why kids and parents choose Stride Rite.

Why Stride Rite

Life with kids is fun, messy, crazy, challenging and inspiring - and their shoes have to keep up with all of it! That's why our expert-approved, comfortable shoes for kids are fueled by wild imagination and built for life's adventures - big and small.

Since 1919, we've designed innovative children's footwear based on current trends and the latest knowledge behind healthy foot development. Stride Rite shoes do more than look great - they help build strength, coordination and confidence throughout every step of childhood. Learn more about what makes Stride Rite the best place to buy kids' shoes.

quality you can trust

Quality is our priority. To deliver the highest quality kids' shoes, we use a multi-step approach and extreme attention to detail to craft every single Stride Rite product. We combine safe materials, a true-to-life last that matches the shape of real kids' feet, superior craftsmanship, and rigorous testing to earn the APMA Seal of Approval for shoes that help promote kids' foot health.

safe materials

All of our materials come from nominated, reputable suppliers that pass our high quality standards, ensuring there are no harmful chemicals or phthalates in your kids' shoes. We use stitching in many of our shoe designs to minimize the need for chemical-containing glue.

Our shoes can include any combination of these and other non-toxic materials:

  • lightweight rubber
  • premium leather
  • memory foam
  • breathable mesh
  • antimicrobial liners

true-to-life last

A last is a 3D form that's shaped like the human foot and used to make shoes. Traditional lasts typically feature hard edges and flat surfaces. They usually come in one width, place the foot high from the ground, and lack flexibility. The problem with traditional lasts is that kids' and babies' feet look and function really differently from adult feet.

That's where we come in. Our true-to-life lasts are anatomically correct so we can create kids' shoes that actually fit and help promote healthy foot growth. Babies typically have soft, flat feet with no instep. When they're not going barefoot, they need flexible, rounded shoes that cradle their feet without inhibiting movement. With our true-to-life lasts, that's exactly what they get.

Read our faq, size guide and fit guide to learn more about how kids' feet grow.

superior craftsmanship

No Stride Rite shoe is complete without superior craftsmanship. Our SRtech™ line employs a patented double lasting process, which minimizes bulk so baby and toddler feet sit low and can feel the ground below them. And Soft Motion™ baby and toddler shoes are designed with smooth, seamless linings, which add comfort to every step; and their uppers are stitched - not glued - to the outsoles, for long-lasting wear.

Stride Rite baby shoes are never flocked with fabric on the outsoles, which can reduce traction and durability. Instead, we use flexible, rounded rubber outsoles that match the natural shape of the foot and promote stability and sensory feedback. Select designs include a reinforced shank for extra support.

rigorous product testing

We never cut corners when it comes to product testing. Because safety is a top priority, we invest the necessary time and resources to properly test every shoe we create.

Each design goes through four testing phases, followed by fit and wear testing:

  • In the first two testing phases, our quality assurance teams examine the safety of the shoe's technology and material components. The teams review each and every aspect of the finished shoe twice over from lace to sole, including pull tests that literally pull at various elements of the shoe - just like a child might - to ensure safety and durability and reduce the risk of choking hazards.
  • In the following two phases, our product integrity team checks the product twice over again for safety and quality.
  • After testing, we get our sample sizes fit-approved so they're ready for wear tests.
  • Our wear tests are a minimum of 60 hours so we can reliably approve new materials for durability and safety.

We already put our shoes through the ringer, but on top of our rigorous factory- and third-party testing, all Stride Rite suppliers must pass through high international standards to ensure our chemical-free shoes don't contain any dangerous phthalates.

APMA seal of approval

Stride Rite Soft Motion™ and SRtech™ shoes have proudly earned the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) Seal of Approval. This seal is awarded to shoes, socks, insoles and other products that relate to foot health. For a product to earn the seal, a committee of APMA podiatrists must independently verify that a product's design encourages proper foot health in terms of both safety and quality.

With podiatrist-recommended shoes for toddlers and babies from Stride Rite, you know your kids' shoes are proven to help support their healthy foot development.

project fits rite

For over 100 years, Stride Rite has proven that we understand the individuality of every child. By combining our expert-approved fit with a fashion-forward style, Project Fits Rite lets kids focus on one thing: just being kids. We are proud to introduce Journey: our first sneaker made with features and benefits that are fully adaptable and designed to accommodate orthotics, braces, and extra wide widths. Journey is a part of our machine washable Made2Play® collection and also offered in traditional sizes.

In addition to Journey, Stride Rite has made a commitment throughout all our collections to offer features and benefits to ensure your child always has access to the rite fit.

project fits rite

kid-friendly technologies

Every Stride Rite shoe has the expert-backed quality construction you want, with a trend-rite style that kids love. With thorough product testing and innovative construction, Stride Rite's advanced features and benefits set our kids' shoes apart from the rest of the competition. In addition, all of our shoes come in fun, colorful and stylish designs that kids are proud to show-off - we know, because our design teams do a ton of market research and continually shop international markets for new trends.

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prewalker (sizes 0-7)

Prewalker shoes all have our newly engineered lightweight, soft TPU outsole. This offers the perfect combination of flexibility, comfort and protection to help little ones crawl and eventually take their first steps.

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soft motion™ (sizes 0-7)

Soft Motion™ shoes are built for babies taking their first steps. With design features that encourage natural movement, Soft Motion™ shoes help give wobbly walkers the confidence and stability they need to explore the world on two feet, without hindering their natural development.

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SRtech™ shoes for toddlers and big kids

SRtech™ shoes for next steps feature our proprietary Sensory Response Technology to enhance proprioception, or the way joints and muscles communicate with the brain to help coordinate movement. This sensory feedback helps develop the fine motor skills kids need to navigate their world safely and comfortably.

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made2play® washable shoes

Let's face it, playing in mud and splashing in puddles are some of the best parts of being a kid! Let yours enjoy these small rites of passage without worrying that they'll ruin their shoes. Stride Rite Made2Play (M2P) shoes are 100% machine washable, so your days of scrubbing shoes by hand are gone.

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light-up shoes

What child wouldn't love shoes that light up with every step? Our light-up shoes come in athletic styles with EVA outsoles and memory foam insoles to deliver both fashion and function. Outsoles made from EVA, or ethyl vinyl acetate, are lightweight, highly shock absorbent, and more durable that traditional rubber outsoles.

These durable, comfortable and adjustable designs are enhanced by innovative light technologies that add a touch of magic to a child's everyday wardrobe. Our M2P light-up shoes are even machine washable!

Learn more about our light-up shoe collection.

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stride rite 360

Stride Rite 360 provides a price conscious option while maintaining the Stride Rite approved benchmark for fit. Designed with features and benefits to accommodate medium and wide widths in one, including a removable insole and adjustable buckle, Stride Rite 360 adds a touch of ease to busy parents on-the-go life.

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surprize by stride rite

Growing kids have different needs, so we've designed a line of shoes for each stage of their development. Surprize by Stride Rite focuses on the comfort, fit and durability to withstand all-day play during all of life's little adventures.

Available exclusively at Target.

wide, x-wide, and x-x-wide sizes

It's no secret that baby and toddler feet have a little extra cushion - that's why they're so cute! As children's feet develop, it's not uncommon for them to need wide, extra wide, or even extra-extra wide shoes to stay comfortable and give those tootsies enough room to grow. We've got feet of all sizes covered.

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