Summer break is nearly here, and that means it's also camp time. So, whether the kids are going to day camp or getting ready for a sleepaway experience, we know that picking the perfect shoes, including the best camp sandals, can be difficult.

In fact, when choosing any shoes for kids, you likely have to choose between the trendy styles that kids love, and the supportive (and affordable) shoes that make sense to you. But summer should be fun, not hard. So, if you want to find camp shoes for kids that make everyone happy, just keep reading for pro-level shopping tips from Dr. Alvin Cowans, our pediatric foot care specialist in Powder Springs, Georgia.

What Features Makes the Best Camp Sandals and Sneakers for Kids Child with bare feet standing on rock in the middle of water

Summer is unofficially known as sandal season for kids, whether they're at camp or at home. However, summer is also a time for playing sports and enjoying the great outdoors. And not all sandals are designed to support kids' feet throughout these activities. So, what should you look for when purchasing the best camp sandals for kids?  

For starters, shoes that are going to camp should be waterproof, so that kids can keep their feet covered when heading to the pool or hitting the showers in a shared bunk or locker room. But why is that so important?

Here's the deal: when children walk across moist surfaces that see a lot of foot traffic, they're getting exposed to plenty of fungal particles. So, if their feet aren't covered, and there's even a tiny crack in their skin's surface, those particles could invade their bodies, leading to fungal toenail infections or cases of athlete's foot.

Now, since these sandals need to keep kids safe on wet, slippery surfaces, another feature you need to look for in the best camp sandals is traction. This will help prevent slips, falls and sprains or fractures while children enjoy their summer fun. But sandals aren't the only camp shoes that need traction. After all, children at camp also play on surfaces rnaging from gravel and grass to wooded trails and even concrete. As such, any shoes they wear to camp should have plenty of tread on the soles. Otherwise, the risk for injury will increase dramatically.

Other Features of Good Camp Shoes for Kids

Another must have for kids camp sandals and shoes? You need to purchase pairs that are built to let kids' feet breathe. Of course, that's pretty easy to pull off with sandals. But when selecting closed-toed shoes, look for styles made from canvas, leather or other natural materials that allow air to flow around the feet. Steer clear of synthetoc materials, since they can trap sweat next to your child's feet, creating the kind of warm, moist environment where fungus can thrive. Finally, in order to reduce the risk for athlete's foot infections. pair materials made from natural materials with socks designed to pull moisture away from kids' feet. In combination, these efforts should help reduce the chances of your child coming home from camp with an itchy foot rash.

Selecting Sporting Shoes for Summer Camp

If your child is heading off to a sport-specific summer camp, you'll need to purchase shoes designed to support their activities of choice. But why are sport-specific shoes so important for kids feet? From tennis to basketball; baseball and soccer; different sports put pressure on different parts of your child's foot and ankle. So, in order to prevent injury, you'll need to find shoes specifically designed to offset those forces, helping protect children from overuse injuries and sports injuries, and even helping improve their athletic performance.

Not sure what features are important to look for in specific sporting shoes? Or are you finding that your child's feet hurt, even when they're wearing the right athletic shoes? The problem may lie in the structure of their feet. And, if that's the case, you can come into our podiatry practice in Powder Springs' Lost Mountain neighborhood. In the office, we can evaluate your child's foot structure and determine if custom orthotic inserts will help him or her play with greater comfort.

How to Pick the Best Camp Sandals: Final Tips

Even when you know exactly what to look for in the best camp sandals, we know that it can be tough to find shoes that please both parents and children. Or, if kids complain that their feet hurt in the shoes you pick, it can be hard to know if the problem is in the footwear, or if your child's foot structure is causing discomfort. So, how can you find the right camp shoes for your child, and make sure that his or her feet feel their best, all summer long?

Here's what you need to do: simply give our office a call at 770-727-0614, or click here to request an in-office appointment. Dr. Cowans is an expert at evaluating children's foot pain, and helping find the simplest solution to making their feet feel better. So, whether you need help picking the perfect shoes for the season, or helping your child overcome discomfort, that's exactly what we'll do when you come in for a visit!


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