Baby development

Ask Dr. Dina: What should I look for in baby walking shoes?

Is your baby starting to walk, but you're not sure which kicks are best? Dr. Dina Kulik outlines what to consider before getting baby walking shoes.

Baby taking first steps in baby walking shoes with dad

Photo: iStockphoto

I’m ready to buy my baby her first pair of shoes. What should I look for?

Once your kid is steady on her feet and walking on her own, it’s best to get her into sturdy and supportive shoes. Early walkers are active, so you’ll want baby walking shoes with good shock absorption and durable soles. Whether your child is a pre-walker or walking unsupported, it’s best for her to be barefoot when possible—let her bones develop the way they were meant to, without any restrictions. Shoes should be reserved for when you are outside. Because kids grow so fast, it’s tempting to take hand-me-downs. But when it comes to footwear, I recommend buying new, as the shape of the shoe is changed by the previous owner. Shoes should fit with enough room to grow while still being snug enough to prevent the feet from sliding forward. It’s best to have your child’s feet measured professionally about every six months during these early growing stages.

Read more:
How coffee tables and chairs can help your baby learn to walk
Why some babies skip the crawling stage
What to do when your toddler is a late walker

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