How often Should Kids get new Shoes

14 Dec How often Should Kids get new Shoes

Time for New Shoes for Children’s Feet

Your children grow up quickly, and their feet grow right along with them. If you’re not sure how often your kids need new shoes, this guide will help.


Your children’s feet grow the fastest during their early years. Up to age three, your child’s shoe size may change three or four times. Fortunately, since toddlers don’t spend much time wearing shoes, you probably don’t need more than one pair at a time.

What kind of shoes should your little one wear? Look for shoes that are soft, comfortable, and have sturdy soles. Shoes with traction are a good idea for unsteady young walkers.

It’s actually best for your child to go barefoot as much as possible. Going barefoot allows your little one’s feet and bones to grow naturally. Your child should wear shoes when they go outside or walk on a rough surface. Otherwise, it’s healthiest to leave those feet free. This will hold true until your child is about six.


Image of kids feet on fence - Children's Foot Doctor in Sterling VA


Ages 6 to 9

Your child’s feet continue to grow quickly during these years. You may find your child’s shoe size changes every six months. At this age, your children are usually very active. They run, jump and climb. They’re also more likely to have some falls and tumbles.

Good shoes are a must during these years. Sturdy, supportive sneakers will keep them running all day.


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Ages 9 to 12

As your children reach adolescence, you’ll see ongoing size changes. Your children may still be very active, but they’re probably focused on sports or exercise rather than playing. They may be on organized sports teams or in training for a solo sport.

Their feet will change size once or twice during these years. You may need to replace sports shoes more often than that, however. Athletic activity can wear shoes out, and poorly fitting shoes can be dangerous.

Ages 12 to 17

There won’t be many changes during these years. Check your child’s shoe size every six months to be on the safe side. If your child plays sports, check their shoes often for signs of wear.

After the age of 18, your child’s shoe size will remain stable for some time. Feet keep changing in size throughout your adult life, but it’s a slower process.

Tips for Buying Kids’ Shoes

  • Measure both feet. Most of us have one foot that’s a little larger than the other. Be sure the shoes fit both feet comfortably. Shoes with laces or straps are adjustable. They can help you get the right fit on mismatched feet.
  • Buy shoes that feel good. The idea of “breaking in” shoes is a myth. Shoes should be comfortable to wear the first time you take them out of the box. That’s especially true for children, who can suffer adult-sized foot problems like bunions and hammertoes if they wear poorly fitting shoes.
  • Check the heel. Children’s shoes should have a sturdy, well-constructed heel. The heel should fit snugly but comfortably. This is key to giving children stability when they walk.
  • Choose shoes that tie. Slip-on shoes may not be secure enough for children. Choose shoes with laces, straps, or buckles.


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Keep Your Children’s Feet Healthy With Our Help

If you have questions or concerns about your child’s feet, contact Shuman Podiatry & Sports Medicine. Our family-friendly clinic welcomes children with all foot problems. Call us today for an appointment.

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