Development of children’s feet

Children’s feet differ from those of adults, as they are not yet fully formed. At six months of age the foot is still mostly cartilage; in fact, the last bone doesn’t begin to form until children are about three years old. By 18 years, most of the bones are fully formed.

Baby feet only need protection in the cooler weather. Grow suits with feet, socks or small, soft natural fibre shoes should be used to keep little feet warm and should always be loose around your baby’s feet.

Making time for your baby to kick freely will help with the development of the muscles in the legs and feet.




Children usually begin to walk at any time between 10 and 20 months of age. It is important to remember that each child is unique and will move through the developmental stages at their own pace. Children also roll, crawl, walk and run in their own time; there is no evidence to support the view that the use of Jolly Jumpers or baby walkers will help this to happen early. These types of equipment may put additional pressure on feet that are not yet ready for taking weight.

When your child first begins to walk, shoes should only be used when protection is needed from the ground. Allowing children to go barefoot or to wear very soft shoes helps the foot to typically develop and assists in strengthening muscles.


儿童通常在10到20个月之间开始行走。重要的是要记住每个孩子是独特的,他们会以自己的步伐经历发展阶段。孩子们也会在自己的时间里翻滚、爬行、行走和奔跑;没有证据支持认为使用Jolly Jumpers或婴儿车能够帮助孩子们提前行走。这些类型的设备可能会给那些还没有准备好承重的脚施加额外的压力。


Children under the age of three may sometimes walk on their tip toes and this is a typical developmental stage. Any child over the age of three and still walking on their tip toes (toe walking) should be assessed by a podiatrist.


Growing feet

A child’s foot grows in length and changes in shape with growth. Arch development is an individual thing and arch height or a lack of an arch does not always indicate that a child will have problems with their feet. If your child has pain or has one flat foot that differs from the other foot, a podiatrist can assist.

Due to rapid growth in length and width while young, frequent changes in the size of shoes and socks may be necessary. Do a size check at least every one to three months up to the age of three, every four months up to the age of five and every six months from five years.





Heel pain

Heel pain may also occur in growing children, usually between the ages of 8-14, and may be worse during or straight after sporting activities.

If your child is experiencing pain at the back of the heel that has limited their activity or causes them to limp, a podiatrist can help. Your podiatrist will be able to determine whether or not the heel pain is related to the developmental process and give advice about ways to alleviate symptoms.





Feet First Podiatry

Children's Footwear

Shoes should, above all, protect your children’s feet.

Fitting footwear:

  • Always have both feet measured for length and width.
  • The shoe should fit the natural shape of the foot, especially around the toes.
  • The toe of the shoe should allow toes to move freely and not be squashed from the top or the sides. Make sure there is about 1cm growing room for children between the end of the longest toe and the end of the shoe.
  • Shoes should fit comfortably around the heel and not be too loose or too tight.
  • Having shoes fitted by a store that offers trained assistants can help ensure the correct size and shape to keep little feet running and jumping.


Professional advice
A check-up with a podiatrist is recommended if:

  • You notice uneven shoe wear
  • You notice any skin rashes, hard skin, lumps or bumps on your child’s feet
  • Your child complains of recurrent pain in the feet and/or legs which also increases with activity
  • Your child is constantly tripping or falling
  • Your child walks on their tip toes
  • Your child’s walk does not look symmetrical (or the same on both feet and legs).
  • Or you have any other concerns about your child’s feet.


  • 总是应该测量两只脚的长度和宽度。
  • 鞋子应该符合脚的自然形状,特别是脚趾周围。
  • 鞋子的脚趾部分应该让脚趾自由移动,不会从顶部或侧面挤压。确保儿童的鞋子最长的脚趾和鞋子的末端之间留有约1厘米的生长空间。
  • 鞋子应该舒适地贴合脚后跟,不应太松或太紧。
  • 由提供训练有素的助理的商店为孩子试穿鞋子可以帮助确保正确的尺寸和形状,让小脚跑来跳去。



  • 发现鞋子磨损不均匀
  • 发现孩子的脚上出现任何皮肤疹子、硬块或隆起
  • 孩子反复抱怨脚和/或腿疼痛,这种疼痛会随着活动加重
  • 孩子经常绊倒或摔倒
  • 孩子踮着脚走路
  • 孩子的行走姿势看起来不对称(或两只脚和腿看起来不同)
  • 或者您对孩子的脚有其他担忧。

Sometimes children walk with their feet pointed inwards (in-toeing) or outwards (out-toeing). In most cases, these variations in walking are normal. Most children will grow out of these walking styles by the age of two; however it can sometimes take until the age of 12. If your child is not keeping up with their friends, a podiatrist may be able to assist.

有时候孩子行走时脚会向内或向外转 (内旋或外旋)。在大多数情况下,这种步态变化是正常的。大多数孩子在两岁时就会摆脱这种步态,不过有时候需要等到12岁。如果你的孩子跟不上朋友的节奏,足病专家可能能够提供帮助。