With the upcoming back-to-school season in both in-person and at-home situations, it's very often to buy sneakers for the kids to give them some comfort. However, we are committing a big mistake that directly affects the health of their feet. Stay with us to learn more about it.
The main issue is that we fit our children every day with athletic shoes. A study conducted by the University of Jaen in Andalucia, Spain, showed a few years ago that using sports shoes modifies the tread pattern in minors between 3 and 16 years old, altering the foot's position towards less healthy postures from a biomechanical point of view.
Photo by Amanda Belec on Unsplash
Here are the most important findings of the research:
- Age, sex, and wearing athletic footwear affect the footprint patterns during running from early age to adolescence.
- At preschool ages, the prevalence of heel strike is much lower than in adolescence. It happens similarly to adults.
- Between the ages of 3 and 6 years, 46% of the children presented a delayed-type of contact with the ground in their stride, as they supported the heel before the rest of the sole. In adolescents, this percentage rises to 92%.
- The deterioration of the footstep increases with age, so the use of sports shoes is considered the main reason for this alteration.
Photo by Ben Weber on Unsplash
Some practical tips to take action!:
Avoid the use of sports shoes and go for footwear that supports your feet but without excessive pressure or compression, as this is essential to prevent the appearance of blisters or rubbing.
It should be breathable footwear made of quality materials, not plastic ones that don't help transpiration.
Choose flexible footwear, so the foot can make movements when walking that help us avoid overloads or other injuries.
- Children between 3 and 16 years of age walk barefoot as long as possible, as this helps their footprint pattern to remain for a longer time.
- Find the way to prevail the most natural and, therefore, healthiest walking pattern.
- In an adult, the tread pattern may now be delicate, and if we were to run barefoot, we would have a high risk of injury.
- And please always keep in mind that not all footwear is suitable for all children. The needs of younger children are not the same as those of older ones. For example, at the beach, you can wear closed-toe fabric shoes or leather sandals and caged flat sandals in areas such as swimming pools.
We hope this information is helpful so we can always strive to assist you in taking care of your family's health from head to toe.! Have a great week, and we look forward to seeing you in our next article.