Putting Start-rite shoes through a proper test on the climbing wall

There has been SO much uproar recently over kids school shoes, namely girls ones not being up to the job and inappropriately named that I thought I would set about this review of the kids new Start-rite school shoes with a different approach.

It’s been said that many girls shoe designs are flimsy and not suitable for playground activities and the names have also been criticised in the media recently for being sexist. For what it’s worth I really don’t care what a pair of shoes are called, I have never taken the kids into a shop and said do you want the Dolly Bird shoes or the Dolly Mixture ones holding them up for them to see – I’ve either let them choose the style they like and gone with those or randomly plucked some from the shelves and asked for their sizes – names of shoes have NEVER been mentioned and apart from it being printed on the box I can’t say I’ve even taken any notice…..who cares what they are called anyway! Kids won’t go into school and say “My shoes are called Dolly Mixture”……not unless you make a point of telling them that’s what they are called.

***I’m only mentioning the shoe names we were sent below so you can find them for yourselves on the website….not to make a big deal over names…..I really don’t care if they were called batch number 2001, Black shoes 101 or even Betty, Fred or Late for your dinner….they are just named to help identify them in store rooms and online***

Emmy was recently sent the Princess Elza shoes from the Start-rite back to school range and upon first look the soles looked to have only a medium amount of grip on them – however as always you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover so we decided to pack these into our suitcase for our holiday to Butlins and put them to the test properly on the climbing wall.

The Princess Elza shoes are black leather shoes with a scuff resistant toe protection, they are lightweight and flexible with a padded ankle for extra comfort and support.

They also have Riptape fastening to help keep them on securely which is great for school when children need to take them off for PE and put them back on easily. They also have removable insoles to help keep feet fresh.

These also come with 3 removable decorations which slide on and off of the strap to change the look of the shoes. They come with a silver heart, silver crown and a black bow – these slide on and off with ease, a little too easily at times. Emmy has managed to lose the decorations on a few occasions when she hasn’t fastened the strap before throwing them into the shoe basket or just kicked them off across the room so I don’t think she will be using these decorations on them for school as I know that on the first day there will be tears when she can’t find them – they can be saved for weekends and parties maybe when we want to change the look of the shoes to wear with dresses or leggings.

Harry was sent the Extreme Pri shoes from the back to school range, these are a cross between school shoes and trainers. Very study with high backed ankle designs. These also have scuff resistant toe protection and feature a rubber toe and flexible rubber sole for durability and comfort.These have double Riptape Velcro straps which hold fast and can be easily undo and done up again by young children. They also have a tag hold at the back to help children to pull them on with ease. Because these are more like trainers he has found them to be heavier to wear than other school shoes he is used to but they have a great grip and are really comfortable for him – of course it’s a huge bonus that he can get them on and off easily himself and they are very durable as he has a tendency to scuff shoes so quickly by dragging his feet behind his scooter when riding to school.

So, are they up to the test of the climbing wall? As lets face it, ALL children climb – be that trees, over the equipment at school or up the hilly banks in the park.

I’ll let you decide that for yourselves:

Climbing wall at Butlins Bognor Regis

As you can see – they had no trouble climbing the wall wearing their new school shoes, with more practice they could easily reach the top of the wall I’m sure but nerves got the better of them.

school shoes put through a proper test

Both have a very supportive sole, flexible to work with their movements and not hinder and although they missed their footings on a few occasions they are still looking as good as new and free from scratches and scuffs.

I can see these lasting the school year easily….well until the kids feet grow again that is, now that they have the climbing bug I’m thinking I need to look into T-Shirt printing UK to get some tops printed which say “I conquered the climbing wall” ready for when they do finally reach the top.

Disclaimer: We were sent these shoes in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts and opinions are our own and unbiased. We were guests of Butlins for our break however we paid to use the climbing wall as an additional extra during our stay.


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13 thoughts on “Putting Start-rite shoes through a proper test on the climbing wall

  1. Rock climbing looks such fun! My two would love this when they are older. The girls shoes do look a lot more flimsy that the boys shoes, but this is something that needs to be tackled across the entire industry.

  2. Wow you really did put them through a test and it looks like they did really well. I remember Startrite being firm favourites when I was a child 🙂

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