Ten Little Shoes: A Developmental Perspective

About a year ago I discovered a new brand of baby + toddler shoes called Ten Little and I knew I had to give them a try. Shoe considerations is a really important topic to me as a physical therapist. The feet are the foundation of our entire bodies, so naturally we need to get the foundation right if we want to set our littles up for success in walking! As a mom, I know it can be so overwhelming to have so many different shoe options. I hope this review of Ten Little will make the shoe buying process a little easier for you!

Here are some things I love about Ten Little Shoes from a developmental perspective: 

1. Supportive heel cup: this is the part of the shoe that holds the heel in place. Having a sturdy heel cup keeps the ankle in place and keeps it from sliding around. This will ensure that your baby can focus on balance and walking and not about keeping the foot in place within the shoe. The heel cup on Ten Little shoes is firm, but flexible which is the perfect combo.

2. Adjustable straps: this keeps the shoe snug to the foot. Again, important for keeping the foot in place. Nobody wants a foot that slides around inside their shoe. Adjustable straps or laces are also great for accommodating chubby feet. Ten Little velcro is extremely sturdy and will hold up with repetitive use, which is important for the longevity of your child’s shoes.

3. Supportive but flexible sole: in new walkers, I like to have a shoe that you can bend in half — this allows the foot to still move around and adapt to the surface of the floor. After the first pair of flexible walking shoes, the folding in half isn’t as important, but we still want something flexible with a non-slip sole. All of Ten Little styles have a sole that is both supportive and flexible, making them perfect for all stages of walkers!

4. Wide toe box: it is important to have a wide space for the toes to spread out easily, which is the natural position of the toes while walking. This allows your toes to assist with balance and stability. It’s also important for foot/toenail health to not have the toes scrunched & squished together. All of Ten Little shoes have adequate space for the toes to splay out for both comfort and function!

Ten Little has really thought of everything and has made it so easy to make sure you are buying the right size shoes for your littles. They provide 3 different options for you: you can download the ‘Perfect Fit Finder,’ they can mail you the fit finder or you can measure your child’s foot and enter the measurements here and they will recommend the perfect size for you! If you need tips for getting a good measurement of your child’s foot, check out this post on my Instagram page.

Can I tell you my favorite part about Ten Little? You don’t have to spare fashion for the sake of developmental function! Ten Little offers so many different styles of shoes and each one is just as adorable as the last! Whether you need Baby Booties, Everyday Sneakers, High Top Sneakers, Summer Sandals or a Mary Jane style, Ten Little has it all in tons of fun colors! There you have it: my review of Ten Little shoes through the lens of a pediatric physical therapist AND a mom! I know how important it is to find quality brands of shoes that take into account walking function, foot health, budget and style! I trust these shoes with my own kids’ feet and I kind of hope they eventually make adult styles because I would wear those for sure! Shop all of their styles here! Post a picture of your littles wearing their Ten Little shoes and tag @mommyandme.pt and @tenlittlekids for a chance to be featured on our Instagram pages.

Brittany is a pediatric physical therapist and owner of Mommy & Me PT! She has been a therapist for almost a decade, treating kids of all ages and abilities. She found her true passion for educating parents on developmental topics when her daughter was born and realized so many parents have the same questions! Follow her on Instagram (@mommyandme.pt) for tons of tips + tricks to foster your baby’s motor development through play!

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