These days, when it comes to parenting, we’re all too aware of this trend to wrap children in cotton wool, hoping to protect them from germs and illness. What many parents aren’t actually aware of though are the benefits associated with old-fashioned ways of doing things. Take barefoot kids for instance. Today, it’s rare to see children playing without shoes on.
But are kids at a disadvantage when they play with shoes on?
According to podiatrists, there are significant advantages in allowing your children to play and experience time without shoes on.
The benefits of allowing your kids to go barefoot:
By allowing your child to walk around without shoes on, you are helping them to build vital muscles in their feet, for example the arches and muscles and ligaments connected with the feet and ankles. No shoes mean the feet work harder, aiding in the building of vital muscles and ligaments.
Another extremely important benefit associated with the barefoot experience is that children without shoes on, will keep their heads up more when walking without shoes on. Believe it or not, shoes can actually force developing feet to conform to the shoes. It creates a scenario where the child is constantly looking down at their feet, to ensure their feet conform to the shoes, so they don’t fall over.
As Chiropractors, we believe it is vital for your child to maintain good standing and walking posture, and allowing a young child to keep their head up is great for posture, as well as balance in the spine and the overall function of the nervous system. And when your spine is happy and healthy, chances are, so too is your body.
So next time your child has the option of going without shoes, take that barefoot option! Opt for a soft soled, comfortable shoe when shoe wearing is absolutely essential.