Shin Splints – Treating and Preventing Guide
Also known as medial tibial stress syndrome, shin splints is typically used to refer to pain in the front or inside of the lower leg as a result of small tears occurring in the muscles around the tibia—shin bone.
Research shows that shin splints are more common among beginners and those returning to the sport after an extended layoff, making up roughly 15 percent of all running injuries.
Symptoms of Shin Splints
For most runners, shin splints manifest as throbbing pain in both the front, outer portion of the shin, or in the medial region of the inner side of the leg.
Causes of Shin Splints
Known culprits include:
Drastic changes in training volume. Doing too much too soon before your body is well adapted to handle the new workload.
Having high arches or flat feet. Research suggests that runners with flat feet are more prone.
Running in the wrong shoes.
Running on hard and/or cambered—slightly arched—surfaces and roads.
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How to treat Shin Splints?
Cut back on your training volume. To ease the pain, try icing the affected shin for 15-20 minute three times a day, and keeping them elevated at night to lessen swelling and pain.
Regular stretching, and running with neoprene sleeves might also help. Or consider taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs.
Taping the shin, using StarkTape Kinesiology tape, can also soothe the pain and speed healing.
Just whatever you do, do not run through pain as doing might eventually lead to a stress fracture, a more severe and painful condition.
How to prevent Shin Splints?
To ward off the condition, do the following:
Increase training volume gradually and slowly. This means that you should not increase distance by any more than 10 percent each week.
At first sight of pain, back off your running to a pain-free level, or stop exercising altogether for a few days to a week.
Feel free to pool run, bike, swim, or do any other form of exercise, as long as it’s pain-free.
Strengthen the anterior tibialis muscle on the front of your shin. Good exercises include heel walks and toe taps.
Increase your intake of vitamin D and calcium.
Consider taping the injured shin using StarkTape kinesiology tape or other products to alleviate pain and speed healing. Wearing an air cast ankle brace can also help.
If you are suffering from Shin Splints, the application of kinesiology tape can help you feel better. You can easily learn to apply the tape yourself, enjoying the pain relief it brings. At the same time, taping can help you improve your overall range of motion and forget all about stiffness or other similar problems caused by Shin Splints.