Have you been feeling pain in your shins during a weekly run? Found it excruciating and sharp? If so, you may be a victim of shin splints. Medically known as medial tibial stress syndrome, it is a rather common injury amongst both professional and amateur athletes.
What Exactly Is A Shin Splint?
A shin splint occurs due to the stress placed on your shinbone and its connective tissues. Over time, your shin becomes inflamed and painful. While this is generally caused due to wear and tear, certain common situations do increase the risk of shin splits, including:
- Having flat feet and inappropriate footwear for this type of feet. In which case, the impact of your step would cause your foot’s arch to collapse.
- Related to the first point, if your shoes do not feet your feet well, it will not provide adequate support or cushion for impact.
- Repeatedly exercising without first performing sufficient warmup
- Failing to stretch out after exercising
- Having weak ankles, hips or core muscles
Self-Remedies for Shin Splints
If you have spoken to a veteran runner, then you will probably have heard that shin splints by and large heal on their own. Furthermore, he or she may have also advised you to do the following:
- Rest your legs. Shin splints are not a condition that gets better as you work through them. Instead, it is important that you give your shins time off to rest and recuperate.
- Ice your shin. Icing your shin would help to reduce swelling and ease the pain. We recommend that you do so for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours.
Why See A Physiotherapist For Shin Pain
While shin pains do heal by themselves, once you have had them once, you are prone to repeated occurrences. As such, it is worth it to engage physiotherapy clinic Singapore services to properly diagnose your shin and to advice you.
Physiotherapists will conduct a thorough physical exam and even analyse your run form. X-rays or bone scans should also be performed to check for further issues. Once these tests have been completed, your physiotherapist will be able to help you in the following ways:
- Correct your running posture and form to reduce impact on your shin
- Prescribe insoles or orthotics for your shoes, thus ensuring that they are specially fitted for your feet
- Involve you in alternative exercises or sports that avoid worsening the condition of your shin. Examples of such exercises include swimming and core workout.
Signs That Your Shin Has Recovered
After all the rest and treatment, the one question on your mind would be whether you have recovered sufficiently to return to running. Here are 4 signs that your shin splints have healed:
- Your injured leg has regained its flexibility
- You can press against your shin without sharp pain emerging
- Your injured leg has regained its strength
- You can run and sprint without pain