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3/14/13 1:37 P

In my years of experience in coaching,track athletes, cross country runner and road runners I have found one common problem, faulty running mechanics causing the foot strike to be on the heel instead of the correct mid foot strike. Running with your feet instead of on them causing over striding leading to heel strike with a straight leg with the knee locked of semi locked. This prevents the natural shock absorption of landing on the mid foot with the knee unlocked and the body centre of mass over the foot strike.

The current generation of over engineered, over padded, elevated heel and over priced running shoes cause people to land with a heel strike. On my Spark page is a picture in the gallery of two runners side by side one running with a proper stride and foot strike and the other running to injury.

UKJENN231 Posts: 45
3/13/13 10:41 P

My husband had bad shin splints for several years.. He got advice about exercises, resting, starting slowly, from personal trainers, etc. He tried calf compression sleeves. He got fit for running shoes and was told he was "neutral." Recently we went to a running store and he was going to buy more calf sleeves. He just happened to ask the cashier if these were the most effective things for shin splints. She told him that if he was having shin splints, he was wearing the wrong shoes. She fit him for shoes (actually, it was at the same store as before - she said the other associate was wrong) and found he was a pronator. He got new shoes and it immediately helped. No more shin splints for him as long as he is wearing the right shoes.

TAMRASTAYTON SparkPoints: (2,604)
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Posts: 27
3/13/13 9:59 P

I suffer from shin splints too! I love to run but, can't handle the pain. I actually did my own research and found many topics indicating stretching and strength training that focuses on your calf area will reduce shin splints. You are getting them because it's too much strain on your muscles. That's why you should wait a day before running again. I just actually went and bought "active dr scholls for her" replacement insoles that help relief and prevent shin splints. I bought them from walmart for $20. Best of luck!

HAWTLIKEME SparkPoints: (21,813)
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Posts: 905
3/13/13 9:47 P

Thanks so much. All this info. is so helpful. I haven't done any interval jogging on the TM in a while so I guess starting on the road yesterday in the wrong shoes (made for dance, not running) probably was pretty dumb eh? Add to that that I've been trying more calf work to re-condition the one that had never quite gotten back into shape after achilles tendon re-attachment surgery a couple of years ago and having worn high heels for the first time to work. Yeah, the spring weather made me lose my mind and now I pay the price. Thanks for all the advice, though. It will help me to move forward and not make the same mistakes again, one hopes.

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 46,222
3/13/13 9:35 P


Shin splints are one of the most complaints a new runner will experience and many times it is just an adaptation to the rigors of the sport due to an underdeveloped anterior tibialis muscle. That being said, if you develop severe pain, especially in one leg, you will want to rule a more serious issue, such as a stress fracture.

A few things you do want to do are:

1. Get fitted for running shoes if you have not done so.
2. Make sure you are allowing adequate recovery between runs (as a new runner running every other day will suffice).
3. If you can vary your running surface (concrete tends to be most taxing on the muscles and joints) that may help.
4. Ice you shins after running (never before as you do not want to mask any discomfort during the run itself).
5. Do the stretches below when you are not running as these will help develop your anterior tibialis.
6. If you ever feel a sharp pain or you cannot bear weight, stop running and see your doctor as a more serious condition known as a stress fracture can mimic shin splints.

Alphabet stretch
Sit in a chair with your leg extended in front of you. Trace the alphabet in cursive with your toes trying not to break the rhythm. Do this on each leg 3-5 times, 2-3 times a day.

Marble Pick-ups

Put marbles on the floor and pick them up with your toes and place in a cup. Do this 1-2 times daily with each foot.

Towel Scrunch

Place a towel flat on a wood/tile floor. Sit in a chair and then use your toes to scrunch the towel in a heap. Do once on each foot daily.

Sock drape

Fill a tube sock with gravel or coins (that you find on your walk/runs....LOL), seal with rubber band. Sit down and drape the sock with the coins or gravel equally distributed over your foot....then lift your foot toward the ceiling. Do this 10 times each foot several times a day.

You do not have to do all these exercises, I just gave several options, but you will want to do these to help strengthen the lower leg.


Coach Nancy

You do not have to do all these exercises, I just gave several options, but you will want to do these to help strengthen the lower leg.

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,443
3/13/13 9:07 P

Try the Spark article "Tips and Hints to Deal With Shin Splints"

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
Fitness Minutes: (15,545)
Posts: 9,713
3/13/13 7:49 P

Runner's World has a great video on shinsplints. First t hing you should do is check with a doctor to be sure there's not an actual stress fracture involved.

This one has helped me a lot, but the single biggest thing I've done was get properly fitted for the right pair of shoes.

LOVEMOUSE82 SparkPoints: (3,788)
Fitness Minutes: (2,976)
Posts: 349
3/13/13 7:45 P

Hey I'm still new to running and was just wondering is there a way to prevent shin splints? I'm looking forward to following this thread closely. I'm so sorry OP is suffering from them but thanks for starting this thread....

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (112,042)
Posts: 46,222
3/13/13 7:42 P


Are you getting treatment?

Coach Nancy

HAWTLIKEME SparkPoints: (21,813)
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Posts: 905
3/13/13 7:41 P

AGAIN!! Arrgggh!

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