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The foot is complex and comprised of 26 bones. The structure of the foot develops fully by around age two, though the bones will not fully develop until around the age of eighteen. This is why it is important to have good footwear early on, so that the bones are allowed to develop naturally.
Babies who haven’t started to walk don’t need shoes. Barefoot is best, but for protection and warmth, socks or slippers are sufficient. A child will stand and walk when their body is strong enough. When your baby is walking 10 -12 steps unaided it’s time to think about footwear.
It’s important that your child is wearing the correct size footwear. All brands fit differently; your child may be a size 10 in one brand and also fit into a size 9 in another, which is why it’s important to have a trained OLLYFIT® specialist assist you when buying footwear.
Some Fitting Guidelines:
- A shoe that is too big may result in tripping, a change to the child’s walking pattern (they tend to grip their toes to keep the shoes on if they are too large), or can cause blisters.
- It is important that the toes have room to lie in their natural position. A shoe that is too wide or narrow can cause discomfort or blisters.
Many toddler shoes do not feature arch support. This is because a child's arch does not start to develop until between the ages of 5-7. Up until that time, the arch is covered by a baby-fat pad and cannot be seen unless the child is sitting or standing on their tippy toes.
Q: What are features of a good New Walker shoe?
A: Shoes should be lightweight, flexible, and made of natural or ‘breathable’ materials. Leather is the best option as it is a very porous material allowing the child’s foot to breathe. Since a child’s foot can sweat up to a ½ pint per day this is very important. Also the shoes must be comfortable. If they need to be ‘broken in’ they are not the right shoes for the child.
Q: When should my baby switch from “Pre-Walker” shoes to New Walker shoes?
A: Soft-soled “Pre-Walker” shoes are generally designed to be used as a foot covering to protect your baby’s feet, or as an accessory to an outfit. First walking shoes are intended to be worn by babies who are able to stand on their own without support or are able to take
10-12 steps unassisted.
The following are signs that may indicate that the child has grown out of their shoes and is ready for a new pair:
- Child begins to take the shoes off as much as possible
- Child’s toes are at the end of the shoes
- Child begins to complain that their feet and/or legs are sore
- Child begins to trip while wearing the shoes
- Child had red marks or blisters appearing on their feet
Children’s feet grow quickly and in spurts. It is important to check your child’s feet and footwear regularly for proper fit and wear. If your little one is being fussy about putting on a shoe it may be their way of saying it’s not fitting well. Check their feet for any redness that may be caused by the shoe being too tight and rubbing. Improperly fitted shoes can hinder a child’s normal growth and comfort. If you are not sure please visit OLLY and our associates will be happy to do a complementary OLLY Fitcheck
OLLY In-Store Fitting Experience
OLLY believes in FIT. We offer the best fit available for each child's foot. There are many manufacturers offering excellent products that address the need of children’s growing feet, however, manufacturers work from their own lasts that do not follow a universal sizing system. Have you noticed that sometimes you might be a size 6 in one brand and a size 7 in another? That some shoes are narrow and others wide but both state a common regular width? So come in to a store near you across the GTA to have your child sized but one of our Fit Certified associates. They will assure all of your fitting needs are met!
For Our Home Sizing Template Click Here
For a Sizing Guide Click Here
Save and print the home sizing template on an 8.5x11 sheet of paper, on "fit to page" setting.
This template is merely a rough estimation of the foot size. It is not a substitute for being sized by one of our OLLYFIT® certified staff members at one of our OLLY Shoe Stores.
If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org