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How to Tie Shoelaces: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learning how to tie shoelaces is a child’s rite of passage and requires a level of coordination that most children don’t possess until they’re at least five years old. The learning process takes time, but with patience and practice from both parent and child, your little one will be putting their own shoes on in no time.

There are many different ways to tie your shoelaces, but when you’re teaching your child to tie their own, there’s no better place to start than with the standard method or the bunny ears technique. We recommend sitting side by side with your child so that you have the same perspective, and have a shoe each to practise on so that they can mimic your actions.

Place the shoe on a flat surface and let the laces fall to either side of the shoe. Then follow one of these simple step-by-step methods:

The bunny ears method

Step 1

Tie a knot by taking a lace in each hand, threading one lace over the other and tucking it back under from the other side. Pull them tight and they should form a knot in the middle of the shoe.

Step 2

Make a bunny ear loop with one of the laces and hold it between your thumb and your first two fingers. The loop should be quite small, and the tail should be long.

Step 3

Do the same with the other lace.

Step 4

Tie a knot with the bunny ear loops. Place one loop over the other, tuck it behind the other and then thread it through the hole that has been created.

Step 5

Hold both bunny ear loops and pull them tight. Your shoe should now be nicely tied.

The standard method

Step 1

Tie a knot by taking a lace in each hand, threading one lace over the other and tucking it back under from the other side. Pull them tight and they should form a knot in the middle of the shoe.

Step 2

Make a loop with one of the laces and hold it between your thumb and your first two fingers. The loop should be quite small.

Step 3

Use your other hand to wrap the other lace around the loop. This should create a hole between the looped shoelace and the shoelace wrapped around.

Step 4

Pull the shoelace through the hole to form another loop.

Step 5

Hold both loops and pull them tight. Your shoe should now be nicely tied.

Practise tying laces with your child until they can do it themselves. You could also try using a homemade practice board if shoes are bit too tricky initially. It won’t be long before your child has mastered tying their own shoelaces and are ready for the next challenge.

Browse our range of kids’ shoes to find the perfect pair for your child to practise tying their shoelaces with.