top of page

How to be Proactive with Shin Splints

Common Running Season Injuries

Shin splints are acute painful microtears in the muscle and bone tissue along the tibia of the lower leg caused by chronic overuse and impacts while running. As we are heading into track season, knowing what you can do to help prevent, recover, and treat your body if and when they occur. Shin splints, if left untreated or ignored, can lead to worse injuries such as stress fractures.


  • Quick intense changes in training routines

  • Repetitive activity or hard impacts when running and jumping

  • Running on uneven terrain, hard surfaces, and hills

  • Flat feet or high arches

Treatment / Recovery

  • Rest: - avoiding high-impact exercises but don't give up activity

  • Swimming and biking are options for muscle recovery or warm-up alternatives

  • Ice: - multiple times a day (up to 8) for 15-20 minutes

  • Always ice properly by using a barrier from ice to the skin such as a towel


  • Proper Running Form - Shin splints can also occur if your foot strike or gait is improper. Movement patterns and efficiency are key when running!

  • Avoid Overstressing - Slowly build up your training. Start light and increase intensity and duration appropriately to allow the muscles and bones to adapt. Too much too soon is a real thing!

  • Shoes - Find shoes that are right for you! Replace shoes when wear and tear happens. This means the support and shock absorption is gone!

  • Consider Buying Arch Supports or Insoles - Arch supports are necessary for those with flat feet. Arch supports shock absorption and may prevent shin splint pain.

  • Make sure insoles are specific to your needs and actually will work with your running shoes

  • Insoles will help with the recurrence of shin splints

  • Allow Recovery - and lessen the impact with cross-training

  • Strength Train - Resistance train to stabilize your legs, ankles, hips, and core to help prepare your legs to deal with high-impact sports. Leaning dorsi-flexions are a great exercise to add into your routine


Knowing what causes shin splints and the severity of the injury allows you to take the right steps to help prevent them from occurring. They may not always be able to be avoided and it is tougher to get rid of them once they have started. Take the right steps to recover post-run and think about what is needed to properly prime and warm up your lower body.


bottom of page