Heel to Toe Helper Socks!

heel to toe helper socks

Working with many children who exhibit Idiopathic Toe Walking, I have found an extremely successful treatment adjunct to be the use of “Heel to Toe Helper Socks” aka grippy socks! I am not speaking of the standard low profile treads typically found on our children’s socks. We require something which we can custom design for each individual child, offering more tactile input through the child’s foot as well as extra motivation to fully weight bear through the whole foot promoting heel to toe gait pattern. 

Heel to Toe Helper Sock Tutorial

heel to toe helper socks

What you need:

Child sized socks (without any embellishment on soles)

Fabric paint

Empty paper towel or toilet paper roll


heel to toe helper socks1. Begin with clean socks, slide onto empty paper towel/toilet paper roll to allow for easier application of fabric paint.

heel to toe helper socksheel to toe helper socks2. Apply small raised dots along entire sole or strictly on heels. 

helper heel to toe socks3. Each child responds differently, so you can experiment with both varieties to see which option promotes more natural heel-toe gait pattern.

helper heel to toe socks4. Allow time for paint to dry still on empty towel roll (ideally 12 hours).

heel to toe helper socks heel to toe helper socks5. Let child test drive on hard wood or tile surface. Note picture above, the child keeps his full foot surface in contact with floor as he walks along the hard wood!

heel to toe helper socks6. Make adjustments as needed, may need to apply thicker dots for more tactile input, or concentrate dots along entire heel surface (to encourage more weight bearing through heel vs toes).

For more helpful tips read our post Toe Walking: Background and Treatment Strategies!

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