allows us to fit any type of feet no matter how narrow or wide they are.
We also carry orthotics in case the shoes are not fully correcting the condition. We are one of the most popular children’s shoe stores in the country, and I am lucky enough to help hundreds of children per week.
The most simple way to figure out whether your child has knock knees is to stand him or her straight and notice if the knees are coming together (make sure your child is standing straight). Knock knees is a condition that can be painful and in some cases may require surgery to reduce or fully eliminate the pain, but if you provide your child with the correct pair of shoes (substantial and supportive), you can significantly improve the way your child walks and reduce or fully eliminate the pain.
Please keep in mind that in some cases good supportive shoes will not be enough to improve the way your child walks, and if that is the case with your child you might have to provide him or her with an orthotic. However, I have seen the positive impact that good supportive shoes have in children with knock knees, and you will notice a difference immediately.
Let’s take a look at a picture of a child with knock knees and flat feet:
This is a picture of a flat footed standing barefoot. Do you notice how the feet are collapsing and turning inwards?
Now let’s take a look at a picture of the same child but standing in a pair of orthotics. Do you notice how much straighter the feet are?
Orthotics are a great way of improving your child’s posture but you should always START by trying a pair of supportive shoes first.
Let me show the difference that a pair of good supportive shoes can make. Let’s take a look at a picture of a child wearing a pair of unsupportive shoes. Do you notice how the feet are collapsing and turning inwards?
Now let’s take a look at a picture of a child wearing a pair of supportive shoes. Do you notice how much straighter the feet are?
Let me show you a selection of the best shoes for knock knees. Please keep in mind that your children won’t get any of the benefits that the shoes have to offer if you don’t provide them with the correct shoe size.
Can a Child Outgrow the Knock Knees Condition? – Learn The Facts!
Knock knees are common in kids between the ages of 2 to 5. At this stage in the life of children, knock knees is just a process of growth and there is no need to be too alarmed. You will notice in certain children between those ages how their knees come together as the ankles widen apart. At this stage, it is part of the growth process as it makes kids’ feet stable and keeps the kids balance as their bones grow and harden.
It is expected that the kids will grow out of the knock knees condition as they keep growing (normally by the age of 6) and they usually do grow out of it. However, in rare cases we see this condition of knock knees seem to go beyond the ages of 5, and in such cases, there is a need for concern.
If the condition proceeds after your child turning 5 years old, you should consult with your pediatrician or physical therapist to see which steps to take to attack the condition.
It is highly likely that they will recommend a pair of good supportive shoes and maybe orthotics (depending on how bad the condition is).
So before you go to your doctor, you can save some time by making sure you are providing your child with the correct type of shoes and the correct shoe size. At the shoe store that I work for, we get referrals by pediatricians and physical therapists all the time to FIT children in the correct pair of shoes.
What Are The Causes of Knock Knees In Kids?
As I said earlier, knock knees in kids are normal as the kids grow from the age of 2 to 5 years. However, there are some conditions that may extend the case of knock knees beyond the usual age it is expected to occur.
In some cases, knock knees can be caused by disease such as rickets, which affects the bone formation. Obesity is another cause for knock knees.
If the kid’s legs fail to straighten as they grow, knock knees might cause pain especially as the kid involve themselves in sports or high intense activities. Please keep in mind that foot and leg pain in children is NEVER normal so in such cases, you should visit your kids pediatrician and have your kids feet checked.
Your pediatrician or physical therapist might advise your child to be fitted in braces and orthotics to support the legs and possibly correct them in time.
Are you a 100% sure that you know your child’s correct foot size? I always recommend parents to take their children to their local children’s shoe store to have their feet properly measured and their shoes properly fitted. The issue is that several parents have contacted me asking where and how they can get their kids’ shoes online, since they don’t have a local shoe store in their area that they trust.
If you don’t have a local children’s shoe store in your area that you trust, you should take a look at an article I wrote where I describe the most simple and effective way to figure out your child’s foot size from home:
Shoes for Knock Knees – The Features!
The shoes that you provide for your kids during their early ages will help promote healthy foot development.
An adequate supportive shoe in the correct size will keep your kids’ feet healthy (prevent the formation of blisters, calluses, or corns), and help your child walk and run straighter.
The type of shoes that we want to provide for a child with knock knees must provide the following features:
- Arch support
- Ankle Support
- Depth (in case we need to fit an orthotic inside the shoe)
In the case of kids that have knock knees, there is a particular shoe style that I have fitted before that has proven to be the most effective one when it comes to helping kids who are experiencing foot and leg pain. This shoe is made by New Balance (the 990 series), and it’s available in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide.
What makes this shoe so special is that it provides arch support, a firm heel counter, and it’s deep enough to FIT an orthotic inside. The shoe is also extremely durable, which is a very important feature to keep in mind since when children have knock knees tend to put pressure in parts of their bodies where they are not supposed to. This normally leads to the shoes wearing out faster than expected.
This won’t happen with this particular shoe style since it is extremely durable, guaranteeing that your child will outgrow the shoes before they are ready to be replaced.
The Best Shoes for Kids with Knock Knees – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Below you can find a selection of the best shoes for children with knock knees. These shoes will fit a child with medium, wide, or extra wide feet (as long as you choose the shoe width accordingly):
This selection of shoes 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 foot measuring scale (Brannock device) in order to allow for growing room.
Do you happen to be dealing with knock knees as well? I created an article where I describe the best women’s shoes and orthotics for knock knees and you can find that article here:
I have seen parents come back to the shoe store to thanks us about the difference the shoes have made in their kids’ daily lives. Please keep in mind that good supportive shoes will work in cases where knock knees are not too exaggerated, and the ankles are not that far apart.
Orthotics for Knock Knees – When the Shoes are Not the Solution!
In extreme cases of knock knees where the ankles are much further apart, your kids may have to wear braces or orthotics to correct the issue, straighten the ankles and reduce or fully eliminate the pain.
If after providing your kids with a pair of supportive shoes their walking pattern doesn’t improve, then I recommend that you try a pair of orthotics. I actually wrote an article that describes the best orthotics for kids with knock knees and you can find it here:
The shoe styles that I recommend will accommodate the braces and orthotics, so you will be able to FIT an orthotic inside the shoe in order to provide support for your kids and keep their feet healthy.
Knock knees should be monitored as early as it starts to develop and when it seems to be getting worse, visit your physical therapist for advice on the steps to take. Knock knees can be very painful and can limit the activities of the kids.
Surgery is usually the last resort to correct this issue if we are not able to correct the way the child walks.
Choosing the correct shoe style will help relive the pain your child might be experiencing and will definitely improve the way your child walks and runs! let’s start taking care of our children’s feet!
Do you have a child who is suffering from knock knees? Have you found a particular shoe style or orthotic that has helped him or her walk and run straighter? Please share your thoughts and experiences below so we can all benefit from them.