Common Sports Injuries – Part 3 – Shin Splints

Common sports injuries – 3 parts by Mary Thornton BSc Hons MCSP HPC

Shin splints is a common term used to describe pain at the front of the distal part of the leg. True shin splints occurs on the medial aspect of the tibia (shin bone) and can occur due to many reasons such as poor mechanics of the foot or lower limb such as over pronation (flat feet), change of running surface or even undiagnosed stress fractures in the foot. These conditions can result in inflammation of the of soft tissues that connect the muscles to the tibia. Traction forces on these structures can then result in shin pain and inflammation.
It is a common complaint amongst runners and dancers and its symptoms can include:

  • Pain in the shin which can start with exercise but then eases or develops after stopping exercise.
  • swelling in the shin muscle.
  • bumpy sensation on the inside of the shin bone.
  • Pain on ankle movement.If you think you are suffering from shin splints rest and ice therapy will help to reduce the inflammation but also consult a podiatrist or physiotherapist who specializes in sports injuries to help determine the cause of the problem and address any biomechanics imbalances to prevent future episodes of the problem occurring.

Post Author: Mary Thornton

Mary Thornton BSc Hons is a Chartered Physiotherapist & director of The Clinical Pilates Studio in Eastbourne. She also runs teacher training workshops in many aspect of Pilates and movement reeducation.