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What Are Shin Splints?

An athlete is poised for take-off in a track event, one knee on the ground, and the other above

If you experience very sore shins during or after a running-based activity then you could have shin splints.

If you feel soreness, pain or even some swelling around your shin bone, then shin splints are the likely cause. The pain will fade once you stop exercising but in extreme cases, the pain can continue and could even lead to a stress fracture. This is why it is important to ask your physiotherapist for advice.

Too much stress caused by repetitive loading on the bones, muscles and joints that surround your shin bone can cause shin splints. This can usually occur after someone has increased their activity level too quickly. But these aren’t the only factors contributing to shin splints. Flat feet, poor-quality footwear, running on concrete, tight lower leg muscles, poor running technique, muscular imbalance, or even being overweight can also cause the condition.

To reduce the risk of shin splints, there are several things you can do. Investing in some decent footwear would be one of the easiest things you could do. Try and avoid running on hard and uneven surfaces all the time.

Another suggestion is to take a more gradual approach if you’re increasing the intensity of your workouts. Don’t jump in feet 1st. Consider a strength and conditioning program to improve your running form and offload your bones and joints.

In most cases, the best way to treat shin splints is to take a break from your regular physical activities and allow your body to recover. You can do low-impact activities such as swimming or biking. Icing the sore area may also be helpful.

We recommend you get in touch with us because we can certainly help you. We can address any biomechanics, release any tight muscles and help you get any weaker muscles stronger!

We can also guide you through safely and gradually raise your level of activity. Whatever you do, don’t ignore them. While shin splints are common, they can also lead to ongoing issues so it’s best you address the condition as soon as you can, just to be sure and also to prevent it from getting worse.