Your Questions Answered: Baby's First Shoes

Baby's first shoesWhen you're a first time parent, having a newly walking baby can be quite overwhelming! Although baby walking on their own represents a huge milestone, parents are often consumed with thoughts like when should I put shoes on my baby, what first shoes are best for baby and how long should my baby go without shoes for? We've compiled a list of our most frequently asked questions about baby's first shoes, and have answered them just for you.

 1. What is a pre walker shoe?

Pre walking shoes are typically a baby's first pair of shoes. They are generally soft-soled, flexible and lightweight, as recommended by podiatrists. 

2. What shoes are best for first walkers? 
Pre walking shoes are the best shoes for first walkers. They are generally completely flat, without a groove or arch support, while your baby learns to walk. Keeping your baby's feet completely flat helps stimulate neurones in the brain which aids cognitive and motor skill development.

3. Should babies wear shoes when learning to walk?
Babies should stay barefoot as much as possible when learning to walk. This allows their tactile pathways feel the surface of the ground, which results in the development of strength, spacial orientation, balance, and coordination.

4. When should baby start wearing shoes?
While babies should remain barefoot as much as possible when learning to walk, it is still recommended to protect their feet from harsher environments when walking outside. Pre walking shoes such as Attipas are recommended by podiatrists to ensure babies can still 'feel' the ground while learning to walk.

5. When should I buy my cruising shoes?
The cruising phase is typically the phase before a baby learns to walk without aid, typically from 6 to 12 months of age.  Cruising shoes are essentially pre walking shoes as they allow baby to development naturally and without impairment, and are recommended from 6 months of age and onwards.

6. When should babies wear hard sole shoes? 
Babies and toddlers should not wear hard sole shoes until they are typically 3 to 4 years in age. This is because shoes with a heavy or thick sole block receptors on babies feet which stimulate brain development in a variety of ways.

7. When should I buy first walking shoes? 
First walking shoes are typically the same as pre walking shoes and are recommended from 6 months of age and onwards, depending on your baby's indoor and outdoor activities, surfaces and surrounding climate.

8. What are the sizes for toddler shoes?
Babies and toddler's shoe sizes can vary considerably. As such, answering questions such as what age is size 8 in toddler shoes is quite difficult. We provide an easy, printable size guide here so that parents can measure their children's feet at home. 

9. How do you buy baby's first walking shoes?
Buying baby's first walking shoes online has never been easier. We recommend printing our size guide from home, measuring your baby's feet then visiting our website to ensure you order the correct pair. Gone are the days where you need to drag a screaming toddler to the shops for a fitting! 

10. Do babies really need walking shoes? 
Barefoot walking is best for babies and encouraged as much as possible in the early days to stimulate brain development. However podiatrists still recommend that babies wear suitable pre walking shoes such as Attipas to protect little feet from harsher environments and weather. 

11. Is walking barefoot healthy?
Absolutely! The concept behind barefoot walking is that when a baby is allowed to be barefoot, their tactile pathways feel the surface of the ground, and they development neuromuscular strength, spacial orientation, balance, and coordination. In a nutshell, barefoot is always best when babies learn to walk.

types of shoes for babies learning to walk12. What are the best shoes for learning to walk?
When barefoot walking is not a possibility, we recommend suitable pre walking shoes such as Attipas to ensure that babies development is not impacted in a negative way. Heavy shoes, hard sole shoes or those with an arch or instep are not recommended for babies.

13. What type of shoes are there for babies learning to walk?
There are many types of shoes on the market for babies, however not all shoes are suitable for learning to walk, or deemed safe by podiatrists. Many shoes for babies are designed with aesthetics in mind and do not qualify as suitable first walking shoes. Specific pre walking shoes such as Attipas, that are endorsed by podiatrists, are the best shoes for babies learning to walk.

14. What size is 6-9 months in shoes?
Foot size differs vastly from baby to baby, so it's always best to measure baby's feet using out free, printable size guide here