Ill-fitting children’s shoes can lead to foot-deformities and other serious health-issues. Children’s feet need room to grow. However, up to 50 percent of all children are wearing shoes that are too small. When they grow, up only one third have healthy feet. The most common cause of this is wearing shoes that are too small for their feet. Often, children don’t feel when the shoe is pressing against their toes.
Easy Home Measurement
Or use this printable Shoe-Size Chart for foot-measuring. Just save/download it and make sure your printer settings are on 100% in order to have the proper scale.
Unsure about your child’s shoe size ? Watch this video to see different methods of measuring and sizing your children’s feet.
Kids Shoe Sizes (Babies)
Babies usually start walking from 10 to 18 months. Indoors, shoes are unnecessary. Instead, let them walk barefoot or in non-slip socks. This helps strengthen the developing muscles.
Outdoors, however, babies’ feet should be protected with flexible, lightweight shoes, preferably of a natural and breathable mix of materials like cotton/wool and leather.
Have your child’s feet professionally measured regularly, as feet grow very fast in the first one and half years. Remember: poorly fitting shoes can cause irreversible damage. Check below chart for baby shoe-sizes by age and foot length.
Kids Shoe Sizes (Toddlers)
Use this conversion chart for toddlers between one and three years of age.
Big Kids Shoe Sizes (Y)
Shoe sizes for bigger kids between seven and 12 years of age.
Use adult sizes if feet are bigger than 8.5” (girls) or 9.5” (boys).
The growth of children’s feet is not only very individual, but also very rapid. Children’s feet, “especially infants and toddlers”, can grow up to one inch a year !
(Important) : Prefabricated shoe size charts don’t necessarily match the development curve of your child’s feet ! It is better to measure the size of the feet and then convert, (Babies-/Kids-/Teens-Sizes), rather than to rely on an average shoe size by age chart. Use data from kids shoe size chart by age only as an approximate !
What is the perfect shoe size for my child ?
The appropriate shoe should be longer by about one inch based on the inner measurement of the larger foot. If you deviate from this value and try on smaller shoes, you may have to buy new shoes for your child again soon. It is best to buy shoes in the afternoon, because feet become wider and longer than they are in the morning. Also, different manufacturers have very different sizing. Try several models with your child and let the salesperson carry out an additional indoor measurement.
Shoe Measurement Devices for Kids
If there are no specialist shops in your area and you prefer to buy online, an inner shoe measuring instrument is a good alternative to measurement in specialized shops. The price ranges from 10-15 $. This money is well invested, because you’ll get to know the exact inner shoe-size.
Sizing Guide: How much Space do little Toes need ?
Children’s shoes should fit well. Most parents act in an exemplary manner when buying children’s shoes and especially look for enough “wiggle room” for the toes in the shoe. But did you know, however, that at least 0.5 – 0.7 inches (12 to 17 millimetres) should be added to foot length? That is how much space your child’s foot needs to be able to roll in the shoe while walking and running around.
Whoever thinks that shoe size information on shoes is always right, is wrong. There are no mandatory standardizations on which manufacturers have to orient themselves, which leads to significant deviations of up to 1.5 numbers. 91% of the shoe sizes indicated do not match the internal length of the shoe and are smaller. Therefore, parents cannot rely on the correct indication of shoe sizes and must instead ensure that they take measurements themselves. Even if the shoe looks sweet and is the correct size according to the manufacturer, that doesn´t mean that the shoe is the right choice for your child.
What Kind of Shoe is Right for my Child ?
Stiff shoes – an ordeal for feet : It is not only small shoes, but also stiff ones which hinder the development process of a child’s foot. Whether your child’s foot can be forced into the shoe is not a criterion because their feet are so soft and malleable that they fit in almost every shoe. Consequential damage such as sinking and bending feet occur as a result, as well as postural defects and back injuries. Children’s shoes should not hinder your child’s footsteps, but leave free space for their feet to move.
Children’s Feet are Less Sensitive
Whoever wears shoes that are too small can damage their feet. Children’s feet in particular, need enough space to develop well, because they are in a process of growth. Children’s feet are the basis of their physiology and must be able to keep up with the whole day’s activities, whether it’s while they’re romping around, playing or sleeping.
Children’s feet are still very soft and much more mobile. At the same time, they are significantly less sensitive than adult feet. The entire functional capacity of a child’s foot is only reached after several years. This also has an effect on the child’s load-bearing behavior of shoes. Children do not feel it when the shoe is too small. “On the contrary” – if the child pushes forward, the toes are often still drawn in. Usually kids would force their little foot into the shoe without feeling that the first signs of damage are already taking their course.
Over 50% of children wear small shoes. Do not rely on how your child feels in the shoe, but rather on measurements. Check the measurement results regularly, because children’s feet grow up to three sizes per year.