Dr. Staheli said that in Western nations, kids must often wear shoes to protect against hot pavement, snow, broken glass or the occasional stray hypodermic syringe on the sidewalk, among other things. He believes that the more closely a kid’s shoe resembles the barefoot state, the better. Furthermore, he says there is no evidence that corrective shoes correct anything – the supposed deformities correct themselves in the vast majority of cases. Many adult foot ailments origin in the childhood and often lead to problems in other parts of the body.
Healthy feet have 26 bones, most of which, at birth, are just soft cartilage. During childhood, these bones begin to ossify (harden) and are not fully developed until late teens.
It is, therefore, very important during these formative years to look after kid’s developing feet as they are very sensitive to pressure, and can easily adopt the shape of a shoe that doesn’t fit properly which can then prevent the foot from developing naturally.
Many people believe that “arch support” is an important contribution from shoes. Lately, an increasing number of researchers and doctors are challenging this assumption.