Children will walk independently in their own time and when nature intended. Early walkers encourage joints to take load earlier than intended and children's feet and lower limb to move in an unnatural walking pattern. Also it is more difficult for the child to develop normal Proprioception "feel of the ground".
Research has shown the use of early walkers is associated with a delay in normal walking and activities such as standing and crawling. Their use is best avoided, at Giggle Kids Shoes we DO NOT carry early walkers we recommend a pair of silicone grip sox.
As a guide a child should be fitted with their first pair of shoes around 6 weeks of walking, this is only a guide at Giggle Children's Shoes we will advise whether it is the right time for the first pair of shoes.
A baby's foot is not simply a smaller version of an adult's. At birth the 26 bones that will eventually make up the adult foot are mostly cartilage making them pliable and therefore susceptible to damage. To allow your baby's feet to develop naturally without being distorted, always:
Keep bedclothes loose fitting and light so the feet are not restricted.
Encourage your baby to exercise its feet by kicking and similar actions. This will help develop the foot muscles.
Don't force a child into walking. They will start when ready, which can be anytime between 10 and 18 months.
Encourage your child to walk barefoot indoors as this allows the foot to develop and strengthen.
Once walking is established, children are ready for their first shoes. Always ensure that shoes are purchased in a reputable shoe shop, where children's feet are measured and the fit of the shoes is checked by experienced Shoe Fitters.
Inspect your child's feet regularly, at least every bath time, as children often can't feel any damage being done. Look for abnormalities such as cuts, breaks in the skin and any unusual changes in colour or temperature.
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