Today, society strongly advocates for children to walk barefoot, especially babies whose feet are still developing. Going completely barefoot can be detrimental to a child's health in the long run. When it comes to letting our children walk or run barefoot, some surfaces are safer than others. This is where padding comes into play.
The lack of minimal padding when walking barefoot can lead to injuries from unsafe terrains, such as rough, slick surfaces or sharp objects on the ground (like the missing Legos around the living room!).
Another health risk is exposing their feet to harmful insects or parasites found in the grass or different types of fungi and bacteria from warm, humid environments.
Thankfully, there is a simple solution to these problems: minimalist shoes! Also known as barefoot shoes. They generally have several features: a barely-there heel rise, a flexible sole, and a big toe box that allows your foot to expand properly and hold firmly in place so you don't have to grab the shoe. This does not mean that they do not offer any protection. Minimalist shoes simply do not restrict normal movement or posture in any way. Your feet are free to move as if you were not wearing shoes.
So what are the other benefits of barefoot shoes for children?
Reason 1: Barefooting promotes sensory development
Our feet are full of nerve endings that record important information about the type of surface we are on and create an important sensory feedback loop that keeps our bodies and brains constantly connected to our feet.
There are many padded shoes on the market that keep our children from having this amazing sensory experience every time they move.
Reason 2: Barefoot Shoes Improve Your Child's Balance
When you take your kids out to play, are you ever afraid they'll fall and get hurt? But if they're wearing the right barefoot shoes, you won't have to worry so much. Trust our product: each pair of Saguaro shoes is made of soft, lightweight materials, an ultra-thin 5mm sole, and a wide toe box that conforms to the anatomical shape of the foot. It gives your child an amazing ground feel while helping their little feet develop stronger toes and foot muscles, improving impact absorption and overall stability.
So you don't have to worry about your child hurting themselves playing! And keeping balance becomes so much easier!
Reason 3: Barefoot Shoes Increase Muscle Strength
Perhaps you already know that young children's feet are made primarily of cartilage? Their bones are still developing in the first few years of their lives, growing strong bones and muscles among the constant use of their feet. And traditional shoes have a lot of padding and pointed beds, creating a compact environment for toddlers' feet. In the long run, this can trigger an unnatural gait, and poor posture, and can even lead to muscle atrophy.
Instead, barefoot shoes are the best choice because they have less padding and a wide toe, providing much-needed wiggle room, better support, and healthy arch, muscle, and ligament development.
Reason 4: Barefoot Shoes Establish Good Posture Help Correct Gait
Another feature of barefoot shoes is the zero-drop sole: a perfectly flat sole with the heel at the same height as the ball of the foot. This keeps the body and bones properly aligned and the weight evenly distributed across the entire sole.
In contrast, regular shoes with a high heel to toe can misalign our entire body Wearing shoes with a raised heel shortens the structure of the lower leg over time and can lead to reduced range of motion in the ankle and Achilles tendon pain.
Even the slightest change is important for our children!
Reason 5: Barefoot shoes prevent jagged surfaces
Kids love to run around and climb trees and rocks. From our personal experience, we'd say they're naturally drawn to anything that seems dangerous, but the truth is they have a real curiosity for new things! And who are we to blame?
When it comes to any outdoor activity, regardless of the surface, Saguaro barefoot shoes are designed to provide a stable grip and steady movement. So kids can run free and enjoy their adventures without the risk of injury.
The secret once again lies in the ultra-flexible rubber sole and wide toe, which work together to protect feet and provide better stability.
Reason 6: Barefoot kids have more fun
The truth is that kids do prefer to go barefoot, without shoes, and without socks to move freely outdoors.
Barefoot shoes allow this to happen without us parents having to worry about their feet coming into direct contact with germs, unsanitary surfaces, or other aspects that may cause discomfort. Barefoot shoes are designed to mold the natural shape of the foot, allowing our children to run around, play, and explore the world happily.
In short, it helps to imagine that humans are like trees. For us, our roots are our feet, which we constantly use to discover the world around us. When roots don't have enough space, trees can't grow strong and healthy. The same goes for our children. Here's to happy and strong roots!