What Does GS Mean in Shoes? [In Depth Overview]

Numerous individuals are curious about what GS means in shoes, particularly when they’re shopping for children’s or women’s footwear. Shopping for shoes can be overwhelming enough without having to decipher mysterious technical terms like “GS.” But don’t worry, we’ve got your back. In this article, we will decode the meaning of “GS” in shoes, explore its history, and explain how it affects your shoe-shopping experience. 

GS is an acronym for “Grade School” and refers to a size category of shoes designed for school-age kids, typically 6 to 12 years old. GS is a specific modification for children’s shoes, as seen in Nike’s Jordan line. Other children’s size categories include PS (Preschool), TD (Toddler), and BT (Baby). PS is smaller than GS, TD is smaller than PS, and BT is the smallest size. Checking for PS, TD or BT sizes will help find shoes for babies, toddlers and preschoolers.

Bonus Read: What size is 7y in Women’s Nike

What does GS mean in Shoes?

GS stands for “Grade School,” indicating that the shoe size is intended for children in grade school. Grade school typically includes children in the range of ages 6-16 years old, depending on their shoe size and the specific brand’s sizing options. GS shoes are not to be confused with toddler sizes or adult sizes, as they are specifically designed to fit the growing feet of children.

It is important to note that the sizing for GS shoes is different from standard adult sizes. For example, a women’s shoe size 7 would typically convert to a youth GS size 5.5. This is because GS sizes are based on a different sizing scale, taking into account the specific needs and measurements of a child’s growing feet. It is recommended to consult a shoe size chart before purchasing GS shoes to ensure a proper fit.

The purpose of shoes labeled “GS” is to provide children with shoes that are comfortable, durable, and stylish. These shoes often feature bright colors, fun designs, and unique features that make them stand out from other shoe styles.

Some shoes labeled “GS” may even have special features such as extra cushioning or arch support, making them ideal for active children.

GS shoes are available in a variety of styles and brands, offering more options for children to express their personal style while still providing necessary support and comfort for their developing feet. Popular brands such as Nike, Adidas, and Reebok offer GS sizing options for their shoes, giving parents and children an array of choices to choose from.

One of the benefits of purchasing GS shoes is that they are often less expensive than adult sizes. Children typically outgrow their shoes quickly, and purchasing GS sizes can be a cost-effective solution for parents who want to provide their children with quality footwear without breaking the bank.

In addition to GS sizing, there are also other shoe size categories available for children, such as PS (Preschool) and TD (Toddler). Preschool sizes generally cover children aged 2-5 years old, while toddler sizes are intended for infants and young children up to 2 years old. It is important to note that these size categories vary by brand, so it is essential to check each brand’s specific sizing chart before making a purchase.

GS Shoe Size Chart

Here is GS shoes size chart that distinguishes from Adults shoes size:

3.5 Y335.522.58.9
4 Y3.536239.1
4.5 Y436.523.59.3
5 Y4.537.523.59.3
5.5 Y538249.4
6 Y5.538.5249.4
6.5 Y63924.59.6
7 Y6.540259.8

Adidas GS Shoes Size Chart

Adidas specifies GS shoes size for young children between 8 and 16 years of age. Adidas doesn’t mention ‘Y’ adjacent to the GS shoes sizes like Nike.

Here is the GS shoes size chart by Adidas:

Heel-toe measurementUSUKEU
8.9″4436 2/3
9.0″5537 1/3
9.4″6638 2/3
9.5″6.56.539 1/3
9.8″7.57.540 2/3

Reebok GS Shoes Size Chart


GS Shoes Size and Quality vs Adults Shoes Size and Quality

GS size in children’s shoes or sneakers can be from US 3.5Y to 7Y. Since men’s shoes size starts usually starts from US7, there isn’t any sizing difference between US7 and US7Y size.

However, if you look at the quality and price of both sizes i.e. 7Y and 7, there would be a huge difference. This is because, for children’s shoes, the material of shoes is not that durable compared to the Adults’ shoes. On the other hand, men’s shoes have higher cushioning, high-quality material, and durability. I have explained this in detail in my guide: “Can adults wear children running shoes?”

However, some companies are now focusing on including more cushioning in GS grade shoes for active children to offer cushioning to their growing feet.

So, if you ask: Is GS size also for adults? I would say adults can also wear gs size in shoes if the foot size is less than US7 for men and US8.5 for women. For men, US 7 equals US 7Y, but for women, US8.5 equals US7Y.

So, if a woman wants to buy a GS size, she needs to subtract 1.5 from its shoe size to get the right GS size in shoes

Do note that GS and regular shoe size quality will be different. This is because children feet are in the growth stage, due to which shoe brands do not put extra material in making children or big kids shoes. So, as an adult, you can wear GS size shoes for casual walks. But, don’t try to run in them as you’ll end up hurting your feet and damaging the shoes.

Can Adults Wear GS Size Shoes?

If you have a standard width or petite feet, then you can buy GS size in shoes. But if you have swollen feet or wide forefoot, i.e. in 2E or 4E widths, then the GS shoe toe box will not be spacious enough to fit your feet. You shouldn’t take a risk in wearing GS shoes in that condition just for the sake of saving a few bucks.

Also, note that GS size does not take into account arch length, instep height, forefoot width, and heel width. These features of feet don’t matter so much in growing big kids. So, you should first try two different gs shoe sizes to fit your feet. There are chances that you may have to go for a half size up if you have a high instep height and a wide forefoot.

GS vs PS Shoes Size

GS shoe size is for big kids, having an age between 11 and 13 years, while PS shoe size is for little kids, having an age between 3 and 11 years. PS stands for “Pre-School”. Moreover, the GS shoe size is a bit wider compared to the PS shoe size. Moreover, some adults can manage to fit their feet in GS shoe size shoes, while PS shoe size can be only worn by toddlers or little kids.

Measuring Your Child’s Feet For Shoes 

As a parent, nothing is more important to us than making sure our children have the best of everything—including the best shoes. Knowing the right size shoes to buy your kids is essential to ensure the shoes fit properly and are comfortable.

Before we get started, it’s essential to note that children’s feet grow quickly, and their sizes can change at different rates. As a result, it’s recommended to measure your child’s feet periodically to ensure they are still wearing the right size.

Heel-toe length is the most important to determine before selecting shoe size as the size chart is based on the heel-toe length.

The first step in measuring the heel-toe length is to gather the necessary equipment. You’ll need a piece of paper, a pen, and a ruler. It’s also important to have your child wear socks, or the type of hosiery they will wear with the shoes you’re measuring for, to get an accurate measurement.

Then, have your child stand with their heel pressed against a wall or vertical surface, with their foot flat on the paper. Make a small mark at the tip of their longest toe. Repeat this process for both feet, as one foot may be longer than the other.

Using a ruler, measure the distance between the mark and the back of the heel for both feet. It’s important to measure from the longest point of the toe, which may not necessarily be the largest or widest part. This length can be then compared with a size chart to determine the appropriate size for your child.

It’s important to note that different brands may have slightly different sizing conventions, so it’s recommended to check each brand’s size chart before making a purchase. Additionally, shoes that fit properly should allow for some wiggle room in the toe area, as well as a snug fit in the heel for support.

It’s important to note that different brands may have slightly different sizing conventions, so it’s recommended to check each brand’s size chart before making a purchase. Additionally, shoes that fit properly should allow for some wiggle room in the toe area, as well as a snug fit in the heel for support.

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