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Health Tips / Shin Splints

Diagnosis and Symptons

Shin splints is a general term for any pain that exists between the knee and the ankle. Shin splints normally results from inflammation of the periostium the tissue attached to the muscle on the shin bone.

Tendonitis or stress fractures may also cause shin splints. Shin splints are normally caused by repetitive overuse, or a sudden increase in the training workload or schedule. A change of footwear may also be a contributory factor.


Smptom include pain along the inside of the shin bone or tibia, pain and tenderness, and a sensation of separation of the muscles from the bone.

Persistent pain that worsens with weight-bearing activity, may indicate stress fracture. Specialist medical advice is required in this instance.

Preventative Measures

Proper warm-up and stretching routines are important. A professionally devised training programme will help limit the likelihood of shin-splints. If mild pain develops on running, switch training temporarily to a different discipline such as cycling or stepping. Rest is very important to allow the inflammation to reduce and the muscle fibres to heal.

Biomechanical assessment may show up deficiencies in gait or posture which may predispose individuals to shin splints. Specialised shoe inserts, orthotics, may be useful in some instances.


For serious injury always consult your doctor or physiotherapist. 
To find a Chartered Physiotherapist in your area check

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Last update: 16/05/2013 12:38 • Previous update: 30/11/-0001 00:00