Shin plints: Shin splints are the typical first injury to walkers and runners...due to too much walking or running too soon.

Just one run or walk can cause shin splints. One run or walk can be over training for your body...if you start too vigorously, or go too far, or use poor shoes, or exercise on too harsh a surface such as concrete.


Gentle and enjoyable exercise is the key to regular exercise

Some people like to call shin splints "medial tibial stress syndrome" due to pain of the inner shin muscle. It also effects the outer shin muscle, the tibialis anterior.

Shin Splints

The most likely injury for beginner runners and walkers is:
SHIN SPLINTS - painful shins
A stress fracture pain is likely to be a continuous pain and
restricted to one spot. Do not run.
If you have a more diffuse pain or tenderness in the lower third
of the leg on the inside, or along the entire shin, a fracture is less
likely. Pain is felt on extending the toes and weight bearing. It
hurts if you press the area with your finger. Physiologically, itís
an inflammation of the tendons OR muscle in this area. Pain
eases when youíre well warmed up, but resumes at the end of
exercise. 
Causes - Running with the weight too far forward; 
	striking the ground with the first third of the foot; 
	over-striding;
	shoes too tight around the toes;
	inflexible shoes; 
	weak arches may be present;
	tight calf muscles stress the shin structures;
	running or walking on hard surfaces;
	overpronation;
	overtraining is its trademark;
	beginners are very susceptible.
Prevention--Flexible foreshoe--use a combination or slip lasted
design. Use a heel lift to reduce jarring, along with arch supports
or padding if necessary. Run or walk fewer miles; do them on softer
surfaces. Pool run. Bring back road mileage a mile or two at a
time as you ease back to full training. Use orthotics or
anti-pronation shoes.
The shin muscle works against the large calf muscles; the shin
muscle is the last muscle to warm up and the first to cool down.
With this in mind, do an exercise to build it up--the paint pot
exercise, or hooking an elastic belt or similar item under the toes
and pushing against it ten times each day should suffice.
Wearing long thick socks will help to avoid the chill when not
running, making it easier to warm up the muscle before you do
run or walk. 
Treatment - Flexibility work: ice alternating with moist heat...then
put the muscle through its full range of motion. Use NSAIDs. 

Compartment Syndrome

	COMPARTMENT SYNDROME is a muscle pain due to the 
muscles growing faster than the
sheath surrounding them. It includes one form of shin splints; it
also affects the other smallish muscles of the lower leg. Ice and
anti-inflammatories can help, but surgery may be required to
allow the muscle more room to expand.
Some muscles grow so much that they constrict the blood flow
into the sheath...resulting in necrosis (a medical emergency) of
the muscle.

Stress Fracture of the shin bone (the tibia)

If you feel pain when you put pressure on the shin...rest. Stress
fractures donít show up on x-ray until healing is well under way; they
can be confirmed quite early by a bone scan. The dilemma--a fracture
requires six to eight weeks non impact exercise to heal. Use non
running exercise to maintain muscle tone until youíve confirmed if you
have a fracture. 

Muscle and connective tissue injuries to the front of the leg are due to overtraining--too many miles before your body has adapted to the load--or by too much fast training on surfaces which are too hard.

Concrete is six times harsher to your shin tissues than asphalt. Asphalt is three or more times harsher on your shin muscles than packed dirt trails. Grass and muddy trails are still softer, and significantly decrease your risk of shin splints.


Running Injury prevention from Running Dialogue
walk, jog, run to your first 5K race...weeks 1-10 of 10K training for beginners
Summary of 20 week 10K training schedule for 30 mile per week runners with connections to all 20 weeks
Buy Running Dialogue Today! ">Running Dialogue, 280 pages, $17.95, by David Holt RN. Training for the 5K to the Marathon, for beginners and experienced runners, with extensive injury prevention and treatment advice, nutrition, cartoons and inspirational essays, at Amazon.com

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Copyright David Holt 2,000 Any part, or all of this health and fitness material may be quoted or reviewed...provided you acknowledge the source...Running Dialogue author David Holt, this web page or www.runningbook.com, and contact me at holtrun@sprynet.com to let me know the material is being used or reviewed.

Shin splints are the typical first injury to walkers and runners...due to too much walking or running too soon.