Is there anything I can do to avoid shin splints?

Is there anything I can do to avoid shin splints?

Shin splints account for about 13% of injuries in runners. They can occur as a result of muscle weakness or imbalance.

One way you can avoid shin splints is to run in soft-soled and well-cushioned shoes. Go to a local running store and get a properly-fitted, well-cushioned pair of shoes.

In addition, running on a soft surface such as a padded track is better than running on harder surfaces like concrete or asphalt.

Finally, avoiding sudden increases in training intensity and duration will decrease the chance of developing shin splints.

If you think you have shin splints, see a medical professional to properly diagnose the condition and rule out more dangerous pathologies such as stress fractures. Once the correct diagnosis is made, your doctor may recommend the following treatments:

• Relative rest and taking a break from running or training
• Non-impact cross-training
• Anti-inflammatories
• Stretching program
• No Immobilization, due to weakness
• Shoe replacement every 250 miles. One study reported more than 60% loss of shock absorption after 250miles
• Re-establish distance before speed, a gradual return to sport over 6wks otherwise recurrence is predictable
• No treatment combination above works better than rest alone