young woman runningRunning is a huge part of how you stay fit. You love participating in races with your friends. But lately, you've been dogged by horrible pain in your shins every time you run.

Can This Be Shin Splints?

Probably. The great majority of pain below the knee--which can affect the front and the side of your leg-- is shin splints.

What Causes Shin Splints in Runners?

  • Beginning or seasoned runners who increase their training too rapidly.
  • Imperfect foot structure - if you have flat feet or your foot excessively pronates when you run you're more likely to get shin splints.
  • Improper stretching
  • Poor footwear

Can I Treat Shin Splints at Home?

  • Once you've developed shin splints, you'll need to stop running so you can heal.
  • Use ice to bring down the inflammation
  • Ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatories can also help reduce the pain.

Do I Have to See a Doctor?

Yes. Shin splints can be tricky.

  • If you have shin splints due to your foot mechanics, your podiatrist will likely recommend an insert or prescriptive orthotics.
  • Shin splints may also be a sign of a stress fracture or other condition that needs to be addressed right away.

How Can I Prevent Shin Splints?

  • Build up your training gradually; increase the time you spend running and your distance by only 10% a week.
  • Instead of just doing the typical static calf stretches, incorporate dynamic warm-up exercises. These exercises will do two things:  warm the body’s muscles and soft tissues for optimum performance and reduce the risk of injury from overloading inadequately prepared muscles.

If you're a runner with shin splints, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment, often same day. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

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