Shin Pain Whilst Running? Here's what to do!
If you've been suffering from shin/lower leg pain when running then this article is for you! Here we'll teach you what 'shin splints' actually is, the common causes of it, as well as what you can do about it.
Read on below and feel free to send this post across to someone it may help!
This article is written by Patrick, our Exercise Physiologist, who are the experts in the field of exercise-based rehabilitation, particularly for returning clients successfully back to exercise-related activities (running). If you're based in Sydney near Chatswood or North Sydney he is available to help you with running-related injuries.
What is "shin splints"?
The term “shin splints” is a commonly used term by runners as a nondescript reference of their leg pain, that’s not originating at their calf. True shin splints, otherwise known as Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome, involves miniature fractures to the shin bone (tibia), and can in fact take several weeks to months to fully heal or rehabilitate from.
This article focuses on rehab exercises for generic pain occurring in the lower leg, in and around the anterior (front) or medial (inside) border of the tibia.
What is shin pain often caused by?
Abnormal biomechanics: a rigid foot, excessive foot pronation & foot drop can all increase impact pressure on the shin bone. If this excessive impact pressure is too muscle for your muscle, bone or tendon tissue to handle this can lead to pain and/or injury.
Muscular imbalances: weakness and tightness in the lower leg muscles can decrease shock absorption capacity. Lack of generalised lower limb, core & hip strength can also factor in. This lack of capacity will often lead to your tissue being overloaded, thus leading to pain.
Overuse: Can result from overtraining, not enough recovery methods, and/or your running environment (solely running on pavement/roads). Earn the right to run first by doing strength training, integrate different ground environments (grass, sand, road), and ensure adequate enough sleep.
What you can do about it!
The exercises linked in the button below showcase self-release techniques, localised strength, static and end stage dynamic stability exercises all to help get you out of pain and back to running.
Perform the self-release techniques and localised strength exercises daily if the pain you're experiencing is frequent and quite moderate. If your pain doesn't occur every run or training session, then you need to focus on building up your strength and endurance. Focus on the localised and dynamic stability drills every second daily, performing the self-release techniques as needed.
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