8 Tough-Wearing Sneakers for Active Toddlers

Toddlers are always on the move — running, jumping, playing and exploring — so they need sneakers that can keep up with them. Their feet are also undergoing rapid growth, so performance-packed styles that promote healthy, natural development are critical.

The Key Features to Look for

• Flexible, lightweight rubber outsoles (the shoe should bend with your child’s toes)
• Cushioned, shock-absorbing insoles
• A generous toebox that provides room for toes to splay and grip the ground
• Stiff heel for stability
• Breathable materials, such as mesh and leather, to combat sweat.

To help get your search started, here is a roundup of eight adorable, on-trend, good-for-the-feet sneakers, all available to shop now:

Nike Free RN

Just like the big version for grownups, this sleek running style features an ultra-lightweight, breathable engineered mesh upper designed to deliver a comfy, socklike fit. Flex grooves on the Nike Free RN’s sole allow for natural movement in all directions, making it ideal for energetic toddlers.

Nike Free RN shoe
Nike Free RN shoe
CREDIT: Nike

New Balance 574 Core

New Balance’s ever-classic 574 has a retro aesthetic that’s right on trend, plus plenty of must-have performance features. Among them, mesh panels allow sweaty feet to breathe, while a cushioned midsole provides all-day comfort.

new balance, toddler sneakers
New Balance 574 Core sneaker
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

Adidas Originals Tubular Dusk

Adidas’ signature Tubular outsole gets downsized for toddlers on this stylish sneaker. Parents will appreciate the stretchy elastic laces, which make the shoe easy to get on and off.

adidas, kids sneakers
Adidas Originals Tubular Dusk sneaker
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

See Kai Run Stevie II

Little boys won’t be able to resist the casual-cool design of the See Kai Run Stevie II sneaker, which features a soft cotton jersey fabric inspired by a favorite sweatshirt. The shoe is built on a flexible rubber outsole that provides superior traction and durability for new walkers.

See Kai Run Stevie II sneaker
See Kai Run Stevie II sneaker
CREDIT: Zappos

Puma Suede Classic

Fifty years since its debut, Puma’s iconic Suede sneaker is still as popular as ever. The kids’ version doesn’t miss a detail, from its distinctive formstrip logo to its etched rubber outsole.

puma, toddler sneakers
Puma Suede Classic shoe
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

Reebok Classic Leather

Reebok’s Classic Leather not only looks cool but also comes with all the functional elements that active toddlers need. A cushy EVA midsole provides lightweight comfort, and a grippy, super durable gum rubber outsole keeps new walkers steady on their feet.

reebok, toddler sneakers
Reebok Classic Leather
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

Stride Rite Soft Motion Artie

This sporty style is part of Stride Rite’s innovative Soft Motion collection, which scored a Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association. It’s loaded with hard-working features, including a seamless construction that mimics the natural shape of a child’s foot, memory foam footbed for comfort and rounded sole to improve balance and grip.

stride rite, shoes
Stride Rite Soft Motion Artie shoe
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

Jordan Jumpman Team II

These stylish basketball kicks by Jordan will help little kids jump high like His Airness. A throwback to the Air Jordan 13, which was originally designed for the court, this sneaker has a lightweight foam sole and an adjustable ankle strap for a more secure fit.

jordan, toddler sneakers
Jordan Jumpman Team II sneaker
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

All products featured have been independently selected and curated by our editorial team. If you buy something through the links included on our site, FN may earn a commission.

Want more?

Virgil Abloh’s Latest Off-White x Nike Collab Is Coming in Kids’ Sizes

Koio Is Now Making Teeny-Tiny Versions of Its Trendy Sneakers for Babies

Merrell’s New Bare Steps Collection Helps Toddlers Master Walking

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content