Have you always wondered what the difference between wide and extra wide width shoes is? I noticed several parents say that their kids’ have wide feet when their kids feet are actually extra wide! Just so you know, there is a big difference between wide and extra wide width shoes!
Did you know that extra wide width shoes existed? They are not just available in everyday sneakers or running shoes, but also in soccer and baseball cleats, dress shoes, and sandals!
Have you ever worn shoes that pinched your feet? If you have, then you probably know how bad and uncomfortable this can be for your feet. Shoes are available in different widths for a reason! Wide width shoes can definitely help children whose feet are wider than others, but some children who have foot problems such as blisters, bunions, or corns, will benefit also from an extra wide shoe that will reduce or eliminate abnormal pressures involved in these foot conditions. Children who wear orthotics might also require an extra wide width shoe!
Shoe fitters will be able to tell you whether your child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet.It is always important to take your kids’ to your local kids’ shoe store so they can have their feet properly measured and their shoes properly fitted.
Did you know that the biggest mistake parents make when buying shoes for their kids’ is purchasing longer shoes in an attempt to compensate for the width? Many parents don’t even know that shoes come in different widths, and when they are trying a pair of shoes that is too narrow for their kids’ feet, they think that all they need to do is get a longer size so the shoe can fit their kids’ feet.
You must STOP doing that! This will end up compromising your kids’ stability, and will create several foot and leg problems!
Let me explain this further with an example: Let’s say you measure your kids’ feet and he measures a shoe size of 9. You try the shoe size 9 and the shoe is perfect in length, but too tight around the small toe area. The parent then decides to try the shoe in a half a size or a whole size bigger in order to relieve the pressure from the narrow width! Now, the child stopps complaining about the shoes being too tight in the width area, but there is too much extra space in the front of the shoe! This will end up compromising your child’s stability and cause our child to fall and trip when he or she walks or runs.
The parent then decides to keep the same size 9 shoe size, but tries them in a wide width. However, the shoe is still putting a lot of pressure around the small toe area.
So…What do you do?
It’s simple, try the shoe in an extra wide width! If the shoe doesn’t come in extra wide, then it’s just not the right shoe style for your child! Find another shoe style that comes in extra wide, and you will see how it’s possible to keep the same shoe length, and relieve the pressure from the widest part of the foot at the same time!
I have been fitting children’s shoes for over 7 years, and I know exactly which shoe styles fit best for a child who has wide or extra wide feet. We fit a lot of children with extra wide feet, and stock every style that shoe companies make in extra wide!
In this post, I will describe the best shoe styles that come in wide and extra wide widths!
Does Your Child Has Wide Or Extra Wide Feet? – Learn The Secret!
While most people believe that there are two elements to shoe sizing: shoe length and shoe width, they forget another important and crucial factor you want to consider if you want to get the correct shoe size for your child: The instep of the foot!
Did you know that if your child has a medium width foot with a high instep then they might need a wider shoe? I know this might sound confusing, but I explain how to tell if your child has a high instep in more detail this post. I also describe which shoes fit the shape of their feet better:
There is no magical table or scale that will tell you exactly which shoe width your child needs. While I can’t precisely tell you if your child has wide or extra wide feet, I CAN confidently tell you if the shoes that your child is wearing are too narrow.
Take a look at the picture below, do you notice how there is a bump around the widest part of the shoe? That is your child’s small toe feeling increase pressure by the other toes pushing against the shoe. This means that the shoe is too narrow for your kids’ feet and you will have to try the shoes in a different width or a different shoe style.
In the second picture, we can see the same shoe style, but in a wide width. Notice how the small toe is not feeling as much pressure in the medium width shoe, but we can still notice a small bump pressing against the shoe. This means that the shoe is still too narrow, and will end up creating a blister on your kids’ small toe!
In the third picture, we have the same shoe style but in an extra wide width. Notice how the pressure on the small toe has been completely eliminated, since we can’t see a bump anymore. This is the correct shoe width for your child!
Now that you know how to check for the width of your kids’ shoes, below you can find a selection of the best fitting shoes for kids’ that come in wide and extra wide widths!
The shoes in the first-row fit “short”,which means that you need to go a whole size longer of the size that your child measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.
The shoes in the second-row 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 shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.
The best way to tell if your child has a wide or an extra wide width foot is to have his or her feet properly measured at your kids’ local shoe store. However, if you don’t have a local shoe store in your area that you trust, I provided you with a set of guidelines that explain how you can tell if your child needs wide or extra wide shoes. Several parents have asked me where they can get their kids’ shoes online. Amazon offers the best selection and the best prices by far the when it comes to kids’ shoes. I explain this in more detail here:
What is the difference between a shoe that comes in wide width and a shoe that comes in extra wide width? I took a picture of the insert of a wide shoe and an insert of an extra wide shoe (same shoe length), so you can see the difference yourself! Do you see the difference? There is a big difference, so start providing your kids’ with the correct shoe width!
The Best Shoe Brands For Kids With Wide And Extra Wide Feet!
When a child has extra wide feet, 90% of the time I end up fitting them in a pair of New Balance shoes. There are different shoe brands that make wide and extra wide shoes for children, and you have probably heard of them before:
- New Balance
- Stride Rite
When a child has really wide feet, I always feel more comfortable fitting them in a pair of New Balance sneakers. You are probably wondering why New Balance? since there are other shoe brands that make shoes in wide and extra widths!
New Balance shoes tend to have the widest, roundest toe-boxes! They also tend to be deeper than the other shoe brands, which means that your kids’ feet will fit deeper inside the shoe.
Take a look at the picture below where we have two different shoe styles, one from New Balance (left picture), and the other one from Saucony (right picture). These shoes are of the same length and the same width (they are both extra wide), but notice how the New Balance shoe is so much wider than the other one! Can you see how the toe-box of the shoe is rounder and wider?
This is the number 1 reason why I always end up fitting children with really extra wide feet in New Balance shoes. Also, if they wear orthotics, this is the to go to shoe brand for them!
Socks For Children With Wide Feet? – Magical Socks!
If your child has wide or extra wide feet, it is important to get them socks that stretch nicely that are also seamless, that way they won’t put any extra pressure on their toes and their toes can move freely. These socks also work great for children with sensory issues who feel every bump and lump in their socks, and have the hardest time keeping their shoes on!
If you are always fighting your child to put and keep his socks on, you need to read this post where I explain the best seamless socks for kids in more detail! You can find that post here:
I have equipped you with some good information about the difference between wide and extra wide shoes for kids’, and I also described the best shoe styles for a child who has wide and extra wide feet. Now you also recognze the importance of wearing the correct type of socks!
STOP getting shoes for your children that are too narrow and START taking care of their feet!
Does your child have really wide or extra wide feet? Have you found a particular brand or shoe style that works better for his or her feet? Please share your thoughts and experiences so we can all benefit from them!