Development of the child's feet


How much (and how fast) children's feet grow
Every child is different and grows at their own individual pace. Children's feet often grow in spurts and can grow by as much as 15 mm within a six-month period. That is why it is important to keep an eye on and measure your child's feet at regular intervals. We recommend checking their foot length every two months until the age of 2 and every three months between the ages 3 to 6.

Here is how children's feet typically develop and how often you should measure their foot length:
• A child's foot grows approximately 2 cm a year between ages 0-2 - measure their foot length every 2 months.
• A child's foot grows approximately 1.5 cm a year between ages 2-5 - measure their foot length every 3 months.
• A child's foot grows approximately 1 cm a year between ages 6-11 - measure their foot length every 6 months.

Development of a child's foot between the ages 0-2
From the time your child is born until around the time they hit the age of 2, their little feet are soft and flexible. It is completely normal for the child to have a so-called 'fat pad' under the arch of the foot during these years.
Children at this stage sense a lot with their feet, which is why it is important that your child is given the opportunity to feel different types of surfaces and touch their own feet and gets a foot rub every now and the. The musculature of the feet must be allowed to develop correctly, which is why it is a good idea to allow your child to walk around in socks or barefoot.

The first steps
Children between the ages 0-2 should only start wearing shoes once they have learned to walk. Until then, socks and slippers should suffice. Once your child is on the verge of taking their first few steps, it may be helpful to give him or her a pair of soft and flexible first walker shoes to help support their footing.

The first pair of shoes
The first pair of shoes should be without arch support so that the big toe extends naturally from the metatarsal bones. As the child walks, their foot will move up and forwards over the big toe, while the other toes help control the foot. If the shoes have arch support, this will prevent the foot from moving in the way described above and can contribute to a passive foot musculature. The toddler's foot arch begins to develop as the fat pad disappears as a result of the foot moving up and forwards over the big toe when walking and running. The first pair of shoes need to be light-weight with a solid heel cap and should fit snugly around the foot. They need to have an appropriate amount of space for the toes and must have flexible soles that allow the foot to move naturally. The shoes should be either lace-up or have Velcro closures, allowing adjustments to be made over the instep thereby adapt the fit of the shoe to the child's foot.

Development of a child's foot between the ages 2-3
Around the age of 3, the foot is still flexible and soft, but the muscles and arch begin to manifest in earnest around this time. It becomes more narrow and starts to look more like a fully-developed foot.