Children's feet need attention!
A personal experience led ME & Friends AG to include children's shoes in its product range. This is one of the reasons why this product category is still a matter close to the company's heart.
The two managing directors and husband and wife, Alexia and Michael Ertl, were diagnosed with "possible sickle foot development" after the birth of their second child.
Due to the company's own quality leadership in the field of functional health shoes and the desire to be able to use this expertise to help one's own child, the idea was born to develop a collection of children's shoes that would support children's feet in their natural development and prevent foot ailments and possible malpositions.
This has resulted in a small and already awarded shoe collection (AGR seal 2015), which was developed by "big ones" for the "little ones".
Children's feet: a miracle of development
Children's feet are soft and initially still very flexible. They are well protected by a thick cushion of fat. Usually before the age of one, children's feet can bear the entire weight of our little ones and enable them to stand and walk for the first time.
The little feet develop rapidly, because they are a miracle of nature. Because of this rapid development, it is particularly important to respond individually to the different developments and to counteract any imbalances that may arise. The stabilization of the step development and the support of the foot anatomy during the growth process is crucial for the foot health of tomorrow and the prevention of foot malpositions.
Children's feet grow very quickly compared to other parts of the child's body. In the process, children's feet go through various developmental phases. Their duration is different for each child.
CHUNG SHI children's shoes accompany and support children's feet step by step in all these stages of development and the different ages.
Characteristic of the infant or bowleg phase are outwardly rotated knee legs and leg axes. This quite normal developmental phase results from a space-saving position in the womb and provides additional shock absorption during this developmental phase due to the light and flexible Duflex material.
In the toddler stage, the further development process of the legs and feet begins and the leg positions that were previously pronounced bow legs change to x-legs. This can only happen within a year and can lead to tensions in the tissues during walking and standing. The still soft child's foot can bend inward due to the additional stress. This phase often continues into school age.
Shoes that relieve pressure, reduce signs of fatigue and respond flexibly to the changing body proportions of children's feet enable the natural development of children's feet. The soft and elastic Duflex material of the DUX Kids clogs adapts to the individual shape of the child's foot, provides unique pressure relief and reduces signs of fatigue.
Straight, stretched leg stage:
At around 6 years of age, the leg position has stabilized in most children. Within this process, stronger pressure acts on the outside of the knee joints and stimulates cartilage growth, slowly stretching the leg. A visit to the orthopedist should be scheduled at regular intervals during this phase. In addition, sensorimotor function should be further promoted and trained.
Sensitization and stabilization of the natural rolling behavior are decisive for the foot health of tomorrow. The Duxfree Kids offer a combination of stabilization, pressure relief and promotion of sensorimotor correct foot strike due to the flexible Duflex outsole.
For each child, these developmental phases proceed differently and should always be done in consultation with an expert.
Checklist for the right children's shoes
To promote and best support children's foot health, the following points should be considered when buying shoes:
- Time of the first shoe purchase:
The first shoes should only be bought when you start running.
- Optimal fit:
Children's shoes should not be bought too big, but should give the feet the freedom of movement necessary for the movement process and at the same time stability.
- Flexible material:
The footbed should provide shock absorption and not be too stiff so that the foot can roll well.
- Sensomotor outsole:
This should make the underground and the initially important heel contact tangible.
Safety and comfort are also top priorities in the development of tomorrow's foot health for children's feet!
What are the childhood foot deformities?
Malpositions in children can be congenital or occur during growth. Possible causes can be genetic or can be attributed to maladaptive behavior such as lack of exercise, obesity or ill-fitting shoes.
Many malpositions disappear by themselves over time. If this is not the case, medical advice should be sought as a precaution. The following deformities occur most frequently in children's feet:
Buckling drop feet:
In this case, the inner arch of the foot is flattened and the X-position of the heel is reinforced. The child's bent flat foot usually disappears all by itself when walking begins and nothing needs to be done.
This foot deformation is rarely congenital, but usually develops as children grow older. A sickle foot can be recognized by the fact that the front foot is turned inward more than the back foot. Targeted foot massages help in the therapy of this deformity.
The heel-toe can develop due to a forced position in the womb and quickly regresses in newborns. Characteristic of a heel foot is the foot bent upwards and the sole of the foot pointing outwards.
This is an internal rotation of the sole of the foot, usually caused by congenital malformations and stiffening of the joints and muscles. Boys are usually affected more often than girls. If the lumb foot is corrected right after birth, good results can be achieved.
In flat feet, the arch of the foot is flattened. Due to the layer of fat present in newborns, it often looks as if they have flat feet. With the beginning of walking, flat feet can then develop accordingly and the arch of the foot straightens up. If this does not happen on its own, physiotherapeutic measures, insoles or exercises can correct the flat feet.
Heel pain in children is a typical overuse problem in growth phases. This is a softening of the growth plate of the heel bone. This is particularly common in athletic children.