One of the things that keeps the life of a family living with someone who requires AFOs, or custom orthotics in general, interesting is trying to find footwear that actually fit the orthotics. Forget looks, colours, brands, prices- if it fits, you pretty much just buy it!
Shall we also begin the discussion about the fact that this dreaded footwear search is also required to accommodate for the different seasons that, we, here in YEG, Alberta we are blessed with? Previously, when raining outside or during those awkward spring melt/fall wetness periods when rubber boots are essential, I’ve had to either pass on fun activities for the kids, Breanna’s feet just got super soaked, or she would wear her winter boots (if she even had any) through it all. This past spring, I found the solution to all of our problems- MyMayu boots.
MyMayu’s mission is to, “create innovative outdoor gear made from durable materials that results in happy familes.” Have they ever done that right! Not only are they perfect for any child, but also for any orthotic-sporting child who requires that magic shoes to be functional for all seasons. Everyone NEEDS to know about MyMayu boots. They’re truly the unicorn of boots. Want to know why? Let me tell you!
2- There are 3 different styles to choose from, each with a variety of colours.
- Muddy Munchkins– Perfect for nature walks and adventures.
- Explorer– Outdoor boot that could replace a rubber or snow boot that is used for all kinds of terrain. For a narrower foot (compared to Wandered). Added wetness protection compared to Muddy Munchkins.
- Wanderer– Outdoor boot that could also replace a rubber or snow boot. Used for a variety of terrains. Basically a wider version of the Explorer boot.
- For comparison of Muddy Munchkins vs. Explorer boot read here.
- For comparison of Explorer vs. Wanderer boot read here.
3- All styles are flexible yet durable to handle all kinds of terrain and play. Their tethers also allow for many adjustment possibilities and flexibility to further customize the fit of MyMayu boots. Whether playing in the rain, mud, snow, enjoying walking trails, or even meeting princesses and riding carnival rides, MyMayu boots are the way to go!
4- They fold up to be super compact! How awesome are these to store and travel with when they fold up as seen below?!
5- They’re a Canadian company, based out of British Columbia. You know how much I appreciate and value voting with my dollars by purchasing a product from a local or Canadian company. The boots are also made in North America.
6- They’re made from recyclable materials because that carbon footprint is important.
7- Last but not least, and the most important for us, is the ease of use and comfort that MyMayu Boots have to offer a child with AFO braces. This needs to be shouted from the rooftops! We chose the Wanderer style of MyMayu boots for the main reason that they’re a wider fit to accommodate for Breanna’s AFOs. I always size up for her to fit the length and width of the AFOs. Breanna is currently an 8/9 in a shoe, however, with her AFOs, she’s an 11. I went with the 11/12 to be safe. I’d rather them be slightly big than too small too quick. They fit perfect while definitely allowing for room to grow. I’m not sure that with the AFOs, the Helios Liner would fit, however, I’m excited to try so that she could wear them during the winter as well!
All MyMayu styles will accommodate for AFOs and other variations of orthotics up until about size 7/8 and then the Wanderer style is best as it is a wider fit. For extra information on MyMayu Boot styles for AFOs, KAFOs, and SMOs, you can read MyMayu’s blog post here.
**The only down side to wearing AFOs, with many different types of footwear, shocks, shoes, dresses, etc. is that there are certain parts of the braces that cause wear and tear. If pants, for example, are worn over top of AFOs, often the AFOs will rub holes through the pants due to the hardware or velcro being in that particular spot on the AFO. It’s just one of those things that comes with the territory of wearing AFOs. Due to the material of the upper shaft of MyMayu boots, this same wear and tear is a possibility. I would recommend placing some sort of moleskin material or wrap on those areas of the braces notorious for causing tearing to prevent damage to the shafts of your MyMayu boots.
MyMayu boots have been a lifesaver for Breanna in the footwear department for the main reasons that they accommodate for her AFOs and allow her to now experience certain parts of childhood that she wasn’t able to comfortably or warmly before. Not only are they amazing for children with orthotics, but for any child from infancy and up (to youth size 3). As Suzanne with MyMayu says it best- “See you outside soon!”