STOMP! The Benefits of Barefoot for children
‘There’s nothing better for young feet than walking barefoot, whenever it’s safe.
It helps muscles develop, allows the skin to breathe and feeling the ground beneath their feet will help them learn to walk’ – Clarks’
As cute as they are, it turns out modern infant shoes can actually interfere with babies’ feet development, especially as they’re learning how to walk.
The human foot is a complex mechanical structure made up of 26 bones, 33 joints, and over 100 muscles, ligaments and tendons. Babies’ feet are, like their brains, constantly developing, growing and strengthening. Imagine squashing their brain in a leather helmet? No thank you!
For a toddler just learning how to walk (or even roll, play and crawl) shoes can affect how they use the muscles and bones in their feet.
“Toddlers keep their heads up more when they are walking barefoot.
The feedback they get from the ground means there is less need to look down, which is what puts them off balance and causes them to fall down”, says podiatrist, Tracy Byrone.