What Are Shin Splints?
Shin splints is a condition that is most often affected in runners and is also known as Shin medial tibial stress syndrome, which is a common ache in the muscle. Typically, runners are affected by this the most due to incorrectly prepping the body before physical activity, for example; not warming-up the body by stretching before going on a run. When you are frequently running, you are also straining the muscles in your legs and those who play sports like soccer, basketball, or tennis, face the same risks.
Most runners already have tight claves, so when repetitive stress of running aggravates the muscles on the front part of the lower legs it can cause shin splints.
How to Treat Shin Splints
The correct stretches can help prevent shin splints or relieve pain and discomfort greatly. Generally, shin splints go away on their own, but seeking advice from a physical therapist will ultimately be your best option for longer-lasting treatment, especially if you play sports.
We recommend you take a break from running until the pain subsides, and then ease back into your training with lower intensities and gradually building yourself back up.
Tips to Avoid Shin Splints
As previously mentioned, stretching can help maintain the flexibility in your legs and can promote healing by keeping them loose and relaxed. Holding stretches for at least 10 seconds will be most beneficial
Other tips that can help you avoid getting shin splints include:
- Correct shoes: Foot mechanics can predispose you to shin splints, so it’s important to replace your shoes and be fitted professionally about every 300 miles of running.
- Running on softer surfaces: If you run daily on hard surfaces like concrete or asphalt, you increase the impact and force transferred through your legs.
- Always be aware of aches and pains: If your shins start to hurt while you run, stop, and massage the shins for 5-10 minutes to help with inflammation.
Interested in physical therapy for a sports injury? Contact ProFysio at (732) 812-5200 to schedule your free consultation.