Medical study on preschoolers hallux valgus

The whole study: Increased hallux angle in children and its association with insufficient length of footwear: A community based cross-sectional study (2009) 


Wearing shoes of insufficient length during childhood has often been cited as leading to deformities of the foot, particularly to the development of hallux valgus disorders. These assumptions have not been confirmed through scientific research until now. This study aims to investigate whether this association can be statistically proven, and if children who wear shoes of insufficient length actually do have a higher risk of a more pronounced lateral deviation of the hallux.


858 pre-school children were included in the study. The study sample was stratified by sex, urban/rural areas and Austrian province. The hallux angle and the length of the feet were recorded. The inside length of the children's footwear (indoor shoes worn in pre-school and outdoor shoes) were assessed.


Researchers conducted exact examinations of the hallux angle on a total of 1,579 individual feet. Only 23.9% out of 1,579 feet presented a straight position of the great toe. The others were characterized by lateral deviations (valgus position) at different degrees. 69.4% of 812 children wore outdoor shoes that were too short. A significant relationship was observed between the lengthwise fit of the shoes and the hallux angle: the shorter the shoe, the higher the value of the hallux angle.


There is a significant relationship between the hallux angle in children and footwear that is too short in length. The fact that the majority of the children examined were wearing shoes of insufficient length makes the issue particularly significant. Our results emphasize the importance of ensuring that children's footwear fits properly.

Only 24 % of preschool children had a straight great toe position


This study for me as a shoe shop owner, revealed a shocking fact that only 22.8% of the preschool children wore properly-fitting outdoor shoes on the day of research performed in Austrian kindergartens. Even more shocking it is to realize that these problems occur already to pre-school children! A 5 year old child should have problems with broken toys and not a hallux valgus of their toes. It is so easy to prevent this problem by checking from time to time if the shoes still fit. What is a proper fit? At the time of purchase ‘A properly-fitting shoe should be at least 10 mm and optimally 12 mm longer than the foot.’ A quote from the study.

Parents, please, check the size of the kids’ shoes regularly. In all our PROTETIKA sandals you can see the toes nicely. In closed barefoot sneakers you can remove the insert and see from the toe marks if the shoes still fit. Prevent these problems. As the Dutch philosopher Desiderius Erasmus said: Prevention is better than the cure.

Our loyal customers have a loyalty discount code. Coming back to our eshop for the next size makes it easy for both parties – you get the correctly fitting shoes. I as an eshop owner can guide you between different models and sizes. And I save a courier cost associated with a size exchange, which I provide as per Refund and Exchange Policy for free.

Always start your shopping process by drawing around the child's foot with stretched out toes. All our models have the size chart in the description. Add 1 cm to your child's measurement and you have the correct size. Additionally, please note that each model can have slightly different sizing. That is why you should read the size charts in each shoe description.

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