Why Won’t My Child Keep his Shoes On? – Stop the Constant Battle!

Did you know that the number one reason why children won’t keep their shoes on is that the shoes that they are wearing are either too narrow or too short? When kids start pulling their shoes off it’s time to check what might be wrong with the shoes. One of the most common questions parents ask me at the shoe store where I work is: Why won’t my child keep his shoes on?

Is Your Child Trying to Tell You Something?

I have found that children who are constantly taking their shoes off are trying to tell us something. That something may be that the shoes are too tight and pinching their toes. I will show you how to figure out your child’s exact foot size from home and make sure that your child is wearing the correct type of shoes.

Are your kids curling their toes every time you try to put the shoes on? Just when you think that you have finally won the battle and they have their shoes on, they kick them right off! Let’s take a look at the following scenario:

You took your kids to your local kid’s shoe store to be properly fitted for shoes, you got their feet measured, you found a pair of soft and flexible shoes, you chose the cutest style, and now… your kids won’t keep their shoes on!

The issue is that most of the time your kids won’t be able to express why they are experiencing discomfort. I can guarantee you that most of the time it is because the shoes are too short or too narrow for your kids’ feet.

How to Prevent Your Child From Taking the Shoes Off

1️⃣ The first step is to make sure that the shoes are fitting correctly. Remember that babies and toddlers tend to have wide or extra wide feet, and getting the correct shoe width is just as important as getting the correct shoe length.

2️⃣ If your child is wearing the correct shoe size but insists on taking his or her shoes off, then it might be time to provide your child with a pair of lace up sneakers. These sneakers are harder for your child to take off and with time, they will eventually get used to wearing shoes.

It is always harder to fit baby shoes because we cannot get any feedback from them, while older children can express their discomfort and show us exactly where the shoes are bothering them.

The simple fact of providing your kids with the correct shoes will help keep their feet and legs healthy, and it will end up saving you a lot of money in the years to come.

You might think that you have it all figured out, and that your child is definitely wearing the correct shoe size, but think again.

Shoes come in all different widths, and children’s feet come in different shapes such as narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet.

Some children might even have a high instep, and this requires a deeper shoe. Do you know what the instep of the foot is? The instep is the top part of the foot, and when it’s high, there is the need to find a deeper shoe to prevent the top part of your child’s foot to rub against the top part of the shoes. I will explain this in more detail shortly.

Are You 100% Sure of Your Child’s Foot Size?

Now, several parents have contacted me asking me how they can figure out their child’s foot size from home to be able to order their kids’ shoes online. I always explain to them that is always better to have their kids’ feet measured at the local shoe store that they trust.

If you don’t have a shoe store in your area, then you can take a look at an article I created where I describe 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.

Remember that if your kids’ shoes are not fitted properly, you are putting your child at risk of developing serious foot issues such as blisters, calluses, and corns.

By now you should know your child’s exact foot size, so we can move forward and make sure that your child is wearing the correct type of shoes.

Finding the Perfect Pair of Shoes for Your Child – Learn the Secret

There are 3 main points to take into consideration when you are trying to find the perfect pair of shoes for your child:

1️⃣ The amount of growing room you should leave inside the shoe. We want some growing room in the shoes but not so much that we would compromise the child’s stability. You should allow approximately 3/16 of an inch or 0.4 centimeters of space between the longest toe and the end of the shoes.

2️⃣ The width of the shoe. Remember: shoes come in medium (M), wide (W), and extra wide (XW) widths. Your child’s toes should never overlap each other or rub against the side of the shoes.

3️⃣ The instep of the foot. I can guarantee that 8 out of 10 parents don’t know what the instep of the foot is. Fitting the instep of the foot is just as important as getting the correct shoe length. The instep is the top part of your kids’ feet, and I have fitted hundreds of children with high insteps in the correct type of shoes. A wider and deeper shoe is usually required to prevent the instep from rubbing against the top of the shoe.

Below is an example of a child’s foot with a high instep. When children have high insteps, there is a lot of extra foot volume that needs to be fitted inside of the shoes:

If you found that the problem with your kids’ shoes was that they were too narrow or too shallow, take a look at a selection of the best shoes that provide rounder toe-boxes and extra depth.

The Most Comfortable Kids’ Shoes

These shoes can fit children with medium (M), wide (W), or extra wide (XW) feet. 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.

Are Any Other Shoe Choices Available?

If you have an older child who keeps taking his or her shoes off don’t hesitate to contact me directly and I will send you specific shoe recommendations:

[email protected] 

 My Child Curls His/Her Toes Every Time I Try To Put The Shoes On!

Here are some proven tricks that you can try to put your kids’ shoes on more easily:

  • Tickle your child’s feet before putting the shoes on.
  • Distract them with a toy or a treat before putting the shoes on.
  • Sit together and play a game where mom and dad take their shoes off and put them on again.

Some children can’t stand the way shoes or socks feel on their feet, even the seams of the socks can really put them in a bad mood. There are certain socks that are seamless and provide more comfort to your child’s feet.

Socks also play a key role in keeping your kids’ feet comfortable and healthy. Did you know that getting the correct size and type of sock for your child is equally important as getting the correct shoe size?

Let me show you the most common reasons why your child is probably not keeping his/her shoes on, and I will also provide you with a selection of the most comfortable shoes for children that are available in different widths.

Don’t Forget About the Socks! – The Most Comfortable Kids’ Socks

As I previously mentioned, socks play a key role in the way shoes feel. I always recommend seamless socks for babies and toddlers, since they allow them to easily stretch and move their toes freely without any restrictions.

Have you noticed how babies are always wiggling their toes? This is their way of strengthening their feet, hence the importance of shoes that are wide enough and socks that don’t restrict toe movement.

Shoes and socks work together in keeping your kids’ feet healthy. While I can’t get into too much detail in this article about which are the best children’s socks, you should take a look at another article I wrote where I describe the best seamless socks for kids and the best places where you can find them.

Stop the struggle with your child every time is time to put the shoes on! Make sure they are wearing the correct shoe and sock size, and you will see what a huge difference it makes.

Is your child refusing to wear shoes and repeatedly taking them off?  Do you know any tricks to make it easier to get the shoes on? Please share your thoughts and experiences below so we can all benefit from them!