Post # 1
Do any of the other Bees get shin splints? Anyone know how to help them and help make them go away / prevent them in the future?
I recently got back into working out 3-4 days a week doing primarily rowing, swimming, and running/walking. I’d been pretty lax about working out since around April 2010 although I’d been in great shape then, having completed 3 half marathons from December 2009 – March 2010.
Rowing and swimming give me no problems but when I try to run (or even power walk), after just 1/2 mile, I start getting absolutely terrible shin splints. I’ve never really had issues with shin splints before so I don’t really know what to do to help prevent them so I can actually build up my distances again (cardiovascularly, I feel fine but the shin splints prevent me from running very far).
Can any Bees provide insight?
Post # 3
I am a runner as well and get shin splints occasionally. I have used this website as a resource: http://www.thestretchinghandbook.com/archives/shin-splints.php
As far as I know, this will go away if you are doing things to prevent it, but the best thing you can do right now is to REST your legs. You can def. still swim and row, but it’s the pressure that you are placing your legs under from the downward force of running that is causing the shin pain.
I also read somewhere that your calf muscles have to compensate for the force that your shins aren’t used to, so stretching your calf muscles A LOT and doing calf raises during the time you aren’t running is a great help! This really helped me alot.
I know, shin splints hurt like a you-know-what, but I think that they are preventable! Good luck!
Post # 4
This will perhaps sound crazy but for now while you have them, walk around on your heels backwards. I used to get shin splints a lot when I did highland dance (all that jumping!) and that is what our instructor told us to do. Generally helped out a bit.
Post # 5
The best immediate relief is ice (and rest). Freeze water in dixie cups and then give your shins an ice massage. I’m usually too lazy to do this, but it totally works!
I typically get shin splints worse when power walking than with running because of the difference in motion. But it’s also all about surface. Maybe try to find a grassy area or an actual track to run on? Also maybe it’s time for new shoes? I’ve read a lot about running shoes and it doesn’t seem like pricier = better, but I recently bought a $120 pair and my legs/feet have never felt better. They’re Asics and I love them.
Post # 6
I am a personal trainer—shoes shoes shoes! If you dont have the proper shoes you will always sustain an injury! Get fitted for ones that are made for your arch and whether you need a stability shoe or not!
Post # 7
I get them, and I was told to get new shoes. And I’m a dancer…I don’t run or anything like that.
Post # 8
I also agree with the PPs who mentioned shoes. It is so important for runners to have the most suitable shoes based upon the arch and shape of their foot, as well as their running style. I would recommend you check your area for a running speciality store with sales people who are specially trained to analyze your feet and gait. They should look at your foot sitting and standing and should watch you run on a treadmill. It can also be helpful to bring in the shoes you currently wear for running so they can look at the wear pattern on the soles. If your pain still persists, you should definitely see your doctor because it is possible you are developing a stress reaction (a percursor to a stress fracture). I am a certified athletic trainer but no one can analyze your problem over the internet, so if you have persistant pain, see your doctor!
Post # 9
I get them a LOT and they are terrible. Stretch by standing with the balls of your feet on a curb and slowly lower your heels toward the ground and pull yourself back up. Also, go to a running store and have them assess whether you overpronate, etc. when you run, because depending on your stride, you will need a specific shoe to compensate for how you run. And finally, when you’re done running, lie in bed and place frozen bags of peas on your shins. (They stay in place better than bags of ice.) I ran a lot in college and I’d get them so badly I had to have x-rays to see if I’d done actual damage to my shins. If you find they persist, which mine still sometimes do even with all this, take to using an elliptical to substitute for a run or two during the week. It’ll relieve some of the pressure off your shins.
Post # 10
I will agree with the PPs about getting good shoes. Another key things to know is that you should stretch before you work out and when you are done put some ice on the location it hurts for about 30 minutes. It will help numb them and reduce the swelling caused from shin splints. (these are all things my coaches in HS told me for my long distance and XC running)
Post # 11
So if I already have good shoes with proper insoles based on how I run and how my feet strike the ground then it sounds like I don’t have much option besides rest and ice.
I’ve already been to a specialty running store and did the whole feet / running analysis because I was having knee issues after my race last February. The new shoes / insoles fixed the problem immeadiately and I hadn’t had any issues since until these shin splits started cropping up.
Post # 12
@Mrs.KMM: Have you been running in the same shoes since February? Ideally, running shoes should be replaced every 300-500 miles (it sounds like you’re pretty well-educated in this area already, so I doubt you’re running in old shoes). What type of surface do you run on? If you’re a treadmill, street, or track runner, you could benefit from a change of terrain. Could you try trail running or running on the grass or the beach? Basically, “shin splints” are usually caused by an overcompensation of the tendons in your lower legs, and if you already have appropriate shoes and insoles, you could have a weakness in the muscles of your feet, and switching your terrain could help. If you could see a doctor and get referred to a PT, he or she could also give you some more strengthening ideas.
Really, in my opinion, ice is not the answer. It is not addressing the cause of the problem. I also think you should definitely see your doctor to rule out stress reactions/fractures, especially if you’re a long-time runner.
Post # 13
Shin splints is a chronic overuse injury. However, what you are explaining in your post sounds more like anterior compartment syndrome. Shin splints hurt ALL the time even when not exercising (just squating down hurts) whereas compartment syndrome is when the blood that is sent to your muscles can’t leave the anterior compartment they are cased in which results in pressure build up which results in pain while you are working out (you will not get any pain while not working out). Power walking is the worst for this because power walking uses these muscles the most.
Shin Splints you will feel as pain on the medial side of your tibia, anterior compartment syndrome you will feel pain on the lateral side of your tibia and this area will be really hard and painful to touch. This is also a chronic injury and actually harder to deal with.
Does this sound more like what you have?
If so let me know and I will give you ideas on how to help it!
Post # 14
@kirabee: They are the same shoes I’ve had since February but I basically wasn’t running hardly at all from April 2010 to December 2010 (yeah – I got kind of lazy there for a bit) so they aren’t at 300-500 miles yet. I run on both treadmills and outside on the road/sidewalks. I’ll try to stick to the grass as much as possible next time I run outside and see if that helps.
@FMM: Humm …. well I only have the pain when I’m working out and if I slow my run/power walk to a slow walk the pain gradually receeds. It does seem to be more straight down the front of my shin to somewhat on the lateral side (not really medial as much). I’ve not reached down to feel if they feel harder than normal. Next time I get them, I’ll check that (although I’m swimming for my workout tonight so it may be a couple days before I can check on that).
Post # 15
I used to get them all the time when I ran cross country in high school. I remember the trainer would put heat underneath my calves and ice on my shins. So you have heat on the bottom and ice on top. Apparently that’s the best way to treat them. It did work for me.
Post # 16
@Mrs.KMM: That is interesting. Shin split do hurt ALL the time. Like when you are walking you feel like you have to shuffle your feet so you don’t have to lift your toes.