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Hardwearing school shoes?
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# 1
Old 02-12-2010, 3:17 PM
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Default Hardwearing school shoes?


My almost 9 year old son seems to go through shoes like nobodys business, he is on his 3rd pair this school year already..

And it's not that the shoes are rubbish as such, it/'s the way he walks, like he deliberately scrapes the toes of them until they are ruined. The second pair, he had scraped them that bad they were right down to some sort of white plastic "filler" material within the shoe.

His first pair were 14 Asda Leather ones, his second pair were 24 from Next and the pair he has now are 10 plastic ones from ShoeZone (his dad bought those ones, he said he can't have decent ones til he can look after them, I am no longer with his dad, so am just pleased he actually bought him some )

He has had this pair 2 weeks and after 2 days he had scraped them and now there are loads of scrape marks and they look awful. He always says that "someone stood on me" or "someone pushed me" and todays excuse was " I HAVE to walk you know!" which made me see red as who walks dragging their toes?? He is on the autistic spectrum but I dont think it is related...

I am sick of buying shoes, his younger brother has had the same ones from Next since April and they still look great, yet he is the one who is more boisterous and plays football etc at playtime.

I think the shoezone ones are a false economy as look awful after the first scrape, whereas leather would polish up,but I am really wary of paying a lot for something that is going to wear out so easily, I need something virtually indestructable.

Any suggestions please?? He did wear Clarks when younger but I would be so if I got some now and he did that to them!
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# 2
Old 02-12-2010, 3:23 PM
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Buy him black plimsolls! 9yrs old he is old enough to understand that this behavior is unacceptable.

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# 3
Old 02-12-2010, 3:26 PM
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Clarks are the hardest wearing I have found. My son who is of the ruff and tumble type has had his for around 6 months now, and I am only having to get him a new pair as he is out growing them. They are the ones with rubber toes, so in theory your son shouldnt be able to scrape them. HTH x
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# 4
Old 02-12-2010, 3:28 PM
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I don't think buying him cheaper shoes are helping him. DS 10 year old has Ricosta shoes - a good German make that were fitted at Startrite. You've already spent on shoes what I did on his one pair and they are showing no sign of falling apart and he is a very boisterous, active boy. I don't expect to buy him a new pair until these get too small.

If you really believe it's not the shoes, then make him contribute some of his pocket money towards a new pair. I'm not sure a pair of growing feet that need support should be wearing plimsolls.

Edited to add :- sorry I misssed that he was on the autistic spectrum - are you sure the dragging of the feet is not a compulsion related to that?

Last edited by gingin; 02-12-2010 at 3:32 PM.
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# 5
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Old 02-12-2010, 3:33 PM
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This is probably completly wrong but came into my head while Reading your post so I thought I would reply - does he not like the shoes / the style / are they not cool? Or not what his friends wear? I just thought it sounds like he is doing it on purpose? Maybe to get a new pair? Maybe like his mates have?? I noticed on the school run last week a lot of boys seemed to be wearing black leather trainers?? Maybe trainers would last longer??
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# 6
Old 02-12-2010, 3:51 PM
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My grandaughter is 13 and is on to her second pair of black lace up shoes since they went back to school in September. The first pair were dropping to bits after only 2 weeks and the pair she is wearing now are going the same way. She's at that age where she wants the cheap fashionable pair and will not let me buy her Clarks shoes.
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# 7
Old 02-12-2010, 3:54 PM
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Toe walking is a very common trait on the autistic spectrum so I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that he is naughty or doing this deliberately. It was one of the things they looked for when my child was diagnosed and there are various theories as to why they do it, some psychological and some physical.

To answer the question, dd who is autistic and also hard on her shoes wears trainers from Clarks and they look OKish for about 6 months. Even ds who isn't hard on shoes isn't able to keep cheap supermarket shoes looking good for more than a few weeks so IMO it's worth paying a bit more for a quality shoe if you want them to last longer. You might have to accept though due to his behavioural trait that shoes are never going to last as long as you'd like.
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# 8
Old 02-12-2010, 3:57 PM
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I got some from Brantano that had rubber tops on. I think they were Clarks and I remember them being a bit pricy, but the boys are still wearing them both. So I'm quite happy.
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# 9
Old 02-12-2010, 3:59 PM
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I only bought my son cheaper shoes once, and the same happened as what's happened to your sons, with the toe of the shoe.

Never looked back from buying Clarkes then, no matter how much he scuffed them, they would still clean up as good as new.

It's worth paying out more as they should do him till he needs the next size.
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# 10
Old 02-12-2010, 4:02 PM
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A lot of people seem to be of the opinion that Clarks shoes are a tad pricy but last. For a few extra pounds, you can buy the 'shumagic' which is better applied before the child wears the shoes, rather than after the damage has been done. Some parents told me this summer that they swear by it to keep the shoes looking better for longer. Obviously there are some cheaper alternatives of shoe polish available too. :-)

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# 11
Old 02-12-2010, 4:02 PM
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What size is he? My boys have big feet, so at that age were comfortable in Dr Martins
Please forgive me if my comments seem abrupt or my questions have obvious answers, I have a mental health condition which affects my ability to see things as others might.
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# 12
Old 02-12-2010, 4:44 PM
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You could try GEOX. A bit pricey (but not more than you have already paid for the 3 pairs). My DS used to have a new pair each term of Clarks shoes, the GEOX ones he had lasted him 1 year.

Startrite do a tougher version (think its called RHINO?) or Ricosta as suggested above.
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# 13
Old 02-12-2010, 4:48 PM
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fill in the scuff marks with black marker pen then polish them weekly, should extend the life of them a bit longer.
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# 14
Old 02-12-2010, 4:51 PM
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I once started a similar thread for my then 9yo son who was wrecking (clarks) shoes. I got various replies including telling child to look after shoes better and quality of shoes. Then I grumbled to a RL friend about it and she looked thru our conservatory window to my barefoot son and said 'looks like he's flat-footed to me' and sure enough when I checked it out so he is! That was the reason he was going thru so many shoes-he was a toe scraper and 'heavy' on shoes as well as, but everything combined meant we were going thru so many. Just check it out first, just in case.
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# 15
Old 02-12-2010, 6:00 PM
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You get what you pay for really. It doesnt work out cheaper buying cheap shoes.

I Had my two in clarkes as long as i could. then my son decided everyone was wearing trainers so i got him black nike trainers Astro turf type and he wore those. When my daughter got to the age that she didnt want clarkes she wore kickers and they lasted for ever.
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# 16
Old 02-12-2010, 7:07 PM
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I agree with Nicki and Spendless. You need to speak to your health visitor or doctor to see if there is a physical reason he's doing, it and if there is anything that can be done about it.
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# 17
Old 02-12-2010, 7:09 PM
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I've found Start-Rite to be even better than Ricosta (my ds is 8). Hate to say it but with children's shoes you really do get what you pay for
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# 18
Old 02-12-2010, 7:14 PM
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Ive always bought my DD startrite shoes (we are lucky enough to have the factory nearby and so we get them at their shop cheaper), but last year my puppy chewed one of them up so I had to get her a pair quick and so went and bought her a pair from next, I was so shocked that the 2O odd pair scuffed and looked horrible within a couple of weeks. Whereas her startrite ones had lasted nearly a whole school year. I know girls arent quite so hard on shoes as boys but I do agree that paying a bit more will get you a bit more.
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# 19
Old 02-12-2010, 7:22 PM
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I'll 2nd DM's, seen them used as brakes for a racer bike by a teenage boy who really tried his hardest to demolish them and failed!

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# 20
Old 02-12-2010, 7:31 PM
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Originally Posted by amandada View Post
I've found Start-Rite to be even better than Ricosta (my ds is 8). Hate to say it but with children's shoes you really do get what you pay for
We gave up on clarks shoes when they started putting toys in them.
DD is 9 and will go thru 2 pairs in a school year. With clarks she can go thru 6. Startrite are a bit more expensive than clarks but much more hardwearing.
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