Shin splints are one of the most common types of injury to the leg. While it’s most commonly found among runners, it can also occur in other sports and activities that involve a lot of running, such as: basketball, track & field, and soccer.
3 Facts About Shin Splints
#1 – Repetitive stress is a major factor.
Shin splints are caused by repetitive stress to the connective tissue in the lower leg. In severe cases this may also include bone irritation.
#2 – Lack of exercise variety is another contributor.
High intensity and lack of variety of exercise are the key causes of shin splint pain.
This pain is described as a soreness or tenderness along your shin bone and may also include mild swelling of the lower leg. If symptoms are not controlled with over the counter pain relievers, ice and rest, you should seek medical attention.
#3 – It’s highly treatable without surgery.
Physical therapists can provide treatment to reduce the pain and inflammation while also assessing gait, footwear and readiness to return to sports.
Prevent Shin Splints
In order to prevent shin splints it is advised that you:
- Increase exercise routines gradually.
- Incorporate cross training with other activities (versus doing the same activity every day).
- Wear supportive footwear or orthotics if necessary.
In the following video, WakeMed physical therapist, Kristina Jolley, discusses the causes and treatment for shin splints as well as ways to prevent shin splints from occurring in the future.
About Kristina (Jolley) Wolfe, PT
Kristina (Jolley) Wolfe is a physical therapist at WakeMed Physician Practices – Cambridge Village, located in Apex, NC. Visit WakeMed Physician Practices – Physical Therapy for more information about physical therapy services at WakeMed (including requesting an appointment).