T Nation

Running and Shin Splints

I have started running again but have started developing shin splints that leave me in a lot of pain for a week at times.
I understand the best cure is rest and massage but what is the best way to condition and strengthen you shins.

Thanks

[quote]NOS wrote:
I have started running again but have started developing shin splints that leave me in a lot of pain for a week at times.
I understand the best cure is rest and massage but what is the best way to condition and strengthen you shins.

Thanks[/quote]

Toe raises, 2x15-20 almost to failure, as the last exercise of your lower body day.

I’ve experimented with 1x50 everyday, without any weight, and it’s another option.

Also, make sure you either have specifically-designed running shoes (not cross-trainers, not walking shoes) or look into barefoot-alternatives (Nike Free, Vibram Fivefingers, etc.)

Shoes, shoes, and shoes. They make all the difference. Here’s a link that can help you find the right shoe. Find a good shoe store that has several models/brands and try them on. Specialty stores even have trweadmills you can try the shoes on.

http://www.runningshoes.com/running/control/main

Try to run on softer materials like dirt or grass whenever possible. Asphalt is better than concrete as well.

Interval work may help. Shorter training periods at higher intensity. HIIT.

Thanks guys. I have been running on beach sand but yes will look into the shoes.

I made a post about shin splints last week in the bodybuilding section. Got some good replies if you want to check it out. I still can’t run, but they feel better then they have in the last 12 months.

Yeah I had a shin splint problem too and I splurged and bought some decent running shoes and I haven’t had much of a problem since.

Try everything above, because they might work for you. Also think aboutleading with your heel when you stride.

Shoes that fit your running type are very important. Poor shoes will cause more problems than shin splits.

However, static stretching, icing, and rest never worked for me. The only thing that ever worked for me was running longer. Something about doing an hour long run once a week got them stretched out enough to make the pain go away.

Something i’ve never understood is beach running. Do you run near the water where the ground slants? I gotta think that would be murder on your hips and knees, and maybe your shins too.

Many thanks for your input guys. I think I am am going to continue running but for not as long as I usually do. I will also look at some proper running shoes although a bit dissapointed in my new Asics. The stuff on strengthening your claves and feet should help as well.

Thanks again.

Good shoes are very important, but even with a good pair I’ve still had problems with shin splints. Its important to progress in volume slowly. If you try and run 25 miles a week with no build up you’ll have problems. Aim to increase weekly mileage no more than 10-15% a week.

Echoing everything above, and adding one:

Back when I was a fairly serious cyclist, one thing I had be careful of when I went back to running was that while my lungs and legs were beastly, my various running-specific subsystems couldn’t keep up. For me it was the outer part of my knees, but I had a friend who had shin issues.

If you have made some strength gains, you might have picked up a tendency to overstride, which will give you a more violent heel strike. This is because you can propel yourself farther with the same effort as before. Being conscious of it, and shortening your stride might do the trick. You may have to slow down a bit at first.

If you really have trouble chopping your stride, try running behind someone with shorter legs, and matching their cadence. You’ll naturally cut your stride down.

Also, from a form perspective, you might try moving your weight slightly forward while you run. It will put you more over that front foot and in a better position to “pull” with your hamstrings at impact. This will reduce impact forces slightly. It will also make you faster, once you adapt to it.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:

Toe raises, 2x15-20 almost to failure, as the last exercise of your lower body day.

I’ve experimented with 1x50 everyday, without any weight, and it’s another option.

Also, make sure you either have specifically-designed running shoes (not cross-trainers, not walking shoes) or look into barefoot-alternatives (Nike Free, Vibram Fivefingers, etc.)[/quote]
There’s nothing worse than an injury just when you are getting results, which is what I managed to do getting a little too enthusiastic with the HITT sprints…I’ll try this toe raise trick while my pulled groin slowly heals…Great info CC…

[quote]Blacksnake wrote:
Chris Colucci wrote:

Toe raises, 2x15-20 almost to failure, as the last exercise of your lower body day.

I’ve experimented with 1x50 everyday, without any weight, and it’s another option.

Also, make sure you either have specifically-designed running shoes (not cross-trainers, not walking shoes) or look into barefoot-alternatives (Nike Free, Vibram Fivefingers, etc.)
There’s nothing worse than an injury just when you are getting results, which is what I managed to do getting a little too enthusiastic with the HITT sprints…I’ll try this toe raise trick while my pulled groin slowly heals…Great info CC…

[/quote]

Just be sure that when you’re performing the exercise, your foot is not directly under you. Shoot the working foot more forward to allow a greater range of motion (foot placed more like the pic above, as opposed to having the knees at right angles “sitting properly”.)

we had to run everyday at military school. and i developed the WORST case of shin splints ever. tried massage, toe raises, all of that.

was fixed as soon as i changed brands of shoes to mizunos.

def think about changing out u’re brand of shoe.

I had shin splints last season and all it took was a better pair of shoes and time. I was in the middle of basketball season so I didn’t have time to rest it. Despite all the running and jumping, it still got better just because of the shoes.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
…I’ll try this toe raise trick while my pulled groin slowly heals…Great info CC…

Just be sure that when you’re performing the exercise, your foot is not directly under you. Shoot the working foot more forward to allow a greater range of motion (foot placed more like the pic above, as opposed to having the knees at right angles “sitting properly”.)[/quote]

Will do…