How do you avoid or recover from shin splints?
The term “shin splints” describes pain felt along the front of your lower leg, at the shin bone, between the knee and ankle. Shin splints are more common among people who participate in strenuous physical activities, especially stop-start sports such as tennis, netball, soccer, or basketball.
Shin splints is a cumulative stress disorder. That means it usually happens over time with repeated pounding and stress on the bones, muscles, and joints of the lower legs; without enough recovery time, your body isn’t able to naturally repair and restore itself.
Some remedies* to try:
- Immediate relief includes over the counter anti-inflammatory (eg ibuprofen) and ice packs applied to the aggravated area to reduce swelling.
- Take a break from strenuous physical activities and give your legs time to rest and repair. The discomfort will usually resolve itself in about two weeks. During this time, we recommend engaging in low impact alternative activities such as swimming or walking.
- Give yourself some extra support with our Support Insoles – they absorb sock and also take pressure off your muscles .
As always – prevention is better than the cure!
The two most common reasons for shin splints are overtraining and worn out footwear.
If you want to avoid shin splints it’s a good idea to prepare your muscles with warm-up exercises before you workout. If you’re trying something new (ie moving from running on a path to beach runs, playing more netball than usual and so on) then build up to it over time while your muscles get stronger! And in-between workouts, allow time for sufficient rest and recovery – include some stretching, strengthening exercises and massage.
Finally – make sure you have good gear… think our supportive insoles (try the Lightfeet Support Insole) and sneakers that aren’t worn out.
*These suggested remedies are for mild cases only, if your symptoms persist for more than 24 hours please consult with your physiotherapist or podiatrist.