Nothing is more exciting than when your baby takes their first steps. While most baby shoes are purely decorative, your needs change when your child becomes mobile. Suddenly, they need shoes that are comfortable and practical for walking as well as footwear that will keep their feet safe. If you find yourself searching for baby shoes for your new walker, keep reading for the top features to look for in first-time walker shoes.
When your baby is just learning to walk, they need shoes that can mimic the natural movement of their foot. Shoes that are too tight or rigid can make it difficult for them to balance or hinder their movement. Flexible shoes are also more comfortable and less likely to rub blisters while they learn to walk. Make sure you can pinch the material on top of their feet to ensure the shoe is not too tight or restricting.
Clunky shoes may look cute, but they are difficult for babies to walk in. Consider your baby’s height and weight as well as their growing muscles and bones when shoe shopping. They are not able to carry around heavy shoes and will have difficulties picking up their feet or staying balanced. Lightweight materials make it easier for your baby to walk and less likely to fall in the process.
Comfort is key for baby shoes. When shopping for shoes for your first-time walker, make sure the material is breathable. Mesh or knit fabrics allow for airflow that can keep your baby’s feet from getting sweaty and uncomfortable. Stiffer materials, like hard leather or thick canvas, can hinder the growth of your child’s feet and delay their development.
Learning to walk is hard enough, but it is even more difficult if their shoes are slippery. You can help your baby learn to walk and keep them safe by purchasing shoes with grippy bottoms. The added traction of grooves help your child grip, even on smooth surfaces. Look for rubber or leather soles that can help your baby stay balanced.
No bells or whistles
Your child’s first pair of walking shoes does not need to come with ankle supports or other corrective features. Special arches or inserts can damage your child’s foot because their muscles are still developing. They need to be able to strengthen their ankles and muscles on their own, without the help of corrective features.
Your child will go through pairs of shoes quickly, so it is best to avoid spending a lot of money on each pair. The best quality baby shoes are not always the ones with the highest price tags. You can find reasonably priced pairs of shoes for your first-time walker that provide the safety and comfort they need while learning to walk.
The perfect fit
Unfortunately, your baby cannot tell you if their shoes are too loose or too tight. If they are wearing the wrong sized shoes, they may be left uncomfortable or crying in pain, or they could injure themselves falling down. You can check the fit of their shoes with the length test. Make sure you can press your thumb between their big toe and the end of their shoe. This ensures they have enough room for comfort but not too much room to drag their toes.
Check their feet
When you’ve found a pair of shoes that meets the qualifications above, you should still check your baby’s feet from time to time. When you remove their shoes, make sure there are no red marks that indicate a bad fit. Also, check when they walk to ensure their toes are not dragging on the ground or the heels of their shoes are sliding.
Consult the experts
When in doubt, you can turn to the experts for advice. The American Academy of Pediatrics provides guidelines for shoes for first-time walkers, including safety tips for your baby on the move. If you are unsure about the development of your baby’s feet or how their shoes impact their walking, you can always consult your child’s doctor.
Where to purchase the best baby shoes for new walkers
Searching for shoes for first-time walkers can be stressful. You want to provide your baby with the best, but you don’t know where to start. Mémoire Kids crafts shoes for babies and toddlers using the most comfortable and breathable materials. The easy slip-on shoes from Mémoire Kids protect your baby’s feet while allowing them to develop and grow. Visit Mémoire Kids today to find the perfect shoes for your new walker!