Toddler’s Orthotics – The Best Orthotics for Your Child!
Have you noticed your toddler walking and running differently lately? Has your toddler been diagnosed with flat feet and overpronation? Certain toddler’s orthotics are extremely effective in realigning the feet and improving your toddler’s walking gait and overall posture.
The most common reasons why toddlers need to wear orthotics are:
- Flat Feet
- Rolled Ankles
- Low Muscle Tone
If your toddler has been diagnosed with flat feet, don’t panic, as this condition is more common than you think! It’s totally normal for toddlers to be flat-footed, but most issues arise when toddlers experience overpronation and start putting pressure in areas of their body where they are not supposed, as this usually leads to foot and leg pain.
Several medical professionals such as physical and occupational therapists refer children with flat feet, rolled ankles, low muscle tone, hypermobility, and toe walking to be fitted for supportive shoes and orthotics.
If you’re pressed for time, you can jump directly to the selection of toddler’s orthotics.
Will Your Toddler Have to Wear Orthotics for the Rest of His/Her Lives?
It’s important to understand that if caught at a young age, your toddler might not need to wear orthotics for the rest of his/her life. While we have some teenagers coming to the shoe store who have been wearing orthotics for their whole lives, some children will only have to wear them for a couple of years.
Image of a Toddler with Flat Feet
If you pay close attention, you will notice that when a flat-footed child stands up, their feet collapse, making their legs and feet turn inwards:
As I mentioned before, there is no need to panic. However, this doesn’t mean that you should leave your toddler’s foot conditions untreated.
Once the feet are pronated, the knees and hips also become misaligned. This means the muscles that move those joints no longer work efficiently, and it will take more energy for your toddler to do the same work as other toddlers who don’t have this condition.
Having flat feet, rolled ankles, or low muscle tone doesn’t really change. That’s why it’s important you address these conditions, the sooner the better. Without it, your toddler will continue to fall behind and develop bad habits.
The correct type of orthotics fitted in the correct type of shoes can help straighten your toddler’s feet and legs, allowing your toddler to walk and run straighter. If your toddler is experiencing foot or leg pain the orthotics will help significantly reduce or fully eliminate the pain.
Let me prove it to you!
What a Difference These Toddler’s Orthotics Can Make!
Let’s take a look at a picture of a flat-footed child standing barefoot.
Now let’s take a picture of the same flat-footed child standing in a pair of orthotics. Do you notice how straighter the feet and legs are?
Orthotics are extremely effective in significantly reducing or fully eliminating foot and leg pain, as they are meant to treat foot and leg problems caused by foot abnormalities such as flat feet or feet with high arches.
What Makes the Orthotics I Recommend Effective for Toddlers with Foot Problems?
Not all orthotics are efficient in treating your toddler’s foot conditions. I have found one orthotic that provides excellent arch and heel support, and at the same time is not as invasive as other orthotics. This means that this orthotic allows the child’s foot and leg muscles to develop on their own while supporting them.
I will show you a selection of the best toddler’s orthotics shortly, but let’s first get familiar with what features the orthotics I recommend provide.
Orthotics for Toddlers – The 3 Most Important Features
The orthotic I recommend for toddlers provides the following features:
1️⃣ Arch support: The orthotic has a foam or a visible bump where the arch of your toddler’s foot is supposed to sit. This helps prevent your toddler’s feet from collapsing every time they come in contact with the ground. This feature also minimizes the impact that your toddler’s feet and legs take every time they come in contact with the ground.
2️⃣ Ankle support: The orthotic comes with a sturdy and supportive heel cup in the back. This is where the ankle of your toddler is supposed to sit. Certain toddlers have “rolled ankles”, which means that the bone of the ankle (which is supposed to be straight), turns inwards or outwards. This is fully correctable if the orthotic is fitted in the correct pair of shoes.
3️⃣ Breathable: The orthotic must also be breathable to prevent bacteria from forming inside the shoe.
Now that you know what features the orthotic I recommend provides you are ready to take a look at the best orthotic for toddlers. Disclosure: Some links in this post may be affiliate links and we may receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you) when you click our links and make purchases.
I only write reviews of orthotics and shoe styles that I have fitted before, otherwise, I wouldn’t know how well-made they are, the amount of support that they provide, and how much space they take inside the shoes.
The Best Toddler’s Orthotics
This orthotic has been developed by orthopedic experts and it has been proven to be extremely useful when it comes to the development of children’s feet. The arch support that it provides will keep your toddler’s feet in the correct, naturally balanced position, allowing your toddler to walk and run straighter.
How effective this orthotic will be in realigning your toddler’s feet and improving your toddler’s walking gait will directly depend on individual foot anatomy. Do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about your toddler’s feet or if you need your toddler’s feet evaluated:
What Are Other Families Saying About These Orthotics?
Is Your Toddler Ready to Wear Orthotics? – Let’s Find Out!
First of all, let me clarify that the use of orthotics for toddlers is a very controversial subject that is rarely agreed upon by medical practitioners. My opinion is that orthotics should only be used for toddlers when symptoms related to foot and leg function are evident, and they are experiencing foot or leg pain.
If you believe your toddler might be a candidate for orthotics, I recommend that you consult with your pediatrician or physical therapist to see what steps to take. They will guide you on the next steps and recommend a local shoe store that might be able to help.
I always recommend parents to take their children to their local children’s shoe store that they trust, the issue is that most stores have been closing down and parents end up buying their kids’ shoes online. There is nothing wrong with this, but you must know your child’s exact foot size to know what shoe size to order.
How to Retrieve Your Toddler’s Exact Foot Length and Shape
I created a resource that showcases the best fitting children’s shoe stores by state.
If after looking at that resource you still can’t seem to identify a shoe store in your area, then proceed to take a look at virtual fitting service I created that describes the simplest, yet most effective way to figure out your child’s foot size from home:
In that article I help parents determine their child’s exact foot size and whether the child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet. I also will be able to tell you whether your child has a high instep or not.
Please don’t take your child to be fitted for shoes to places such as Nordstrom’s or Payless, as these are big retailers who have people working for them that don’t know how to fit shoes. I tell you this because I have helped several children that came from those shoe stores wearing the wrong shoe size.
Keep in mind that for your toddler to get the full benefits that the orthotic has to offer, you must provide your toddler with a pair of good, supportive shoes.
What Shoes Work Best with Orthotics?
Orthotics and shoes work together in keeping your toddler’s feet and legs healthy. If you get a good supportive orthotic but it’s fitted in a pair of shoes that are not supportive or the wrong shoe size, your toddler won’t get any of the benefits that the orthotics have to offer.
I have fitted several different types of orthotics for children, and I can tell you with confidence that 90% of the time you will require a wider and deeper shoe to be able to fit the orthotic inside the shoe. Every orthotic fits a little bit differently, but most of them take up a lot of space inside the shoes. Another great feature of these orthotics is how they are designed to mold over time to fit each unique kids’ foot.
I am also going to show you a selection of the best toddler’s shoes for orthotics that provide the following features:
1️⃣ Extra Depth: For the orthotic to fit deeply inside the shoes.
2️⃣ Rounder Toe-Box: To prevent the orthotic from poking a hole in the front of the shoes.
3️⃣ Substantial Outsole: To hold the orthotic in the correct place.
The Best Shoes for Toddlers Who Wear Orthotics
Below you can find a selection of the best shoes for toddlers who wear orthotics. These shoes are available in medium (M), wide (W), and extra wide (XW) widths.
Keep in mind that shoes that come with shoelaces always provide better support and stability than shoes that come with velcro closure. When a toddler needs to wear orthotics inside the shoes, I always recommend parents buy a shoe that comes with shoelaces instead of an alternative closure.
Always remove the original insoles of the shoes before placing the orthotic inside your toddler’s shoes. The main reason for this is that you don’t want the orthotic to raise your toddler’s feet, giving them the impression that their feet are coming out of the shoes.
My coworker who has over 20 years of shoe fitting experience taught me the most effective way to tie shoes with orthotics.
Have you found a particular orthotic that has worked well for your toddler’s feet? Please share your findings below so other families can benefit from your experiences.