What Kind of Kids Shoes Do You Buy? (2 Questions)

Updated on August 08, 2011
T.L. asks from Cuba, MO
17 answers

Do you buy your kids expensive Nike, etc... shoes or just tennis shoes from K-Mart, Target, or Wal-Mart?

Also, being a parent who grew up playing sports and always having the shoes that go with that sport i.e. basketball shoes, cleats for softball and tennis shoes for just tennis I feel that it is important for my kids to also have the proper shoes. Do you as a parent just let your kids wear tennis shoes for everything or do they have specific shoes for specific sports?

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answers from Cincinnati on

I buy all name brand, quality shoes for my kids- Nike, Puma, Addidas, New Balance, Skechers, Crocs. BUT, I am an extremely good shopper and I almost always spend less on those brands than I would reg. price on Target/Payless/Walmart knock offs. I wait until off season or there is a good sale and I stock up by buying sizes ahead of time. My kids also wear all the corresponding shoes for sports- soccer cleats, baseball cleats, etc....same thing with those- wait for sales, buy ahead of time, etc. I would NEVER make any of my kids wear used shoes. Not only do I find it gross, but I also can't imagine that it is healthy to wear a pair of shoes that has already formed to another person's feet.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Raleigh on

For sneakers, I always buy my son Sketchers or New Balance. They last the longest of any other brand, hands down. I save myself tons of money buying one nice pair that he can wear for a long time. Those cheaper brands at Walmart or Target last about 1 month.
As for sports, it's two pair- cleats and the tennis shoes. I don't buy multiple pairs for sports.

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answers from Richmond on

1st kid: brand new name brand

2nd kid: hand me down's and target brand

3rd kid: hand me downs from friends

I can't bring myself to spend $30 on shoes for ME, I'm not spending $100 on shoes for 3 kids, NO WAY!! Sticker shock!!

The past few years I've found REALLY good deals online for the girls, and I'm hoping to do this again this year. The only downside is I still have to drag them to Stride Rite to make sure I'm buying the right size, and obviously every brand is different so buying online leaves room for error.

I'm not even buying new school shoes for the girls until flip flop season is over, otherwise they'd outgrow them by Christmas!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Orlando on

When it comes to their most worn shoes, especially tennis shoes, we ten to go with Nike, Stride Rite or Sketchers...they are just cuter I think (my boys just turned six)....we have bought shoes for them at Payless but usually it's sandals or knock off Crocs...yes, we have bought the appropriate sport shoe when needed, especially for my 13 year old daughter when she played basketball, my husband insisted the proper higher shoe was necessary for basketball....didn't really matter to me but I let him think he was making a really important and necessary decision :-)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbus on

Good questions! In our family, we always buy good quality shoes because unlike clothing, ill-fitting shoes can have lasting, negative affects. My husband is an edurance runner and a running coach (for fun, his day job is being a soldier lol). He has always insisted on buying good shoes for the family. He knows exactly what bad shoes can do and it's not pretty. If I have to choose between a pricey shirt at the mall or good shoes, the shoes win every time. As soon as our daughter started walking, we went to Stride Rite. She is ten now and has gone through tons of shoes but the only ones I don't mind going cheap on are flip flops and dress shoes she'll wear once :) And as for sports, I would also buy the appropriate shoes. I played softball and daughter plays baseball. Definitely need cleats for that, if she were to play basketball, again, specific shoes are pretty necessary. I played tennis for a bit and thought I could get away with wearing my normal athletic shoes. Nope! There's nothing worse than tearing a knee up because of the wrong shoes. Ouch!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Las Vegas on

I do tend to look for shoes that have GREAT support. Since my child's feet are still growing, I think it's so important that they get good support.. I have tried traditional Converse both for myself and my son and due to the shoes being so flat with NO support and despite their being on sale, I really did not like them and truly don't think they are good for one's feet. For sneakers, I have been buying my son leather ones that are by Rebok and they are light enough yet sturdy with lots of support. As for sport's shoes, when he played basketball , we had to get a leather hightop and while I didn't necessarily want to pay too much, I did and again, it was because the better shoe was more expensive. Also because I do prefer a well-made shoe, I definitely keep on the look out for sales. I love Zappos.Com << great selection.. I have purchased shoes from Target and they weren't the greatest (although I do love that store) ...

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

When my boys were babys they got target shoes. When they started walking I usually get them one good pair of shoes (puma, adidas) and if target or marshalls has a cute alternate pair (or two) I will get those for them too. Once they are walking tho you have to be careful of some of the target/babies r us shoes, because I some of them have this strange half cardboard sole that my kids would constantly slip from. For summer they usually get a pair of nike flip flops and a dressier pair of flips or sandals. Dress shoes I definetly try to buy on the cheaper end because they dont get much use.
If I had girls it would probably be a whole different ball game and I would probably go broke because I love shoes!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

I buy my kids good shoes because they are rough and tumble. I can either buy 10 pairs of 10 dollar shoes or buy them one pair of 70 dollar shoes.

For sports I always bought the proper shoes. My kids always played on a competitive level so I didn't want any accidents that can cause serious harm. You would be nuts to play soccer without wearing boots, you will slide on the grass and I won't list how many parts of your bodies can be harmed. Basketball, well sometimes I would let them wear trainers. Soft/baseball I would let them wear their soccer boots. So long as we got gripping going on they are fine.

I ripped the hell out of my ankle playing soccer in trainers, never want that for my kids. :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

We get adidas cleats for soccer when they are on sale and buy 1 get 1 50% off at famous footwear. We also buy them Nike, adidas or new balance sneakers for school at the same time it ends up being cheaper buying 2 pairs of name brand than buying them at walmart. When it gets close to basketball we get basketball sneakers. In our town specific shoes for different sports are required without proper footwear you can't play.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Albuquerque on

I buy the best shoes for my kids that I can afford. Currently they're in Clarks sandals. normally put of my price range, but I found a great sale. Every pair of cheap shoes from target or pay less that I've bought have ripped or not fit right or worn out in three months.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

If we have the money I take them to Nordy's and buy them Toms. They are farely inexpensive for shoes from that store...and they can get wet...washed and dried in the maker of a half and hour.

My kids wont really wear anything but their Toms now.

If and when my kiddo's get into extra activities they will have the shoe for the sport. With injuries happening more frequently and some of them serious you should have the right thing for the right sport.

When we are broke I normally will go to consignment shops and buy used everything.....You can normally find cleats, basket ball shoes...The one be me even regularly has Baseball/football pants for the uniforms...for practice at least.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Antonio on

I have a 3 yr old. I try to buy him StrideRite's when I see them at the local thrift store. Otherwise, I go to Payless and Target and get him whatever. We've been lucky and have gotten a lot of hand-me-downs, so whatever fits, he wears.

I think, for sports, they should wear the proper shoes. They make shoes specific for certain sports b/c of the terrain, b/c of the way you run, b/c of lots of factors. When my son starts sports, I'll get him the right kind of shoes.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

My son is now 8. He now gets Nike's etc.....
I always bought him Stride Rite shoes when he was little (1-4 or 5).
I have never bought him tennies from K-Mart, WalMart or Target.
Flip flops from there? Yes.
He play organized baseballs and the kids must have baseball shoes, so, yes, 2 pairs per year usually.
When he played soccer, he also got soccer shoes.
Soccer cleats can also be used for baseball, but not the other way around.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Toledo on

Stride Rite, or Payless has a good brand with Shock absorbers I think they are called smart fit...unless they are hard soles shoes, like dress shoes I do not use someone elses shoes because everyone has a differnet imprint to their foot and way they lean. BUT that is just one of my quirks and I have no problem pasing on my kids shoes to other people or think less if they use, used shoes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

(Mother of two ACTIVE boys.....9 and 6)
I used to buy them a whole bunch of different shoes from wherever I found a good deal. Then I noticed that they were just wearing one or two pairs all the time! So, the other ones just sat there and never got used...or got worn once or twice. I told my husband that I am only buying them two pairs of shoes and when they are worn out two more. They come with me and help pick them out, and I try to buy Nike, NB, Adidas....name brands that I know will hold up to kick ball, basketball, running, digging, tripping (lol) and all other boy things.
We don't play any other sports, yet, other than soccer. Soccer you have to wear cleats so both of my boys have soccer shoes.



answers from Oklahoma City on

We get her a lot of the strap sports shoe, like a the Z-strap Sketchers but not actually that brand. I mean...that much money for a kids shoe? Geez. We get most of our shoes from Walmart due to prices.

We do BMX, tennis, school, and several other sports. She wears non-shoelace shoes for almost everything she does. We do have several pairs of dressy shoes too that she wears with dresses.



answers from Portland on

W buy both - typically we buy stride right (on sale from the outlet store) and target brand or chuck taylors. Our daughter's foot has a high arch and high instep and is a little chubby (super cute) so we have to be careful. If we buy target brand, she tends to only wear them for short outings.

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