All About Shin Splints

What are Shin Splints?

Shin splints are most often felt in the front of the leg along the shin bone- the tibia. A shin splint starts at the beginning of an activity like walking or running and it can be quite painful. Most of the time, once the muscle is warmed up the pain goes away but don’t let that fool you! You must pay attention so it does not get worse.

How do I get Shin Splints?

Shin splints are commonly due to the muscle attachment on the shin bone getting separated due to excessive rotational forces. If you have feet that move around a lot, or arches that flatten – called overpronation – this causes the foot to roll inwards, and the leg rotates as well, thereby pulling the muscle at the shin bone.

Shin Splints and Custom Insoles/Custom Orthotics for Shin Splints

Custom orthotics are an excellent way to manage shin splints. When the orthotic supports your foot, it enables the foot to stop falling inwards and therefore the leg stops the internal rotation thus reducing pain.

How to get rid of shin splints?

Shin splints are painful and a good deep tissue massage along the shin bone can make a huge difference. Compression socks also play an important role by holding the muscles of the leg together and compressing them to prevent micro tears along the tibia.

How to prevent shin splints?

A lot of times, shin splints happen when you do too much too soon without an adequate warm-up. If your running shoes are old and the cushioning has eroded, that also makes a difference. Ideally, wear a neutral heavy cushioning shoe and a custom insole to help you with shin splints. If you have tight calf muscles you could also develop shin splints – an active release and stretch on your calf muscles will help if you add that to your warm-up routine. If you are increasing the intensity of your activities or participating in a lot of start and stop motion sports, be aware of the dreaded shin splint and take the necessary measures – warm-up, compression, insoles, good shoes.

Do most runners get shin splints?

If you don’t warm up adequately and change your shoes often you may be a candidate for shin splints. If you run on hilly or uneven terrain, and you increase the intensity of your run, you could also develop shin splints. Soccer players and basketball players are also candidates for shin splints and most will now wear compression gear on their legs as a preventative measure.

If shin splints, or any other foot/ankle/leg condition, is preventing you from living a fully active and happy life, make an appointment with our Athletic Therapist. Burlington’s best Athletic Therapist will do a full lower body assessment and provide you with recommendations to living a fully active and happy life! Our team in the Burlington office will also be able to fit you for compression socks and footwear if necessary. Call us to make an appointment at 289-245-6624 for this complete assessment.

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