Four Ways Runners Can Prevent and Treat Shin Splints

Running can offer people many benefits like weight loss, diabetes prevention, mental clarity, and much more. Unfortunately, the pressure you put on your legs can often cause shin splints. Many runners complain about sharp pains that occur in between their ankles and knees. Shin pain can be problematic for runners, making them unable to run until they rehabilitate and the pain goes away, . The medical term for shin splints is medial tibial stress syndrome, and the injury typically occurs in beginners. Out of all running injuries, about 35% of them each year are due to shin splints. Because so many runners suffer from the pain, here are some tips for preventing and treating them so you can continue running. 

Switch up Your Exercise

One way to help heal the pain in your shins is to reduce the amount of impact you are putting on them. While running may provide you many benefits, there are a number of other exercises you can do that give you many of those same benefits. Similar cardio activities include bicycling and swimming. If you miss the idea of running altogether, you can switch to aqua jogging. Being in the water helps to take some of the pressure off your shins so you can continue running without the pain. 

Use Compression Socks

While compression socks were once only used for those suffering from diabetes, runners also have found them to be very useful. Compression socks can be worn either during or after your run to help increase blood flow. If you do not have any compression socks, you can stabilize your shin using bandages. Make sure to keep the wrap tighter at the ankle so the compression forces blood flow upward. 

Take Your Time

One of the main reasons people get shin splints is because they start out running too fast and too often. It is important to gradually work up to longer runs to help give your muscles and bones time to adapt. Without proper rest, your muscles can become fatigued, making it harder to continue exercising altogether. 

Pay Attention to Your Stride

Those who have a much wider stride are likely to find themselves suffering from shin splints. Ideally, you should average about 180 steps per minute for both legs. If your stride is too large, then you will take fewer steps per minute. Using a metronome can help you set a pace so that you increase your cadence.